Thursday, June 25, 2009

BBMP engineers must be accountable - Bangalore - Cities - The Times of India

BBMP engineers must be accountable - Bangalore - Cities - The Times of India
Bangalore Central MP P C Mohan wants BBMP officials to prepare a bar chart where every pending project is shown -- from the time when
work will begin to the estimated date of completion.

He held a review meeting of developmental work in his constituency with BBMP officials on Monday. Mohan regretted that only 10% of work has been completed. "The main complaints are about bad roads, silt not being removed and faulty water supply,'' he pointed out.

Executive engineers gave the MP an update of all pending works in their areas. They were told to first identify critical areas for de-silting, hire people to work and remove enroachments. "In case of flooding, engineers should be held responsible. All should have a list of when they will start and complete their work,'' Mohan said.

KSPCB chief threatens to slap cases on hospitals

KSPCB chief threatens to slap cases on hospitals
KSPCB chief threatens to slap cases on hospitals

Express News Service
First Published : 21 Jun 2009 04:55:00 AM IST
Last Updated : 21 Jun 2009 08:46:20 AM IST

BANGALORE: The Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) Chairman Dr H C Sharatchandra on Saturday said that criminal cases can be booked against the directors of the nine hospitals to which closure notices were recently issued by KSPCB for violating the Water Act 1974.

He was speaking after an introductory seminar on “Decentralized Approaches to Wastewater Treatment” organised here by KSPCB.

The nine hospitals are Victoria, Bowring, Lady Curzon, Vani Vilas, K C General, Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Chest Diseases, Kidwai Memorial, Ghousia and Jayanagar General Hospitals.

He further said that these hospitals have received sufficient funds from the central government and they are using it for replacing the tiles, etc. instead of installing an effluent treatment plant (ETP).

As per rules, the complexes that house more than 100 apartments and huge commercial complexes must install sewage treatment plants (STP) in the premises.

Presently, there are around 12,810 industries that release effluents in the state, 4,581 of which have installed their own ETPs.

KSPCB will give reasonable time to the remaining industries to install ETPs. If they do not comply, KSPCB will withhold consent for their operation.

Centralised sewer treatment systems are aging and inefficient. Nearly 740 million litre per day (MLD) of sewer is being released from the city every day and the Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB) has set up merely 13 STPs.

Only 60 per cent of the water is being treated, which is also not being utilised properly.

Decentralised waste water treatment solutions are increasingly being recognised as cost-effective and environment- friendly options for the cities not served by the conventional centralized system.

Decentralised Wastewater Treatment Systems (DEWATS) is one such unique approach developed on the basis of natural wastewater treatment principles and techniques.

Monsoon here, time for RWH

Citizen Matters, Bangalore: Monsoon here, time for RWH
Monsoon here, time for RWH

The long-overdue uptick for RWH is finally here. Around 10,000 buildings in the city may be catching rainwater, by one informal estimate, and the numbers are steadily rising.
By Vaishnavi Vittal
21 Jun 2009, Citizen Matters
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Gautam B Pandit and his family were very excited last Wednesday after the heavy downpour in the city. The rain filled up the 5000 litre barrel they have set up in their house for rainwater harvesting (RWH). “We could have filled another two barrels that night. The barrel just overflowed”, Gautam says. The Pandits have just installed RWH at their home on Hayes Road in Richmond Town.

The 40 houses in Sherwood Apartments, located on Kaggadasapura Main Road in CV Raman Nagar, have not faced any water problem for the past four months. All thanks to RWH says the residents. K S Thirumaran, one of the residents of CV Raman Nagar says that he suggested RWH to his neighbours. “They all welcomed the idea and contributed”, he says adding “ The entire apartment depended on one borewell”.

At the Embassy Tranquil Apartments in Koramangala 6th block, Rajiv Kuchchal mooted the idea to his neighbours around two months back. “Everyone was positive”, he says.

Since the groundwater level in their building is high, they adopted the storage method. Now instead of overflowing drains, our sumps get filled, Kuchchal says, adding that they don’t switch on the borewell when there is heavy rain. They collect anywhere between 15,000-20,000 litres of water per day during heavy rains.


Rekha Arun with her RWH system, the blue barrel is the first rain separator(pic: VV)

Pandit, Thirumaran and the residents of the Embassy Tranquil Apartments are among those in the city who have installed RWH recently to combat erratic Cauvery water supply and avoid shelling out money to buy water from tankers.

Bangalore has primarily depended on Cauvery water. Traditional sources of water supply like tanks and lakes are now declining. Groundwater levels have already fallen due to heavy extraction.

In his book, ‘Amruthavarshini’, a guide to RWH, A R Shivakumar, Executive Secretary and Principal Investigator – RWH, Karnataka State Council for Science and Technology (KSCST), states that in the last 30 years, Bangalore has experienced five years of severe drought and three years of moderate drought. The quest for water has resulted in over exploitation of groundwater, he says in the book. “The quantity of run-off water in the storm drains has increased tremendously. RWH is all about conserving this water, thereby, supplementing the present supply”.
In Chennai, during J Jayalalithaa’s tenure as Chief Minister, she made it mandatory to harvest rainwater in both old and new buildings, and also provide a duct for recharging the groundwater. According to the Chennai Metropolitan Water Supply and Sewerage Board, nearly four lakh buildings have RWH.

As the monsoons set in, for many in the city, RWH seems to be the way to address this problem. In 2007, the Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB) made it mandatory to implement RWH for all new applicants of water connections.

T Venkataraju, Chief Engineer, BWSSB, says this is being strictly enforced now. He explains that sanctions for new water connections are approved only after inspections by the Assistant Executive Engineer and Water Inspector of the concerned sub division. “They’ll go to the spot and inspect directly. They’ll see the pipelines and check the filter media. Then they will certify”, he explains. Between April 2008 and May 2009, 3000 new buildings implemented RWH, says Venkataraju.

