Activists welcome MLA G.T. Devegowda’s stand to resurvey historic canal
Mysuru: Mysore Grahakara Parishat (MGP) has urged the elected representatives and residents to save the iconic Kukkarahalli Lake and clear encroachment on Dewan Poornaiah Canal.
MGP members, under the banner of Kukkarahalli Ulisi Andolan, has welcomed Chamundeshwari MLA G.T. Devegowda’s (GTD) announcement of redoing the survey of Dewan Poornaiah Canal in an effort to preserve the Kukkarahalli Lake’s life line. “We congratulate him (GTD) for his firm and timely stand on the issue,” they said in a press release.
It may be recalled here that at the Karnataka Development Programme (KDP) meeting held on Oct. 21, GTD had hauled up Mysuru Urban Development Authority (MUDA) officials for closure of Dewan Poornaiah Canal near Bogadi.
The MLA was shocked as one of the MUDA officials said that the Canal was being closed following MUDA Commissioner’s orders. GTD then directed MUDA to conduct a fresh survey and re-acquire MUDA lands that have been encroached.
S. Shobana, Shylajesha, D.H. Tanuja and Bhamy Shenoy, all of them associated with the Andolan, said, “We were shocked to learn that an order had been issued for the construction of the road on what is remaining of the Canal. We hope that there must be some misunderstanding on this citizen un-friendly step. No responsible official in modern days when there is greater awareness to preserve the environment will take such a step,” they said.
The concerned members stated that they are studying the Canal from time to time to find out how to increase the inflow into Kukkarahalli Lake. “When Kukkarahalli Lake was in the pink of its health, Dewan Poornaiah Canal was in good shape. Unfortunately over the years, due to official neglect, greed of the real estate mafia and indifference of people, the Canal has been encroached upon in several places,” they observed.
Recalling their meeting with Deputy Commissioners over the years, they have urged to restore Poornaiah Canal and strongly felt that even now with some effort, encroachments can be removed in some places and where it can’t be removed, alternative routes can be provided for flow of water.
They demanded that elected representatives immediately ask MCC Commissioner to stop any activity involving encroachment of Poornaiah Canal. Of the original length of 22-km, only 4-km remains today, they maintained. Finding alternatives will not be easy and also technically challenging. It can be done but will cost money that is worth spending to save the Lake,” they argued.
“What is needed is political will. If the people demand that elected leaders act, they will be forced to undertake the restoration. If we continue to show indifference and do nothing, we will lose Kukkarahalli Lake within few years,” they cautioned.
The activists urged the people of Mysuru to come forward to get involved with the movement and sought support for GTD for his effort. They demanded that the MCC Commissioner stop any activity involving encroachment of the historic Canal.