About the Project
ABOUT PUTTENAHALLI LAKE
* Puttenahalli Lake lies in JP Nagar 7th Phase, Bangalore, in the the vicinity of two residential enclaves, L&T South City and Brigade Millennium, and is sometimes confused with the significantly bigger Jarganahalli Lake (also called Sarakki Lake/ Puttenahalli Lake) and the Yelahanka Puttenahalli Lake.
* Once a 13 acre pristine lake, the lake shrunk and became a marshy garbage dump due to exploitation and neglect.
* Starting in 2008, nearby residents campaigned to save the lake. It took them a while but they finally got the municipality (Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike - BBMP) to restore the lake in 2010-11.
* Puttenahalli Neighbourhood Lake Improvement Trust (PNLIT) was formed in June 2010 with Usha Rajagopalan (a writer), Arathi Manay (a market researcher), Prasanna K. Vynatheya (a software architect) and O.P. Ramaswamy (a chartered engineer) as the first trustees.
* In May 2011, PNLIT was formally given charge by the BBMP to maintain Puttenahalli Lake. The nurturing project is for a period of 3 years (May 2011-2014).
* This project is an execution in the field of Preserving our “Public Open Spaces”, specifically a lake in an urban setting in Bangalore city, through citizen participation.
* PNLIT is the first citizens’ group to assume responsibility for nurturing a lake (Puttenahalli Lake) in the city. PNLIT’s focus is on reviving lakes, using the experience that it has with this project as the model.
* With increasing urbanization and consequent demand for land, hundreds of the “Public Open Spaces” water bodies have been sacrificed for “developmental/ infrastructural requirements” of the city. This has led to shortage of Public Open Spaces for people, depletion of ground water, change in city temperature and pollution levels and destruction of bird habitats.
* PNLIT is uniquely positioned – Nurturing the lake into a habitat for birds (as it was in the past) rather than a clean-looking water body (as city lakes are generally expected to be). Within a year of its restoration, Puttenahalli Lake has gained recognition as an avian habitat with over 50 species of birds spotted in and around the lake.
* PNLIT’s inclusive approach encourages public participation which is the key to sustaining not just Puttenahalli Lake but all Public Open Spaces. The public has a stake in the well being of the space by
- understanding its importance in the eco-system of the area OR
- making a financial contribution towards its nurturing OR
- actively using it.
* The project receives no funding from the local government. Therefore, currently, the expenses for nurturing the lake are being met primarily from donations/ contributions made by well wishers.
* In another 2-3 years, the habitat at Puttenahalli Lake should have stabilised. The lake will then be on “maintain mode” and should not need continuous infusion of funds for its sustenance.
ROLE OF THE PROJECT
* Providing “Public Open Spaces”
“Community” needs actual lung spaces and not just malls and the virtual world.
* Preservation of “Public Open Spaces” in a context of rapid population and infrastructure growth (usually the responsibility of local administration)
Well-preserved and patronised Public Open Spaces are less susceptible to being taken away for ‘developmental’ work.
Preservation in a way that will benefit the eco-system and restore the habitats of avian, aquatic and other life forms.
* Community participation in the preservation of “Public Open Spaces”
Changing indifference – people care about their own homes but not about public spaces
Our project demonstrates that citizens’ groups can make a positive difference by their active involvement in civic affairs (like restoring the dying lakes and tanks) in their respective localities.
Eternal vigilance and maintenance will prevent encroachment by vested interests.
Each area requires but a few vigilant citizens who can collect all available information on such commons and make them easily accessible to the local citizens.
Encroachments on storm drains and reckless disposal of sewage water into lakes will then become difficult. By assuming such social responsibility, citizens become aware of the need to maintain proper storm water drainage in their localities, conserve drinking water and learn to manage their waste. Such measures will avert the “tragedy of the commons” affecting lakes and tanks.
* Funding for preservation of “Public Open Spaces”
Much of the money the BBMP gets goes in building roads and flyovers. The budgetary allocation for rejuvenation of lakes by the BBMP/ other governmental bodies is inadequate for all the lakes.
As of Dec 2011, out of the 132 lakes identified within the jurisdiction of BBMP for development, only 17 have been taken up for development. Apart from a budget allocation of Rs 90 Cr for ongoing works, the budget for new lakes is Rs 40 Cr for 2011-12 (Ref: B.V. Satish “Status Report on Lake Development by BBMP” 2011)
After rejuvenation, nurturing of the lake also requires funds, which the government has been unable to support.
With citizens’ groups raising additional money and, more importantly, ensuring its proper utilization, we can rejuvenate and nurture more lakes, and other public spaces.