Implementation of RWH has been made mandatory in Bangalore by two other bodies apart from the BWSSB. The June 2007 Zoning Regulations of the Bangalore Development Authority (BDA) states that the “Provision of RWH is mandatory for all plots which are more than 240 sq metres in extent. A five per cent rebate on the property tax is offered for residential properties and two per cent for non residential buildings within Bangalore Metropolitan Area for the first five years when RWH is made an integral part of the building constructed”.

The Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike’s (BBMP) building bye-laws of 2003 also mention RWH. Part IV, bye-law 32 says “Every building with a plinth area of exceeding 100 sq mtrs and built on a site measuring not less than 200 sq mtrs shall have one or more RWH structures having a minimum total capacity as detailed in Schedule XII”. The bye-laws also mention that a levy of about Rs. 1000 for every 100 sq. mtr will be collected if the owner fails to provide RWH.

B M Tirakanagoudar, Joint Director of Town Planning, BBMP, says that all high rise buildings that have approached the BBMP for plan sanction have RWH. “These owners come to us for Occupancy Certificate (OC). We do not give OC without looking into whether they have installed RWH. But most houses violate this. They do not come to us for OC”, he says, adding that it is not strictly implemented.
<snip> click above link to read rest of the article

Day after: Chaos, blame game on, but no closure

Day after: Chaos, blame game on, but no closure
Day after: Chaos, blame game on, but no closure

Express News Service
First Published : 20 Jun 2009 07:13:56 AM IST
Last Updated : 20 Jun 2009 11:23:35 AM IST

BANGALORE: A day after the Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) slapped a closure notice on nine government hospitals, seven hospitals are yet to receive formal closure orders for not complying with the Effluent Treatment Plan (ETP) norms.

Meanwhile, heads of Health and Family Welfare and the Medical Education departments are likely to meet on Saturday to find a way out of the situation.

On thursday the KSPCB had said that the nine government hospitals that had defaulted on the deadline for setting up of the ETPs have been ordered to close down within 15 days. The KSPCB had said and they shall stop admitting patients with immediate effect.

The nine hospitals are KC General hospital, General hospital,Jayanagar, Bowring and Lady Curzon hospital, Minto Eye hospital, Vanivilas Hospital, Victoria Hospital and Kidwai Memorial Institute of Oncology, Hajee Sir Ismail Sait Gousia hospital, SDS TB Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Chest Diseases.

So far only authorities in Jayanagar General hospital and Victoria hospital confirmed receiving a copy of the KSPCB’s order, while all the others claimed that they had received no formal communication in the matter.

“How can we stop the admission of the patients without the written formal letter by the pollution board,” said Dr Satish Chandra, Medical superintendent of Bowring and Lady Curzon hospital.

Just like any other day

Meanwhile, it was business as usual at all the defaulting hospitals. “Neither can we stop the entry of the patients into the hospital nor could we deny them the treatment," said Dr BG Tilak, Medical superintendent, Victoria hospital. Dr Ashok Shenoy, Medical Superintendent of Kidwai Memorial Institute of Oncology told Express, “I myself operated on a few patients today. Our services continue.” So far none of the hospitals have started making alternative arrangements for inpatients in the event of a closure.

Elections and the blame game

Authorities in all the hospitals blame the recently concluded Lok Sabha polls as the reason behind the delay in setting up of ETPs. They contend that while the tender process was started, it had to be stopped when the model code of conduct was in force. Also, the involvement of multiple agencies like the BWSSB, PWD, Pollution Control Board made the decision making process a long drawn one.

High cost

Cost of setting up an ETP and the ageing structures that house some of the defaulting hospitals are factors that cannot be overlooked.

Bangalore Medical College and Research Institute Dean and Director G T Subhash said that the bids received in the case of Victoria and Bowring and Lady Curzon hospitals were in the order of Rs 10 crore to Rs 12 crore. Setting up ETPs in these hospitals will also entail the replacement of old and worn out water supply and UGD lines, thereby increasing the cost.

Legal Expert speak

``The closure order for the common establishment which does not cater to large section of the society could be adhered but for the such big government hospitals which treat hundreds of patients would be difficult,’’ said, BV Acharaya, former advocate general.

Nine government hospitals ordered to shut

Nine government hospitals ordered to shut
Nine government hospitals ordered to shut

Express News Service
First Published : 19 Jun 2009 05:46:00 AM IST
Last Updated :

BANGALORE: The Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) has ordered the closure of nine government hospitals in Bangalore for failing to install effluent treatment plants. KSPCB has directed the hospitals to shut down from July 1, 2009.

The hospitals facing closure order are Victoria, Vani Vilas, Kidwai Memorial Institute of Oncology, Minto Ophthalmic Hospital, Bowring and Lady Curzon, SDS TB Sanatorium (Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Chest Diseases), Hajee Sir Ismail Sait Gosha Hospital in Tasker Town, General Hospital in Jayanagar and K C General Hospital in Malleswaram.

They have been asked to stop admitting patients with immediate effect.

KSPCB had kept the closure order issued to six private hospitals in abeyance till July 30, 2009 giving them time to install plants. They are HAL Hospital, Chinmaya Mission in Indiranagar, St Martha’s Hospital on Nrupatunga Road, Ambedkar Hospital in KG Halli, KIMS Hospital in VV Puram and ESI Hospital in Indiranagar.

KSPCB counsel filed the closure order report to the Lok Adalat on Thursday. The Adalat accepted the report.

Meanwhile, the Adalat had rejected the plea of the state government to extend time for installation of the plants but granted it a week’s time.

