Mir Alam Tank likely to get facelift

Mir Alam Tank likely to get facelift

Known for its harmful effects on the marine life, water hyacinth, coupled with Algal Blooms, is gradually swallowing the entire pleasant surface of...

Rajendranagar: Known for its harmful effects on the marine life, water hyacinth, coupled with Algal Blooms, is gradually swallowing the entire pleasant surface of the otherwise beautiful Mir Alam Tank, which carries almost 215 years of glorified history. The lake was once popular for its crystal clear water during Nizams' era.

The GHMC (Lake Wing) has recently brought in trash collectors and has also taken up the removal of hyacinth, algal blooms and weeds from water bodies under its limits. As part of these efforts, the civic body also identified several lakes and ponds to clear up the trash and vines spread over the water surfaces, but unfortunately, the name of Mir Alam Tank did not appear in the list.

"The fastest growing vine plant on the surface of the tank has become a breeding ground for mosquitoes, making it difficult for the people living nearby areas stand still on their feet for a few minutes. It is also affecting the health of the local people, especially children, badly," said Mohammed Zaheeruddin, a local activist from Hasan Nagar.

The prevalence of the water vine is looming large over the water body, which is shrinking up rapidly due the depleting water table, raising concern over its survival.

What is more concerning is the apathy on the part of the officials concerned who seem to be least bothered about the rapidly growing hyacinth and algal blooms.

The government has proposed to develop the tank on the lines of Necklace Road and a boundary wall has also been constructed on the banks to prevent encroachments some time back, concealing the entire radius of the water body. However, no further works were taken up.

"Some of the banks of the water body have developed 3 to 5 feet long weeds after the hyacinth had dried the surface up with water, and it is difficult for anyone to find the actual starting point of the water body, as the dry land fills the area with bushes and vegetation at the scene. This could ultimately also help the encroachers to venture into the dried land," Zaheeruddin said.

Assistant Engineer at GHMC (Irrigation Department) Rama Rao said, "The beautification works under Mission Kakatiya Scheme will start soon. Funds of about Rs 40 crore have also been sanctioned for the purpose. With these funds, the water body will be developed on the lines of Durgam Cheruvu. The process of calling tenders might have completed and the beautification works are expected to begin anytime soon, he said.

Lake area

The eco-system of the tank has over 5.90 sq km of catchment area and flows midst of the hilly plateaus, now turned into densely populated areas. According to the officials, the present full tank level of the water body stands at 464 acres and from the surface to the bottom, it has over 15 meters depth.

The top level of the dam stands at +518.135, while its full reservoir level is + 517.285. The water body's silt level stands at + 511.800, while the top width is + 1.10 meters. The length of Arch Bund is 1,298 meters and the storage capacity is 270 million cubic feet.

History of the tank

The tank was constructed in 1804-1806, during the period of Nawab Mir Akbar Ali Khan Bahadur or Asaf Jah III and named after Mir Alam Bahadur, the then Prime Minister of Hyderabad state. The 215-year-old historic tank covers Bahadurpura, Kishan Bagh, Attapur, Hyderguda and Rajendranagar on its surroundings, and is predominantly interconnected with all other streams of different sizes.

The water flown from all sides of the catchment areas culminate into Mir Alam Tank, making it a big natural resource of water. The Nehru Zoological Park stands on the bank of the tank, hence poses a great risk to the wild life present inside. Mir Alam Filter is being used on daily basis to treat the water and supplied to Zoo Park and other establishments to fulfil various irrigation needs.

Algal blooms

Algal blooms are recognizable by large blades of algae that may wash up onto the shoreline. Algal blooms rapidly increase or accumulate into the population of algae in freshwater. Blooms that harm the ecology are called harmful algal blooms. Also, a bloom can block out the sunlight from the organisms and deplete oxygen levels in the water. Some algae release poisons into the water.

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