Buried under slum sprawl for years, Thane lake to spring back to life

March 02, 2020

THANE: Over two years after the initiative was launched, the Thane Municipal Corporation’s efforts to revive the ‘dead’ Jogila Lake seem to have borne fruit and the water body is set to spring back to life this monsoon.

The discovery of underground springs at the site has sparked hope that the lake, which had disappeared a few decades ago, will return to its former glory.

“We are confident the lake will fill up this monsoon. Our team has found natural springs underneath the lakebed and the quality of groundwater seems to be good. However, the project to revitalize the lake and revamp its precincts will take a few more years,” said Thane municipal commissioner Sanjeev Jaiswal, who visited the spot recently. In 2017, the administration flagged off the ambitious project to revive the lake, spread over 0.24 acres in Uthalsar ward of Thane, with an initial allocation of Rs 2.25 crore. The biggest challenge was rehabilitation and relocation of an illegal slum sprawl comprising 300 families who had encroached upon the lake bed.

What made it even more daunting was an initiative of this magnitude had never been executed before, not just in the city, but even across the state, said a senior civic official.

“Once the hutments were cleared, we started clearing heaps of debris dumped into the lakebed. After excavating nearly 20 feet, we came across a few natural springs. We sought help from National Environmental Engineering Research Institute (NEERI) experts,” said a PWD official.

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Source : timesofindia.indiatimes.com