‘varthurlake.com’, a citizen-led initiative to safeguard and rejuvenate Varthur lake

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www.varthurlake.com is a citizen led initiative to safe guard and rejuvenate the Varthur lake. Seen here is a screenshot of the website.
www.varthurlake.com is a citizen-led initiative to safeguard and rejuvenate the Varthur lake. Seen here is a screenshot of the website.

Varthur lake is the second-largest water body in Bengaluru. The 440-acre lake is located on the eastern periphery of the city, surrounded by villages and all the big IT companies. Over the last 20 years, a lot has changed and the lake has become infamous as one of the most polluted lakes in the city. From a pristine water body where people used to fish and bathe, it has now turned into a cesspool that froths and foams. It even catches fire!

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Concerned by the encroachment and degradation of the lake, residents came around to start a rejuvenation campaign. The history of the lake campaign can be read here: Turning Burning Lakes Around.

In the last 5 years, much has been done by a team working relentlessly to push forward the safeguarding of the lake.

One of the key challenges faced by the team has been data collection. Data is an easy way is to understand and collate issues and problems, as articulated by Prof TV Ramachandra of the Indian Institute of Science who has been at the forefront to save the lake.

More specifically, the website will resolve issues in two ways:

  1. An easy way for citizens and residents living around the lake to share information with respect to encroachment, burning of garbage, sewage entry among others
  2. A central repository to collate data and information

Keeping this in mind, a special website has been launched to serve as a call to action, a place to register complaints and follow news about the lake. The website serves as a platform to gather real-time information, provide information on plans and rejuvenation related updates.

Here’s the website, visit now: www.varthurlake.com

All are encouraged to visit the website and share the issues that need to be addressed.

How to report issues?

It’s simple! The issues can be reported in five categories as mentioned below:

  1. Encroachment
  2. Sewage entry
  3. Garbage dumping/burning
  4. Toxic water/fish death
  5. Agricultural issues

To report any of the above issues, visit the website and click on the ‘issues’ section on the top. Select the issue and fill in the details in the google form that will pop up. The easy to use google forms allow citizens to share information about the issue along with pictures and maps of the location. Information can be shared in real-time to highlight to the authorities.

There is also an option to share information anonymously, in case of concerns. For any other queries, you can drop an email to hello@whitefieldrising.org.

About the website

This page is a student-built project for Whitefield Rising. It is advised and supported by volunteers working for Varthur lake. The information gathered through the survey will be used by the Varthur Lake team of Whitefield Rising and Prof TV Ramachandra of Indian Institute of Science to inform and guide the rejuvenation work. All information will be used for rejuvenation related work only. The data will not be shared outside of that or for any marketing related purposes.

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