Future of Lakes: In Whose Hands?

Future of Lakes: In Whose Hands?

Since the orders of transferring the ownership of lakes from Irrigation Department to Municipal Corporation have been rolled out of the State Ministry, the doubts on conservation of both the lakes have been swelled around the minds of lake conservators of the city.

 

Future of Lakes: In Whose Hands?Two historical lakes of Udaipur, Pichola and Fatehsagar which draw thousands of tourists from all over the world every year are now becoming the properties of Municipal Corporation of Udaipur.

Since the orders of transferring the ownership of lakes from Irrigation Department to Municipal Corporation have been rolled out of the State Ministry, the doubts on conservation of both the lakes have been swelled around the minds of lake conservators of the city.

The main question that rises is “Is Municipal Corporation capable enough to control, maintain and develop the lakes of Udaipur?”

Anil Mehta, an environmentalist who is also doing his PhD in water resource is an Assistant Secretary of Lake Conservation Committee. Expressing his contrast to the given orders of transferring the lakes from one department to other he said, ”The order is opposite to what Chief Minister ,Ashok Gehlot has said in his last budget speech where he gave an assurance of founding The Lake Conservation Authority to manage the lakes of Udaipur.”

He said that a lake is not just a water tank; it is built on its own singular eco system which is made of water assortment area, water flowing area and downstream. Lake conservation authority which is loaded with science and technology experts, laboratories and high tech devices can only assure the conservation of lakes.

Further explaining the issue he says that lakes of Udaipur are under the control of nearly 15 government departments including Department of Fisheries, Irrigation Department, Municipal Corporation, Municipality, Revenue Department, Tourism Department, Urban Improvement Trust, Public Works Department, Public Health Department, Ground Water, Forest Department, Soil and Water conservation, Police, District Administration and Pollution Control Board.

Dr. Tej Rajdan, Secretary of Lake Conservation Committee doubts the government’s decision as a step forward to dissolve the making of conservation authority and destroying the future of Udaipur lakes.

Nandkishore Sharma, Secretary of Mohan Singh Mehta Memorial Trust put his views saying that lakes are not just tourist spots but also the only source of drinking water to the citizens of Udaipur.

There are three scientific aspects on which lakes exists namely, Limnological, Hydrological and Ecological.

“The boundaries of Municipal Corporation are limited to city, then how will they control the catchment area and water flowing areas,” asks Nandkishore Sharma.

Tejshankar Paliwal, President of Chandpol Nagrik Samiti says that Municipal Corporation has no control over the issue of sewage water falling in the lakes and water logging problem in the residential areas in monsoon whereas giving them the responsibilities of preserving the lakes is highly questionable and doubtful.

“It would be a dreadful step handing over the lakes to Municipal Corporation which has no technical resources to take the responsibility,” says Haji Sardar Mohammad, founder of Jheel Hiteshi Nagrik Manch.

The group says that there is an urgent need of setting up a team of experts, technocrats and citizens’ group to take appropriate and selfless measure to save the beauty of these lakes.

When asked what would be the next step by Lake Conservation Committee, Anil Mehta said, “We will continuously appeal to CM, that’s what we can do. We are trying this and since 1992 we have sent several proposals to court and our fight to save our lakes will continue.”

Now it’s time to ask your responsibility and take on the whole issue, how concern is the local Udaipurite who never miss to spend weekend evening Pichola and Fatehsagar.

What are your core responsibilities to save the lakes? Will you confine yourself to admire the beauty when lakes are brimming or to criticize when the lakes are dry?

Atleast we can think over it.

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