Will focused on cleaning water bodies: Javadekar

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Prakash JavadekarUnion Minister of Environment, Forests and Climate Change Prakash Javadekar said that Central and State agencies have now started taking action on the city’s two frothing lakes and the Centre is actively focused on cleaning water bodies.

Referring to the Bellandur and Varthur lakes that have frequently frothed and foamed with toxic waste, the Minister said that they were getting about 600 million litres of untreated sewage a day, a common situation of water bodies across the country.

The Centre was serious about cleaning water bodies with the help of State governments and stakeholders. Vigilant citizens and State officials had a role in spotting them, he said. Mr. Javadekar was speaking at a news conference after a mid-year review of the lakes along with officials of the State and Centre. His ministry, he said, had sought a report on the matter in May.

Earlier, he watched presentations of the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike, Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board and minor irrigation and interacted with NGOs and civic groups on the matter. He said the next review would be in March next year. On encroachment of forest lands, the Minister said, “We have asked the States for reports and we will jointly work out a strategy.”

The government had published a draft of the notification on sustainable sand extraction and was concerned about the sand mafia attacking officers, he added.