Under section 33(A) of Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974 KSPCB had issued closure orders against these hospitals.

It had directed that the hospitals stop all activities after 15 days from the date of the order and directed them to make alternative arrangements for in-patients.

KSPCB had further directed the managing directors of BESCOM and BWSSB to disconnect power and water supply to the nine hospitals.

Bangalore Urban Deputy Commissioner has to ensure the hospitals close after July 1, 2009, KSPCB directed.

Lok Adalat chairman K L Manjunath and member Dr Yellappa Reddy pulled up the government. “The officers in the government have taken the Adalat and KSPCB for granted. Your (officers’) conduct shows that you have no intention to install the effluent treatment plants.”

Floating in muck

Floating in muck
Floating in muck

Drain water overflows at Jumma Masjid road, Shivajinagar in Bangalore on Sunday.
Express News Service
First Published : 18 Jun 2009 07:24:29 AM IST
Last Updated : 18 Jun 2009 08:17:58 AM IST

BANGALORE: The Jain Temple Street and Jumma Masjid Street are floating in a lot of muck. The manholes here are flooded and despite repeated pleas to the authorities, nothing much has been done about the situation.

President of Sadbhavana Youth Social Welfare Association, K Sadiq Pasha, said that whenever it rains the sewerage water overflows from the manholes and floods these two roads. The sewage water has flooded the area form the past 20 days. “We have complained about it the civic authorities and to our area MLA, but they have not taken any action in this regard,” he said.

“There are nearly 150 shops in the area and the customers hesitate to come to the road as it is inundated by the overflowing sewerage water and hence our business has come down. Some businessmen of the area have fallen sick due this,” he added.

In the past the authorities have cleared the sewer lines and have stopped the sewerage from over flowing, but that was temporary. The sewage water started overflowing from the manholes once again.

“We need a permanent solution for the problem. We held a symbolic protest today.

If the civic authorities fail to do anything to stop the sewage water from overflowing we are planning to hold a protest and stop paying taxes,” he added.

Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB) officials said, “If the problem had come to our notice we would have solved it by now. We will clear it at the earliest.”

Manhole lid missing? Now, the onus is on you

Manhole lid missing? Now, the onus is on you
Manhole lid missing? Now, the onus is on you

This drain near Madiwala Police Station leaves much to be desired on BWSSB’s part.
N R Madhusudhan
First Published : 16 Jun 2009 04:42:00 AM IST
Last Updated : 16 Jun 2009 08:19:38 AM IST

BANGALORE: Following Abhishek’s death, Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB), will henceforth, replace damaged or misplaced manhole lids as soon as it receives complaints to prevent freak accidents. It will also undertake massive desilting of sewer lines to stop them from overflowing.

BWSSB has laid nearly 3,600 kilometres of lateral sewer lines and 180 kilometres of sub-sewer lines. These lines are connected to any of the four valleys namely Vrishabavathi Valley, Hebbal Valley, Koramangala Valley and Chalaghatta Valley. The sewage water flows out of the city through these valleys.

The sewer lines are interspaced with manholes at vital places to help clear the sewer lines whenever they get blocked. Most of these sewer lines are laid underground and there are more than 5,000 manholes.

People remove the manhole lids for rain water to flow through sewer lines.

Some of them do not replace the lids properly leading to accidents. In other cases, the manhole lids are damaged due to various reasons.

Some residents direct the rain water falling on their rooftops to the sewer lines making them overflow. Some others dispose their solid waste in the sewer lines causing blockages in them.

BWSSB has undertaken massive desilting of the sewer lines in the city.

Desilting work is undertaken every Tuesday at one of the identified low-lying areas every week. So far, desilting work has been completed at Pillanna Garden and Ulsoor. The recently inducted jetting machines are being used for the desilting work.

One of the BWSSB officials said, “We are preparing to replace the manhole lids as soon as we get the complaints.

We have undertaken desilting of sewer lines to prevent them from overflowing. We request the residents not to let rain water into the sewer lines and also not to dispose solid waste in them.” Residents can call BWSSB helplines to lodge their complaints.


The newly announced Bangalore Monsoon Management Task Force (BMMTF) would be constituted on a permanent basis and is likely to comprise all civic stake holders, like the Bangalore Agenda Task Force during the S M Krishna period.

The only difference this time will be that there will be no private members in the team. Bangalore South incharge Minister R Ashok told The New Indian Express that the task force will comprise officers from civic agencies like the BWSSB, BSNL, BDA, BMTC, BMRDA, BBMP among others.

BBMP Commissioner Bharatlal Meena who is likely to be the member secretary of the proposed task force has been asked to work out the composition and functions of the BMMTF which will focus only on tackling the monsoon woes in the city, Ashoka said. The proposal with guidelines and functions will then be forwarded to the government for a formal approval. A clearer picture will emerge after a week, the minister added.


Seamless travel on Seshadri Rd finally a reality - Bangalore - Cities - The Times of India

With the proposed Cauvery Water Supply Scheme Phase II using up Bangalore's quota of Cauvery water, and Greater Bangalore's need for more water, it's time to plan ahead. The chief minister will shortly lead a delegation to the Prime Minister and submit a memorandum for increased share of the river's water.

Currently, BWSSB has an annual allotment of 19 thousand million cubic feet (tmc), of which it utilizes 12.5 tmc annually. When the proposed Fourth Stage II Phase of the scheme gets commissioned in 2011, the entire 19 tmc will be used as the project will bring in additional 500 MLD to Bangalore. After this, Bangalore's quota of Cauvery water will be exhausted.

The chief minister, who laid the foundation stone for a rainwater harvesting theme park in Jayanagar, spoke about the city's water and power needs not being in tandem with its growth. The government proposes to set up a dedicated power plant to cater to Bangaloreans.


