Dying Hauz Khas lake to get a new lease of life
Hauz Khas Lake, a water body in the middle of south Delhi that has been dying a slow death over the last few years, will soon get a new lease of life.
The Delhi Development Authority (DDA) is going to undertake the work to rejuvenate, conserve and revive the water body along with environmental engineer Tarun Sebastian Nanda and public participation.
The landowning agency will be using constructed or floating wetlands for treating sewage in the drain.
“The water in the lake comes through a sewage treatment plant (STP) in Mehrauli. It gets polluted in between due to leakages and sewer water entering into the channel,” said a DDA official.
The miniature floating wetlands will naturally purify the water. The plants purify the water by eradicating algae and absorbing nitrates, phosphates and other metals, he said. In the floating wetland plants grown on a mat built from wire mesh, drainage pipes and used water bottles to filter the water.
Constructed wetlands are an example of phytoremediation and rely on natural processes such as microbes, filtration, absorption and uptake of nutrients into wetland plants, to purify water.
“No chemical will be used in the process,” he said.
The DDA has adopted the system as it is a natural system and will cost less.
“It is not feasible to install Sewage Treatment Plant (STP) everywhere as it is costlier. Therefore, we are going for a method that is cheaper and effective as well,” he said.
Besides cleaning the water, the process will stop solid waste and sludge from entering the lake.
The work will start in the next three months and DDA claims that it will complete the cleaning in a year. The project will cost around Rs 80 lakh.
To inculcate civic sense and help, workshops will be orgnaised in the area in which common people will be asked to take part and learn the cleaning process.
“If the people, who use the area, show interest in its upkeep, the programme will show better results. The experts will not be there at all the time to take care of water bodies. If common people learn the basics of cleaning and restoring the river, they could teach others and the project will be more sustainable,” he said.
Hauz Khas lake, which is inside Hauz Khas Park, is spread over an area of 400 acres and has several people from across Delhi visiting everyday for morning walks and recreation.
It has four major landscape features — the Deer Park, the District Park, the Rose Garden and a sports field. These are inter-connected by woodlands consisting of man-made plantations and degraded natural thorny scrub. It has archaeological monuments, a lake and duck Lake of cemented water body.