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BBMP begins SWD desilting; activists term it just 'ritual'

BBMP begins SWD desilting; activists term it just ‘ritual’
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BBMP begins SWD desilting; activists term it just ‘ritual’ 

Highlights

The city has a network of 843 km of SWD. In May, the Urban Development Department approved tenders worth Rs 673 crore to remodel the primary, secondary and tertiary drains.

Bengaluru: Every year with monsoon showers wreaking havoc on the city leaving it inundated, the lack of preparedness by the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) has been exposed time and again. However, on Thursday, the municipal corporation undertook the cleaning of Storm Water Drains (SWD) to avoid water stagnation and other related problems.

A city-based activist Ram Prasad and co-founder of 'Friends of Lakes' said rather than solving the basic infrastructural issues, the Palike performed its ritual of cleaning the SWD only after the city was left marooned.

"The yearly ritual of desilting and desludging of SWD as usual happens only when flooding is reported. On the contrary, the authorities should plan early to mitigate the risks. Even though preparedness teams are formed, no action is seen on ground to effectively manage the floods. The very design of the SWDs of Bengaluru has been such that there is high sewage flow which contributes to sludge accumulation and with no robust working silt trap or debris trap being part of the design the ritual of yearly or even monthly maintenance seems inevitable," Prasad explained.

He further said the situation at the Vrishabhavathi Valley Zone was more worrisome as industrial effluents were emptied into the SWD. "These being the issues that require coordination between KSPCB, BWSSB and SWD departments, it becomes important and a necessity to have concentrated efforts. Designing the SWD to handle these complex issues is pertinent and the technical advisory also needs to be robust and multidisciplinary with systemic approach and open-minded for innovative designs. Research institutes and universities can play a major role in bringing about these design changes with the young minds being ignited towards problem solving and innovative entrepreneurship," he added.

The city has a network of 843 km of SWD. In May, the Urban Development Department approved tenders worth Rs 673 crore to remodel the primary, secondary and tertiary drains.

The remodelling works were to be carried out by the BBMP to take preventive measures against flooding. However, last month parts of the city were inundated after heavy rains lashed the State capital. Repeated calls made to the BBMP Commissioner N Manjunath Prasad were left unanswered.




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