Restoring lakes

the Udhagamandalam and Kodaikanal lakes in Tamil Nadu have been chosen for eco-restoration as part of the National Lake Conservation Programme ( nlcp ). An outlay of Rs 40 crores has been approved by the Centre and of this, nearly Rs 25 crores will be earmarked for the Udhagamandalam lake.

The programme, to be implemented as a Centrally-sponsored scheme during the Ninth Plan, covers 10 lakes in the country including the Dal Lake in Jammu and Kashmir and the Hussainsagar Lake in Andhra Pradesh, officials say.

The nlcp broadly envisages pollution abatement of the two water bodies, besides improving them from the viewpoint of ecology and tourism. The project components are conservation, restoration of forest cover and improvement of treatment system for sewage and solid waste, including vermi-compost disposal.

Due to intensive agriculture, animal husbandry and opening of commercial establishments, the two lakes have come under enormous pressure, leading to increasing siltation and eutrophication.