A first-of-its-kind rainwater harvesting (RWH) theme park at Jayanagar 5th Block will use 26 methods of RWH over 48,000 sqft. The BWSSB's project, in association with Karnataka State Council for Science and Technology, will educate people on the methods. The park will be completed in 8 months at a cost of Rs 2 crore.

State to ask for more water from Cauvery - Bangalore - Cities - The Times of India

State to ask for more water from Cauvery - Bangalore - Cities - The Times of India
State to ask for more water from Cauvery
13 Jun 2009, 0332 hrs IST, TNN

Bangalore : Karnataka will challenge the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal award by filing a fresh petition, seeking additional 32 TMC ft water to meet Bangalore's requirements.

"We will pursue the special leave petition pending before Supreme Court, seeking a review of its earlier order," BWSSB minister Katta Subramanya Naidu said on Friday.

Currently, the state is receiving 17 TMCft to meet Bangalore's drinking water requirement. "The tribunal had allotted 17 TMC ft when the city was just 300 sq km in size. Now, it has expanded to 800 sqkm," Naidu said.

Rejuvenation of Arkavathy

The government will take steps to revive and conserve Arkavathy, a tributary of Cauvery, again to augment drinking water needs.

"At least 25% of water supply for Bangalore comes from Arkavathy. But recently, the source has dried up by 50%, thanks to encroachments. Also, we have lost feeder lines to large and small water tanks fed by Arkavathy," Bommai said.

"We'll lead a team of officials, including deputy commissioners of Bangalore Urban and Rural, and prepare on-the-spot action plan," he explained.

Bangalore gets 20 sewage treatment plants

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Bangalore gets 20 sewage treatment plants

BANGALORE, JUNE 13, 2009: In a move to tackle shortage of water in Bangalore City, Karnataka Government has decided to set up 20 more Sewage Treatment Plants (STPs) in the city with an estimated cost of Rs 800 crore to treat sewage water.

Minister for Information and Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB) Katta Subramanya Naidu on Friday chaired a meeting of BWSSB officials said a plan has been prepared to treat 700 million litres per day (MLD) sewage and supply it for non-domestic purposes at 50 per cent rates of drinking water. The work on the projects was expected to start by June end.

The city has currently 11 STPs and out of them three were under repair. A sum of Rs 300 crore would be spent on replacing old drinking water supply pipelines. Though the Bangalore City required 1250 MLD of drinking water, only 850 MLD was being supplied now, he said.

Earlier, Minister for Water Resources Basavaraj Bommai and Mr. Naidu held a meeting with top officials of the Water Resources and BWSSB and come out a plan to undertake a survey of the 40 km stretch of the Arkavathi catchment area from Nandi hills upto Thippagondanahalli (T G Halli) reservoir to identify encroachments and clear them. The survey work would commence from July 15. T G Halli reservoir now supplies about 30 MLD of drinking water to parts of the city, they said.

Following of encroachment of catchment areas of the river, there has been a decline in the inflow of water from the Arkavathi river to T.G Halli and Hesarghatta reservoirs. Both reservoirs supplied about 60 MLD per day to the City. Officials of BWSSB and Water Resources Department would jointly conduct the survey for desilting lakes and water courses in the entire catchment area and curb the activity of mining in the catchment areas, they said.

Officials of different departments such as Minor Irrigation, Public Works, Watershed Departments, Mines and Geology, Forest and Ecology, and Bangalore Rural and Urban districts deputy commissioners would be roped in clear encroachments, stop mining, quarrying and stone crushing activities, and monitor exploitation of groundwater, ministers said.

Clearance and revival of water sources would augment water to the tune of 2000 meter cubic feet (MCF) both reservoirs, they said. The inflow was about 824 MCF in 2007.

Encroachments to be removed: Bommai

Encroachments to be removed: Bommai
Encroachments to be removed: Bommai

Express News Service
First Published : 13 Jun 2009 07:18:56 AM IST
Last Updated :

BANGLORE: In a bid to improve drinking water supply in the city, the government has decided to remove the encroachments in the catchment areas of the Arkavathy river so that the water level in the Tippagondanahalli (TG Halli) and Torekadadevanahalli (TK Halli) reservoirs improves.

The Minister for Water Resources Basavaraj Bommai and the Minister for BWSSB, IT and BT Katta Subramanyam Naidu, accompanied by the deputy commissioners of Bangalore Urban and Rural districts, will inspect the catchment area soon and take on-thespot decisions regarding the removal of encroachments.

According to him, a survey of the encroachments has commenced and so far 8.5 km of the total 40 km length had been covered. The interim report would be ready by July 15.

Mosquitoes thrive as BBMP spends crores on their eradication: Citizen Matters, Bangalore

Citizen Matters, Bangalore: Mosquitoes thrive as BBMP spends crores on their eradication
Mosquitoes thrive as BBMP spends crores on their eradication

While BBMP says they have spent 16 crores of rupees in the past four years for mosquito eradication, residents say that spraying of insecticides in their locality happens rarely if ever.
By Supriya Khandekar
10 Jun 2009, Citizen Matters

Even after spending crores on mosquito extermination, there were around 10 Chikungunya and five dengue cases reported in Bangalore earlier last month.

Mosquito (Aedes aegypti)

Aedes aegypti, the mosquito that is responsible for Chikungunya (pic courtesy: Wikimedia Commons)

Dr Usha Vasankar, Director, Heath and family Welfare Department, Bangalore says, "As per the BBMP report submitted to us there are 131 Chikungunya cases and 10 dengue cases in Bangalore as of 31st May 2009."

