With the municipal corporation looking for alternate sources of water, a non-governmental organisation (NGO) has come forward with a plan that can minimise, to a certain level, the unprecedented water crisis the city is facing.
NGO Raichel Joseph Foundation has put a proposal before the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) for the revival of six lakes in north Mumbai through corporate funding.
A delegation led by Member of Parliament Sanjay Nirupam and the foundation’s trustee Sherley Singh met Additional Municipal Commissioner in-charge of western suburbs, Manisha Mhaiskar, on Monday to discuss the plan.
The six lakes are Pancharangi Bhujal Talao in Malad, Lotus lake on Malad-Marve road, Charkop Talao, Eksar lake in Borivli, a lake on Malad-Marve road and the Gaothan Talao in Madhgaon. Currently these lakes are either dying or have been dumped with debris or are badly managed.
“There are about 170 lakes across the city, we will begin with these six on a pilot basis and then move on to the others,” said Singh.
BMC will have to formulate a law so that private parties can take over the lakes for developing them and then hand them back to the various agencies that own them.
The revival is planned phasewise — the cleaning, widening and desilting is the first step, creating percolation pits and connecting rainwater harvesting plants from the vicinity to the lakes and beautification will be done in later stages. The whole process will be completed in three to four months.
The cost of reviving a lake will be between Rs 2-5 crore, depending on its area and the technology used. For this, a No-Objection Certificate will be required from various agencies.
“A lot of corporate parties have come forward to fund the revival and we are helping them with getting permissions from different agencies,” said Nirupam.
These corporates will be given advertising space on the premises of the lakes.
“To begin with, the proposal looks to be feasible, but the modalities will have to be worked out,” said Mhaiskar.
The water from these lakes will be used for non-potable purpose. More than 75 per cent of the city’s water needs are for non-potable purposes.
“There are many water bodies that can be revived. Though the ownership of the lakes is with different agencies, things will be worked out,” said Suburban Collector Vishwas Patil.