After a lukewarm response from devotees, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) will not create 19 artificial lakes as it had announced.
Earlier this month, Mayor Shubha Raul had announced to create more lakes in areas where the eco-friendly immersions had got good response last year.
The civic body had asked the citizens’ groups to approach them if they wanted to have an artificial lake in their locality.
But, the civic officials said the response was not encouraging.
“We requested the people to chose the eco-friendly immersion and the BMC would give them financial assistance. But people did not show any interest,” said Sudhir Naik, deputy municipal commissioner in charge of Ganesh festival.
Now, the BMC has stalled its plan to have additional lakes and will reduce the number from that of last year. “There were less immersions in artificial lakes in some areas. This has forced us to bring down the number of lakes this year from 25 to 17,” he said.
So there will be no artificial lakes in Bandra, Dharavi and Girgaum. “We spend Rs 3 lakh on one lake and with about 10 the immersions in a lake, it becomes expensive for the BMC,” said Naik.
The citizens’ groups are not happy with the BMC’s move.
“We were told that the BMC will not create artificial lakes this year. We need to promote the eco-friendly immersions instead of reducing the number of lakes,” said Anandini Thakoor, chairperson of Khar Residents’ Association.
The association will now get an artificial lake at their own expense.
The municipal corporation had asked the citizens to resort to the eco-friendly methods to avoid adding to the traffic congestion and water and noise pollution on immersion days.