Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Haryana claim of reviving its lakes before Games hollow

A year after Haryana chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda promised revival of Badhkal and Surajkund lakes before the Commonwealth Games; it now seems that the two water bodies may not be ready to attract tourists during the sporting extravaganza.

So far, no measure has been initiated to fill the two lakes and no wonder the officials are praying to the rain gods. ‘‘We can bring some water to the two lakes but we have no idea of the lakes’ capacity. Obviously, the rain will bring some water,’’ said a senior irrigation department official.

On Tuesday, the government hinted at a long-term plan for permanent revival of the two water bodies. ‘‘The NCR Planning Board (NCRPB) officials said that they might approach consultants, who plan revival of parched lakes,’’ said chief secretary Urvashi Gulati.

She said Haryana government would like NCRPB to include the plan of reviving these two water bodies in its tourism plan for the NCR. ‘‘We talked of long-term solution. Blockage of rainwater catchments areas around these lakes and mining had resulted in drying up of the lakes. We are serious about the issue,’’ Gulati added. NCRPB member secretary Noor Mohammed also said that some international funding agencies also provide assistance for revival of water bodies.

Meanwhile, government officials also said that intra-city bus service in Gurgaon would commence soon on public private partnership mode and as many as 400 buses would ply in Gurgaon in the next two years and 600 in the next four years. Government also claimed that 250 CCTV cameras were being installed in Gurgaon and 140 in Faridabad to improve security in these cities.