Monday, Jun 30, 2003
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By D. Radhakrishnan
Sack loads of bio-remedial powder being emptied into the lake at Udhagamandalam to purify water.
In the first phase of the `Ooty lake restoration and maintenance project', which commenced late last year, work on removing the rapidly proliferating weed (water hyacinth), which had covered 18 acres of the total waterspread of 45 acres, had been taken up. With about 95 per cent of the weeds having been removed, the lake now wears a much better look.
With the oxygen content in the water now being artificially supplemented through underwater aeration, and a `bio-remedy' process having commenced, the locals and the visitors hope that in course of time the popular tourist attraction would be restored to "at least a semblance of its old glory."
However, they say, unless the principal causes of the deterioration of the lake were tackled, all efforts directed at its bio-revival would prove futile.
The main reason for the pollution and the rapid weed proliferation was the unchecked entry into the lake of pollutants through the Kodappamund channel, running through the heart of the town.
With the project expected to be completed during early 2005, experts say the success of the scheme would depend to a "significant extent" on effective prevention of sewage water mingling with the lake water. But many lament that there have been no signs of the civic administration rising to the occasion.
Though the municipal officials have been promising that the town's sewage would be prevented from entering the lake, they are yet to translate their words into action.
The "excessive" commercialisation of the boat house area is also a source of danger to the lake in the long-run.
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