This year, I haven’t seen the pre-monsoon rains that almost start by March. The monsoon is delayed and so far there has not been any good rains except maybe a couple of times. No matter how much we conserve, the water crisis is of grim proportions.
We don’t have Cauvery water yet, not that it is of great solace because we all know how irregular that supply is even in areas that have them. And, now BWSSB have literally left the people high and dry by suspending supply for 3 straight days in the coming week. In a thirsty and parched Bangalore, water tankers are having a field day. They are overcharging and, of course, no guarantees that you will still get water. I don’t know what we have done to this beautiful garden city. When we came here 10 years ago, massive construction work was going on in terms of flyovers and apartment complexes. The area we live in South Bangalore has seen immense growth or should I say degradation in the past few years. The water table has gone alarmingly low with indiscriminate construction and cutting of trees.
Most lakes in Bangalore have dried up and vanished. Many have been encroached upon to get more land for development. To see some of the sad statistics read this article. Some statistics from the article:
The 262 wetlands that existed in Bangalore in 1962 had declined by a whopping 58 per cent by 2007.
42 lakes were reportedly lost due to development work. They were converted to residential layouts, playgrounds, stadiums, industries, government buildings and bus stands. Scores of private projects, apartments, independent houses and commercial complexes now stand on erstwhile lakes.
Now we are grappling with a drought-like situation. The only solution I see is recharging the lakes and rain water harvesting. Surprisingly, the builder did not give us that option. There is not an inch of land in our layout where we can try out rain-water harvesting initiative for our community. If we wish to have it in our home then we will require to change plumbing and have a sump too, which is very difficult to do with a fully constructed house.
With rapid development, the population of Bangalore has doubled in the past few years. An inefficient and corrupt government and a lackadaisical civic administration is hardly doing anything to remedy the situation. I am alarmed when I see the rapid cutting down of trees whether in the name of Metro development or highways. With the trees gone, the climate changes are becoming more acute. The once naturally air-conditioned city now has the temperatures climbing to the late 30s these days.
What is the long-term solution that we can look at? Looks like the cash cow has been milked dry and hung out to die.⊕