Whom do you call to fix your lake?


Ulsoor lake shot at dusk
Ulsoor lake in Bengaluru on February 20 2022. Pic credit: Madan Murali

Citizens, activists and lake groups are taking up the cause of protecting and improving Bengaluru’s lakes. Engaged citizens and government agencies need to work together to restore to Bengaluru its old reputation of being the “city of lakes’. But there is widespread confusion on whom to approach regarding specific issues. The chart below shows the various government bodies involved with lakes and the current governance structure.

State and Municipal agencies involved in lake preservation
Government bodies involved in managing the lakes of Bengaluru. Pic credit: Sarayu Neelakantan and Sanjana Alex.

A list of government bodies responsible for the physical, chemical and ecological status of respective lakes are given here.

Read more: MOUs or no MOUs, citizen groups continue the fight to save Bengaluru’s lakes

In 2018, the Government of Karnataka (GoK) repealed the Karnataka Lake Conservation and Development Authority (KLCDA) Act and transferred all the responsibilities of the department to Karnataka Tank Conservation and Development Authority (KTCDA), which falls under the Minor Irrigation Department (MID) and is chaired by the Chief Minister. KTCDA is the regulatory agency for all lakes in the state but the custody of lakes is still under local government agencies. In Bengaluru, lakes come under BBMP, BDA, KFD, and BMRCL.

For most issues pertaining to a lake, you can contact the lake custodian but if the lake custodian is not responding you can contact MID at 080-2663 2102.

Most of these lakes have lake groups formed by residents and ecologists who are keen to improve the ecological status of lakes. A list of lakes and the lake groups and contact information of the person spearheading the group can be found here.

Read more: Surveying maps, roping in authorities and building a community for Bengaluru’s lakes

Departments and when you should approach them

Citizens can access rainfall forecasts and flood alerts from KSNDMC
Karnataka State Natural Disaster Monitoring Centre (KSNDMC). Pic credit: Sarayu Neelakantan and Sanjana Alex
KFD is incharge of administration of regulating vegetation
Karnataka Forest Department (KFD). Pic credit: Sarayu Neelakantan and Sanjana Alex
BWSSB responsibilities
BWSSB is responsible for Sewage and STP. Pic credit: Sarayu Neelakantan and Sanjana Alex
KFDC is in charge of fishing rights
Karnataka Fisheries Development Corporation. (KFDC). Pic credit: Sarayu Neelakantan and Sanjana Alex
BDA is presently the custodian of 33 lakes
Bangalore Development Authority (BDA). Pic credit: Sarayu Neelakantan and Sanjana Alex
4 Divisions are: Lake, SWD, horticulture and SWM
4 major divisions under BBMP which does lake related works. Pic credit: Sarayu Neelakantan and Sanjana Alex

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About Shilpa M Swaraj 1 Article
Shilpa M Swaraj decided to pursue a career in water management after witnessing Bangalore succumb to the water crisis during her growing up years. As a British Council scholar, she is currently pursuing a Master's degree in Hydrology and water management at Newcastle University, United Kingdom. Prior to this course, she worked at ATREE as a research assistant for water security.