"It is a routine to swat and shoo mosquitoes every evening," says T R Shastry, a resident of JP Nagar shooing a few mosquitoes buzzing above his head. Shastry’s experience is shared by a lot of Bangaloreans.

In a recent reply to an RTI application filed by MVK Anil Kumar, an RTI activist, it was revealed that the BBMP's Health Department has spent more than Rs.4 crores for the year 2008-09 on mosquito eradication and anti-larval operations.

Kumar filed an RTI application on 8th May 2009 to find out the total amount spent in this operation for the period of 2005 - 09. He got a reply on 2nd June 2009 for the same. Following is the list of the expenditure:

2005-06: Rs 3,42,18,773
2006-07: Rs 3,80,17,563
2007-08: Rs 4,59,29,855
2008-09: Rs 4,19,30,466

According to the Civic Services Guide, BBMP uses three methods to control mosquito breeding: Chemical, biological and Minor engineering methods. Weekly spraying operation is supposed to be carried out in mosquito breeding areas. Wells, tanks and lakes should be stalked with Gambusia fish. It is a freshwater fish also called mosquito fish. These fish feed on aquatic larval and pupal stages of mosquitoes.

However, most Bangaloreans either dismiss BBMP's claim or are unaware that the corporation has a mosquito eradication drive.

Anil Kumar who lives in Ashwini layout, Ejipura says that a weekly spraying and fogging is done in his ward but the rest of the wards have not seen this happening any time in the recent past. Devayani Kulkarni who has been living in Koramangala 8th Block for the past two years declines BBMP's claims and says, "I have never seen any spraying or fogging in this area in the past two years."

Dr. Jayaprakash, BBMP's Medical Health Officer for Koramangala says, "Spraying and fogging is done daily in Koramangala covering each ward each day (ward 67, 68 and 69 respectively)." He further explains that an insecticide named Temephos is used in spraying and King Fog is used for fogging.

Stagnant water

Spraying is supposed to be done regularly in drains and stagnant water (pic: Meera K)

"This is something new to us," says B L G Rao, Co-ordinator of the Jayanagar First Block Organisation of Residents for Clean Environment. Rao has been living in Jayanagar for more than 15 years. He says that people in his area are struggling with the rising number of mosquitoes.

Same is the case in BTM Layout where residents fail to recall the last time they saw any mosquito eradication operations. “We never knew that BBMP undertakes mosquito eradication also,” says A Vidyashankar, President of BTM II Stage Permanent Residents Association. Vidyashankar claims that he has not seen any fogging or spraying in the past one year in BTM.

However, people living in other areas are facing a rise in mosquitoes. T R Shastry, claims that he has never seen any mosquito repellent van in his area in the recent past.

"This is purely misuse of public money," he says.

The health officers in the Jayanagar BBMP ward office claim that weekly fogging is done in JP Nagar and Jayanagar. The officers however, refused to disclose their names.

Dr. Kalpana, BBMP’s Medical Health Officer, Madiwala also refused to disclose anything about the mosquito eradication programme in her area.

People living in RT Nagar, Sarjapura, Shivajinagar and many other areas also have similar stories to tell. A N Vittal, resident of Kammanahalli describes, “Last week, I saw a three-wheeler tempo on the main road. There was a lot of smoke coming from the vehicle. That's when I realised they were spraying something for mosquitoes. I've never seen it before anytime recently.”

"How many things do you complain about? Daily, I make phone calls to complain about garbage, water supply and all. No action is taken for anything", he quips.

L T Gayathri, BBMP's Chief Health Officer claims that regular mosquito eradication operations are carried out throughout the city. "Fogging is being done once a week in the affected areas because daily fogging could lead to respiratory problems in people," she says. She further adds, "It is not possible to eradicate the mosquito menace. We are doing our best to control the menace and prevent vector-borne diseases".

Supriya Khandekar
10 Jun 2009

Schools suffer without water supply - Bangalore - Cities - The Times of India

Schools suffer without water supply - Bangalore - Cities - The Times of India
Schools suffer without water supply
9 Jun 2009, 0619 hrs IST, TNN

Bangalore : The government school in Cox Town is going through hellish times. Three institutions on the premises -- Tamil and Kannada schools and a degree college started two years ago have a combined student strength of 700. But, the school hasn't been getting water for the past six years. To add insult to injury, the Tamil school got a water bill for Rs 1.34 lakh and the Kannada school got a water bill for Rs 51,000. Apparently, it's the arrears for non-payment of bills over the past six years.

The Department of Public Instruction (DPI) has to release funds to pay such bills. However, the school's repeated complaints to the department were met with stock responses. "Every year, we write to the DPI asking it to pay the bills. But the common refrain is: no funds," said a school official. The DPI sends officials to inspect the school every year. Somehow, they overlook this problem every time.

The Tamil and Kannada schools are co-ed institutions. Students and teachers have been bringing water from home. During the six hours they spend in school, most schoolchildren hardly go to the toilet. "We go behind the bathrooms," said a boy, because the bathrooms are not functional, except one for the staff and another for students. The girls said they try not to answer nature's call, unless it's absolutely necessary. Most students are pre-teens or teens and relieving themselves anywhere would only invite leering stares and deeply embarrassing.

A few years ago, former MLA Nirmal Surana built 10 toilets at the school. Now, they are dilapidated with no water or users. Teachers too are in a fix as they have to lock the bathroom and use it only when necessary.

The only saving grace is a borewell outside. An overhead water tank donated by former MP H T Sangliana three years ago is used to store water. The children use this water through the day, albeit sparingly.

Suprisingly, when TOI spoke with commissioner of public instruction G Kumar Naik, he didn't about the problem. He said: "I'll check with the deputy director of public instruction concerned. If it's a fact, I'll take it up, both with the DPPI and BWSSB."


