By Susmita Das
The KSPCB Chairman around 15th march 2016 sanctioned Rs. 4 crore to build another STP (Sewage Treatment Plan) at Halsoor Lake. Since then, there has been no update about the construction of the STP or the utilization of the amount sanctioned.
Later when an RTI was filed, we found out that the KSPCB officials replied that – “Only tenders have been invited and letter of acceptance has been issued for the construction of treatment plant at Halsoor. Hence there is no utilization of amount received from Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) till date.” This RTI was received around 30th October 2016. There has been a steady time period of 7 months when the amount of 4 crore has no utilization, leaving out no clue for the public, about the money.
A DNA report states, after the visit to Ulsoor Lake around 12th march, by the KSPCB Chairman, along with the Minister of Infrastructure Development, Information and Public Relations and Deputy Mayor and BBMP officials, they came up with the dire need for the sewage treatment plant at the Ulsoor Lake. They asked for a detailed project report (DPR) for this purpose from the BWSSB engineers.
Recent recheck of the matter suggest that, the government finally around January 18th 2017, the Times of India report states that, the KSPCB has already installed 4 crore for installation. Therefore, the amount which was sanctioned around 7 months back was somewhere, or rather not utilized for such a long time. When asked to the people nearby and in and around Halsoor Lake, they said there has been no action taken about cleaning up the lake. The government officials come here often to check the pollution level, but there has not been any steady improvement regarding the STP.
The care taker there named Arjun, states that, “We often see government officials visiting this place, but they never came up with a solid plan for Sewage treatment plant. All people come here and make the lake dirty. As you can see the place is covered with plastic bottles and chip packets”. The KSPCB says that, “Finally allotment has been done to the Euro tech company which is expected to install the plant within six months.” (Source – TOI). When we visited the lake, few days back, we did not see or observe any progress in that place.
We still don’t know whether construction is going to start within few days or not. We are yet to found out more about it.
This Article is written by Susmita Das as part of curriculum at IIJNM