* Successfully revive Puttenahalli Lake and institutionalise the “Puttenahalli Lake Model” for the preservation of “Public Open Spaces”
- Providing green cover
- Providing clean even track for walking, jogging around the periphery of the lake
- Stabilising, preserving and protecting bird habitat in an urban setting. As a part of the "Puttenahalli Lake Model“, establishing guidelines that will institutionalize our learning, making it replicable in other lakes (Dos and Don'ts of lake restoration to make it an avian habitat).
- Recharging ground water, water conservation
- Educating citizens on the importance of preserving natural resources as habitats for birds and other life
* Leverage the revival of Puttenahalli Lake
- Encourage and assist other citizens across the city and in other cities to restore lakes in their areas, in a way that will bring back the birds
- Encourage people’s participation in protection and preservation of other public spaces and other spheres such as Solid Waste Management, enforcing civic discipline, monitoring civic services, etc.
* Make the local administration more accountable to citizens.
MAKING THE LAKE "SELF-SUSTAINING"
* The current MOU with BBMP does not permit commercial use of the lake.
* Over a period of time, we hope to generate enough revenues to fund the future expenses of the up-keep of the lake by some of the following:
- Conducting nature walks for school children and other groups
- Conducting nature photography sessions
- Adoption of trees
- Donations to commemorate family events like birthdays, anniversaries, graduations, etc.
- Sale of organic manure for gardening
- Sale of organic vegetables/fruits, medicinal plants
- Nursery for home gardening enthusiasts
- Sale of PNLIT cloth bags
- Bringing out a coffee table book on birds and other life at the lake
- Building up a corpus fund
Project Action Plan
Project Action Plan
1Nurturing the lake: - Maintaining the lake and the plants around it - Planting new saplings - Ensuring that the lake vegetation that provides nesting space for birds and fishes are protected - Ensuring that sewage and other waste effluents do not enter the lake - Increasing inflow of rain water into the lake
Nurturing the lake:
- Maintaining the lake and the plants around it
- Planting new saplings
- Ensuring that the lake vegetation that provides nesting space for birds and fishes are protected
- Ensuring that sewage and other waste effluents do not enter the lake
- Increasing inflow of rain water into the lake
2Public participation: - Organizing lake visits, nature walks, bird watching sessions - Getting volunteers to help in gardening, staff supervision
- Organizing lake visits, nature walks, bird watching sessions
- Getting volunteers to help in gardening, staff supervision
3Waste handling: - Managing the waste generated at the lake, in the lake area itself - Educating people about the importance of recycling and keeping the surroundings litter and plastic free
- Managing the waste generated at the lake, in the lake area itself
- Educating people about the importance of recycling and keeping the surroundings litter and plastic free
4Formalising the "Puttenahalli Lake Model“: - Establishing guidelines that will institutionalize our learning, making it replicable in other lakes (Dos and Donts of lake restoration to make it an avian habitat)
Formalising the "Puttenahalli Lake Model“:
- Establishing guidelines that will institutionalize our learning, making it replicable in other lakes (Dos and Donts of lake restoration to make it an avian habitat)
Who will this help Rise
1. Puttenahalli Lake and the many kinds of life it supports (trees, birds, aquatic and other life) - the immediate beneficiary of our project
3. Local administration/ Governmental bodies
How will this help them Rise?
water connection from borewell and waterline around the lake ,water pump,solar lights,sets of gardening tools,wheelbarrows/ trolleys,de-weeding equipment/ boat/ coracle (to be used for cleaning, de-weeding) ,shredder-crusher,nesting boxes, perches, tree logs, feeders to attract birds,drinking water dispenser,diversion channels to get more rain water into the lake ,educational sighting boards,saplings of trees and shrubs,extra composting facilities
Trustee at Puttenahalli Neighbourhood Lake Improvement Trust (PNLIT). A market researcher by profession, I try to "Be the change you want to see in the world". With PNLIT's citizen participation in local governance, there is a strong opportunity to 'be' and 'see' that change.
This Project Needs
3 volunteers for supervising the staff
10 volunteers for raising donations/ funds for monthly expenses and for building a corpus
2 volunteers/ staff as watchmen
4 volunteers for periodic de-weeding of the lake bed
1 water connection from borewell and waterline around the lake
1 water pump
6 solar lights
3 sets of gardening tools
2 wheelbarrows/ trolleys
1 de-weeding equipment/ boat/ coracle (to be used for cleaning, de-weeding)
10 nesting boxes, perches, tree logs, feeders to attract birds
1 drinking water dispenser
2 diversion channels to get more rain water into the lake
50 educational sighting boards
200 saplings of trees and shrubs
2 extra composting facilities