Even the Vidhana Soudha is supplied water only on payment. The rule is uniform for all non-commercial buildings as the KPTCL supplies us with power at a commercial rate. There is no scope under existing laws to waive arrears. The only exception is probably genuine water disputes with domestic connections. The executive engineer can waive arrears/ interest on arrears up to Rs 10,000 on a case-by-case basis. For such schools, the education department has to pay.

BWSSB spokesman

UTVi Life: Water table concerns

UTVi Life: Water table concerns

MUMBAI: Over the years, developers went all out to tap the growing
demand for housing and office spaces. And such large scale developments
in land starved metros meant filling up of water bodies like this one.
But this in turn has put immense pressure on the already low ground
water table in the cities.

A case in point is Gurgaon where the water table has gone down as
low as 40m. Thanks to the scores of high-rises that dot the satellite

And then you have Alpha G Corp's Gurgaon One project, an
eco-friendly residential complex in the same area. And thanks to water
conservation initiatives taken up here that has brought the ground
water table across this 1000 acre complex up by more than 10metres.    

For residents like Supreet, this translates into an improved quality of her daily life.

Supreet, MNC professional said, "I have spent a lot of time in Saket
and RK Puram. So I have seen the kind of water shortage problem that
these areas face. We used to get water from 6-8 in the morning &
then from 5-8 in the evening. But since the time we have shifted here,
there is no much problem. Regular supply, because of the systems in

So what exactly are these systems that make sure that residents here get regular water supply and minimize wastage?

The project has a rain water harvesting system in place that helps recharge the ground water table.

Also, the sewage treatment plant recycles waste water which is then used in the lawns and in the toilets.  

In fact so crucial it is to reduce wastage for long term growth and
even survival that govt. is using both incentives & regulation to
encourage water conservation.

Ashok Jaitly, The Energy and Resources Institute said, "In fact
state governments have introduced a scheme where they provide financial
assistance to people who want to build RWH structures. In Chennai, it's
become mandatory. Your building plan is not passed if you don't have a
RWH structure".

Now if you thought you need huge resources to set up a RWH system,
take a cue from architect Vishwanathan. This Bangalore based architect
has developed his own water conservation system right in his own

Vishwanathan, Architect said, "We pick about 1mn liters of storm
water, send it into a pit which goes around the well to about 10feet
depth and all the water goes through a filter of sand & gravel
& gets into the bore well itself about 350feet deep. The water
table here has come up by 80 feet in the last 8yrs".

Now you don't need to set up these systems to make a beginning, small measures at home can get you big savings.

For instance fixing leaking taps can result in saving up to over 10,000 litres a year. 

You can water your lawns in the morning rather than later in the day and save up to 1200 litres annually.

Using tumblers and not running water while brushing your teeth can save up to 11 liters of water each time 

Also, did you know that by fitting low flush toilets, you can save
nearly 70 % of water flushed and also cut down indoor water use by
almost one third.

Those were some simple yet smart tips to minimize water wastage. And
if your complex, like this one has water recycle systems in place, then
you can reduce the pressure on ground water and automatically bring
down your water bills.

Work on airport city to start in 2010 The Hindu : Front Page :

The Hindu : Front Page : Work on airport city to start in 2010
Work on airport city to start in 2010

K.V. Subramanya

BIAL holding talks with developers; it is seen as revenue-generating venture

The concepts of airport cities and aeronautical SEZs are fast catching on in India

City will form a major chunk of the airport’s non-aeronautical revenues in coming years

CHICKABALLAPUR: Bangalore International Airport Ltd. (BIAL) will begin work on the proposed airport city (aerotropolis) in the first half of 2010.

BIAL is holding talks with developers of the project, sources in BIAL, which operates Bengaluru International Airport at Devanahalli, told The Hindu here on Friday.

BIAL’s decision to develop an airport city is in line with the increasing attention being paid to aerotropolises the world over.

An aerotropolis is a city in which the layout, infrastructure and economy are centred on the airport.

According to sources, the airport city project has provisions for premium land for commercial real-estate development such as office parks, retail, entertainment and hospitality, in addition to the land reserved for a rail link to the city.

BIAL envisions the airport city to be a “flourishing destination in itself; people would not only come here to board flights but also to relax, do business and shop,” sources said.

On the other hand, the airport city project is also an important revenue-generating venture for BIAL, which had suffered a loss of Rs. 22 crore a month when it completed six months of commercial operations in November 2008.

The then Chief Executive Officer of BIAL, Albert Brunner, had hinted at the company’s plans to enter into the real-estate business to augment its revenue in the long run.

Though sources were tight-lipped on BIAL’s latest financial situation, they said, “We have just completed a year of operations and still stabilising.

“However, the bulk revenues will come from aeronautical revenues, of which user development fees (UDF) forms a significant component.

“The Union Government permitted BIAL to collect an ad hoc domestic UDF of Rs. 260 a passenger from January 16, 2009. We are yet awaiting the final UDF amount.”

The concepts of airport cities and aeronautical SEZs, sources said, were fast catching on in India and would form a major chunk of the airport’s non-aeronautical revenues in the coming years.

Large investments are required to create infrastructure such as roads, water supply and a sewage system for the airport city.

The timeframe for them to break even is long and it could take 10 to 15 years to begin yielding profits, the sources said.

However, the airport has been earning revenues from parking, advertising, retail and food and beverage, which are considered traditional forms of non-aeronautical revenue streams, sources said.

50 p.c. of Cauvery water lost in transit: The Hindu : Front Page

The Hindu : Front Page : 50 p.c. of Cauvery water lost in transit
50 p.c. of Cauvery water lost in transit

Divya Gandhi

Bangalore ranks fourth in the country in ‘unaccounted-for water’

Bangalore: In a city where piped water supply is largely erratic or absent, where women spend at least two hours a day fetching water from public taps and where groundwater is overexploited, here comes another shocking statistic: up to 50 per cent of Cauvery water never reaches those it is meant for.

