‘Protecting the urban lakes of Hyderabad’ project endeavours to undertake a comprehensive action research by bringing in key issues and dynamics associated with quantity, quality and lake ecology at the forefront of research, action and policy agenda.
The project aims to generate a repository of knowledge on status, restoration and rejuvenation of the vanishing water bodies of Hyderabad by
The project has tried to consolidate the scattered data of the tanks/lakes for the year 2012/13 within the territorial limits of Municipal Corporation of Hyderabad, depicting their status. The idea is to bring forth the information of the status of lakes to the public domain. Out of 26 lakes official, only 19 could be actually located from the field. For the purpose of mapping the lakes have been classified into the following four categories
Two lakes were identified for the study-one in the urban and the other in peri urban area, based on various levels of discussion with the activists supporting lake revival and eextensive literature review of documents, reports, GOIs, RTIs.. The two lake prioritised are a) Hameed Khan Kunta (HkK) also known as Taj Banjara and ( b) Raviryala Cheruvu.
Mapping the lakes facilitated in developing an ecologically integrated plan for both the lakes. In case of Raviryla Cheruvu, the watershed of the lake along with their drainage channels were mapped for a thorough understanding of the points of violation on the feeder channels into the lake while in case of HHK the encroachments were identified which were impairing the natural flow of rain water into the lake. The key interventions were strategized basing the land use land cover maps for both the lakes.
With all the adequate data in place sustainable interventions have been decided. The HHK being highly polluted requires structural interventions like dredging and desilting while Raviryla required removal of the silt from the dried lake bed. Intervention in the water shed like unclogging the feeder channels for Raviryala and changing the gradient of the watershed in case of HHK has been suggested. However, a detailed study on engineering aspects of both the lakes required before furthering any interventions. The interventions suggested for the lakes are self-sustainable and proposes natural ways to restore the lakes and is not energy dependent.
Consultation meetings with the key stakeholders for both the lakes were conducted. The objective of the meeting was to bring diverse actors into one platform and mobilise community participation for the lake revival. Brief presentations on the status of the lakes and the strategies for reviving the lake were showcased in these meeting which was followed by discussions on key interventions for reviving the lakes and mobilising community support. A high level meeting with Minister MAUD and with the Tourism minister was conducted wherein the proposed technology for HHK was showcased.
Effective communication and outreach is the backbone for any publicity campaigns and social marketing. As a key activity of the project the communication and outreach component of the project involved reaching out to the masses and stakeholders through various mediums. Creative communication packages like brochures (specific to both the lakes), flyers have been developed under this activity in view of launching the “Adopt a Lake “campaign.
Street plays are the best medium to reach out to the people, because people identify themselves with the characters and the messages resonates among the target audiences. Street Plays were organised by the Nishumbita , theatre and ballet group, to create awareness on restoring and reviving the lakes. In total six plays have been organised three plays each for communities in and around Hameed Khan Kunta lake and Raviryala Cheruvu.