South Biodiversity Park behind Kalindi Colony coming up soon
A team of scientists, led by ecologist CR Babu, who heads the Centre for Environmental Management of Degraded Ecosystems (CEMDE) at Delhi University, is slated to work on the project.Updated: Apr 12, 2019 07:46 IST
Delhiites rejoice. In a week’s time, work will begin to redevelop 115 hectares of sewage sludge ponds into the city’s seventh natural reserve, the South Biodiversity Park.
Currently, the area— next to the DND flyover, just behind Kalindi Colony on the western bank of Yamuna river—receives wastewater from nine unauthorised colonies, the biggest of which is Kilokri Village, and has become a mosquito breeding ground.
A team of scientists, led by ecologist CR Babu, who heads the Centre for Environmental Management of Degraded Ecosystems (CEMDE) at Delhi University, is slated to work on the project.
The Delhi Development Authority (DDA), which owns the land, has allocated about ₹2 crore for the project which has a five-year deadline.
The decision was announced on Thursday at a meeting of the Yamuna Pollution Monitoring Committee, set up by the National Green Tribunal (NGT), headed by former Delhi chief secretary Shailaja Chandra and expert member BS Sajwan. Officials from the DDA, Delhi Jal Board and the South Municipal Corporation of Delhi (SDMC) were also present at the meeting.
“The 115 ha area near DND, which is a part of the Yamuna floodplain, will be revived through the Constructed Wetland System (CWS) employed successfully at Neela Hauz lake in 2017. This is a completely natural sewage water treatment method which uses specific plant species and microbes to purify grey water,” Babu said.
At present, the site is full of grass and water hyacinth. It is being used as an illegal dump for construction debris and as an open defecation ground by slum dwellers, a DDA official said.
“This (CWS) rules out the need for an expensive sewage treatment plant. The biodiversity parks we are creating across the city are not just to sanitize polluted areas, but to turn them into rich forests that revive wildlife, birdlife and flora of the region,” the DDA official said.
Similar projects are being planned at the Hindon Cut and Rajghat Drain, he added.
At present, the Capital has six biodiversity parks—the Yamuna Biodiversity Park at Wazirabad, the Kamla Nehru Ridge near Civil Lines, the Aravalli Biodiversity Park at Vasant Vihar, Tilpath valley near Sainik Farms, one behind Tughlakabad Fort and the Neela Hauz Lake.
Thursday’s meeting was called on a complaint filed by the Kalindi Residents Welfare Association president Sanjay Narayen, who had alleged inaction by authorities regarding the vacant 115 hectares of land, which had become a heavy mosquito breeding ground.
Colony resident Paresh Nath said, “We have been pursuing the issue in National Green Tribunal since 2015.”