Much of Bangalore’s piped water is lost in transmission, mainly due to leakage across the network of pipes, from distribution mains, service pipes to stand posts, according to the Environment Status Report for Bangalore prepared by Environmental Management and Policy Research Institute for the Department of Forest, Ecology and Environment.

Of the gross supply of 1,059 MLD sourced primarily from the Cauvery, only 550 MLD is billed, leaving 509 MLD as “unaccounted-for water” (UFW). This translates to 48 per cent of the water supply, making Bangalore’s UFW the fourth highest among cities in India, says the report, to be made public shortly.

The report attributes the water loss to poor operation and maintenance of the network by the Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB) as well as unauthorised connections. “Our study used BWSSB’s data until 2007. At the high rate at which UFW has been increasing, we can predict that the figure is currently 50 per cent,” C. Nanjundaiah, Associate Professor at the Institute of Social and Economic Change and author of the study, told The Hindu.

The gap between the production of water and its consumption has grown significantly in less than 20 years. Unaccounted water has increased from 16 per cent (62 MLD) to 48 per cent (509 MLD) between 1990 and 2007, even as the supply to the city has increased from 375 MLD (1990-91) to 1,059 MLD (2006-07).

This means that the per capita availability of water for domestic use is highly stressed: at just 75 LPCD (litres per person per day), the figure is half the World Health Organisation’s stipulated requirement of 150 LPCD. Groundwater, not surprisingly, is overexploited, and there are no few than 80,000 private borewells in the city. The 30 to 35 per cent of the population, representing urban poor, have limited access to water, and half of them are fully dependent on groundwater for drinking and cooking.

Water supply to the city is expensive, the report points out. As much as 65 per cent of BSWWB’s expenditure goes towards power bills for pumping treated water from a 100 km distance to the city (which is, besides, at a significant elevation) and in the distributing network. The cost of water production and supply is the highest in the country at Rs. 23.13 per kilolitre. Mumbai pays Rs. 2.17 and Chennai Rs. 5.73.

Rather than depending on water drawn from several km away, “conservation of surface and groundwater is the immediate need,” the report recommends. This includes rainwater harvesting, restoration of lakes, treatment of waste water, and the conservation of T.G. Halli reservoir which supplies 120 MLD annually.

A senior official from BWSSB who said he “was not aware of the figures” pointed out that unaccounted water had little to do with leakage in pipes, but because of unauthorised connections and public taps. “We have a situation where there are illegal connections every 30 feet. Even so, the percentage cannot be 50 per cent; it could be 37 per cent,” the official said.

First `Rain Water Harvesting Park’

First `Rain Water Harvesting Park’
First `Rain Water Harvesting Park’

N R Madhusudhan
First Published : 06 Jun 2009 07:53:27 AM IST
Last Updated :

BANGALORE: The Garden City is all set to become an abode of a park of a different kind as Bangalore Water Supply and Swerage Board (BWSSB) is planning to construct the country’s first ever ‘Rain Water Harvesting Theme Park.’ The park would be constructed at the BWSSB land in Jayanagar 5th block and would be developed into a major land mark.

An eco-friendly building and an amphi-theatre would be constructed to house the offices and exhibit various concepts. A film on rain water harvesting in English and Kannada would also be screened.

The rain water that falls on the terrace would be purified in a pop-up filter and diverted into the pump or a well for reuse. A portion of the water would be diverted to the well or a dry bore-well for ground water restoration.

The techniques of rain water purification using gravel, sand and charcoal would also be displayed.

A BWSSB’s official on condition of anonymity said, “The park would be the first of its kind in the country. Rajasthan and Tamil Nadu have given more importance to rain water harvesting but could not come up with this idea.

Close errant hospitals, says angry Lok Adalat - Bangalore - Cities - The Times of India

Close errant hospitals, says angry Lok Adalat - Bangalore - Cities - The Times of India
Close errant hospitals, says angry Lok Adalat
5 Jun 2009, 0440 hrs IST, TNN

BANGALORE: The Lok Adalat hearing the 1998 PIL regarding water supply to Bellandur on Thursday came down heavily on KSPCB for not complying its order regarding hospitals without ETPs (effluent treatment plants).

The Lok Adalat headed by Justice K L Manjunath gave time till June 18 as the last chance to the Board to take action against hospitals and warned that if action was not taken, its chairman would have to face the consequences.

"We have been granting time from the past three years. You have not taken any concrete action. It shows the inefficiency of the Board. If any hospital has not set up any effluent treatment plants, close them. No mercy for any polluter... You are, in a way, abetting this crime... Is the government there to protect the health of the public or not?" the bench strongly observed.

KSPCB counsel D Nagaraj told the Adalat that of 47 hospitals (100 beds and above) in the city, 30 private hospitals have complied or are in the process of complying. Of 17 government hospitals, only eight have complied and K C General Hospital
, Malleswaram, General Hospital, Jayanagar, Hajee Sir Ismail Sait Ghousia Hospital, Tasker Town, SDS TB Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Chest Diseases, Hosur Road, Bowring and Lady Curzon Hospital in Shivajinagar, Minto Hospital, Chamarajpet, Vani Vilas Hospital, K R Road, Victoria Hospital and Kidwai Hospital have not taken any steps to set up ETPs so far.

'Afforestation immediate action point' - Bangalore - Cities - The Times of India

'Afforestation immediate action point' - Bangalore - Cities - The Times of India
Afforestation immediate action point'
5 Jun 2009, 0438 hrs IST, TNN

BANGALORE: To solve the water crisis in the city, the Institute for Social and Economic Change (ISEC) suggests massive afforestation programmes and complete removal of encroachments. Availability of drinking water in the city is likely to be hit in the coming years.

"Karnataka and Tamil Nadu should create a fund for afforestation. The genesis of deforestation started in 1854, when British authorities felled teak for the Royal Navy. Today, the plantations have eaten into virgin forest areas. If things don't change, Bangalore will have to rely on wastewater recycling and other means," said C Nanjundaiah, associate professor with ISEC. For the report, he had drafted a paper on water.

Groundwater situation

Bangalore urban draws a whopping 20,7000 million litre per acre (mla). "While the total BBMP area is 1 lakh and 97,684 acre, we are drawing 1,03,333 mla. The water recharge in this area is only 71,000 mla," he said.

"River Vrishabhavathi is filled with pollutants at levels higher than permissible limits. The quality assessment of 77% of water samples collected from different parts of the river is unsatisfactory for consumption. Also, the rising `unaccounted for water supply' has risen from 16% in 1991 to 48% now. This may be the starting point of all water woes in Bangalore," he explained.

The report also covers environment-related sectors like industries, air pollution, energy, health and forests. The studies showed high levels of suspended particulate matter (SPM) at Graphite India and around Victoria Hospital. The acceptable level of SPM is 70 micrograms per mcube, but it is 500 micron grams per mcube at both locations.

At many areas, respirable suspended particulate matter (RSPM) showed 200 micrograms per mcube when the accepted level is 50 micrograms per mcube. The main cause of pollution is automobile emission. ISEC has recommended the use of CNG on a priority basis.

"Afforestation within the city is also an immediate action point to balance the microclimate and rising temperature," the report said.

Other recommendations submitted to the government to deal with water crisis are the new groundwater use and monitoring Bill, increase in water tariff as per income slabs and addition of treated water into reservoirs. There is a potential of harvesting 20 to 50 MLD water and reusing 172 to 220 MLD

Satellite imagery solves a 400-year-old mystery

Satellite imagery solves a 400-year-old mystery

Rohith BR / DNA

Friday, June 5, 2009 1:51 IST

Satellite photos of Talakad, an ancient city located on the banks of the Cauvery, near Mysore, have found several man-made canals which, archaeologists say, lend weight to the famous curse that brought this temple destination down.

According to legend, Talakad was swept away by sand dunes after it was cursed by Alamelamma -- wife of Tirumala II, the defeated king of Srirangapatnam --who killed herself after Mysore king Raja Wodeyar took over in 1610.

Before dying she said Talakad would become sand, Malangi (a nearby village) a whirlpool and the Mysore Rajas will fail to beget heirs, a curse which is still said to be acting on the royal family.

The research, which was conducted by the National Institute of Advanced Studies (NIAS) in collaboration with the state archaeology department, Karnataka, found a well-developed canal system extending a few kilometres from Talakad to Cauvery. "We analysed the site through geospatial maps recorded by a satellite using infrared and radar technology," said MB Rajani, the project head. "A GPS survey was done on the site for more accuracy. By analysingdata and comparing it with historical evidence, we were able to arrive at the findings."

The findings support the 400-year-old curse theory, but experts are unsure how such a well-designed and fertile city, which had an elaborate water supply system, could fall victim to sand dunes. Archaeologists believe the canals are only the tip of the iceberg.
Supporting the NIAS finding is an inscription found at Malingi. "The inscription says land near the temples of Talakad was marshland.

There was no water source in Talakad. The water could have been brought into the city through the canals," an archaeological department official said. Past excavations, he said, have revealed water reservoirs in the temple city.

Get ready for a heavy monsoon - Bangalore - Cities - The Times of India

Get ready for a heavy monsoon - Bangalore - Cities - The Times of India
28 May 2009, 0159 hrs IST, TNN
Bangalore: Pre-monsoon showers and news that the monsoon has just hit the Kerala coast, have triggered the worst fears among
Bangaloreans. It's best to be prepared for more rain than usual, says the Met department.

"There are chances of heavy rain in the first month of the monsoon. The city is likely to receive more than moderate rain,'' Met director A Muthuchami told The Times of India. He explained the impact, "There will be one spell of heavy rain in the next two/three days. And another following it. A week of thunderstorms may follow, to settle down to drizzles for another couple of weeks."

With old pipelines and an underground drainage system that's still under renovation, the BWSSB hopes to redress many of the flooding issues during the monsoon, with 30 additional jetting machines to pump out flooded sewerage waters.

Last year, BWSSB embarked on a massive manhole cleaning drive and covered 60,000 of them. This year, the drive has started again, with workers notching up 30 to 50 manholes a day. "We are trying to speed it up before the monsoon completely sets in,'' a spokesperson for BWSSB said.

One of the major issues BWSSB faces is: in 80% of houses, water stagnating on terraces is let into the underground drainage system (UGD). The UGD has the capacity to manage only waste water. The excess pressure on the system by flooding rain water leads to frequent overflowing of chamber lines.

"We urge all residents to channelise rain water flow from their terraces to a network connected to adjoining storm water drains,'' a BWSSB official said. The Board still considers places like HSR Layout, some parts of old airport areas in HAL vulnerable to floods.

Reacting to fears of sewage water contaminating drinking water supply, he said, "The issue cannot be completely ruled out, considering that they run parallel to each other. In case of UGD, only reactive measures can be taken and not precautionary. We have changed old pipelines in many areas, including Bharathinagar, where we spent Rs 3 crore to change the UGD system, and 90% of the work is complete. We have changed some pipelines in Shivajinagar as well.'' Any floods and the Board hopes to provide immediate remedial measures.