With the temperatures soaring, swimming pools have become a tempting option to beat the heat. However, not all can afford the luxury of diving into pools at expensive resorts or clubs.
But, two out of the nine pools owned by Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) have remained closed for years, dashing the hopes of hundreds of residents, who wished to drown their summer blues at the pools owned by the civic body by paying a nominal fee.
The BBMP has swimming pools in Basavanagudi, Jayanagar, J.P Nagar, Kempe Gowda Nagar, Mahalakshmi Layout, Sadashivanagar, Seshadripuram, Ulsoor and Vijayanagar. But the pools at Seshadripuram and Ulsoor have remained closed for over eight and five years respectively. Adults are charged a nominal Rs.16 per hour, while Rs. 8 is charged for children.
“The Seshadripuram pool was closed down due to lease issues which have not been solved till date,” said Murthy. M, a resident, who also complained that nothing has been done to renovate the pool either.
Seshadripuram College is also located close to the pool and the students miss the opportunity of going for a swim after college hours. Prakash M.S, a student said, “It would be great if the BBMP opened and renovated the pool”.
Meanwhile, residents of Ulsoor and surrounding areas like Cox Town and Frazer Town, especially the children, are also feeling the loss of having no pool in their locality. Fourteen-year-old G. Karthik said,
“Most private pools are costly. We cannot afford memberships in clubs or join other swimming camps as they are expensive. We want our Kensington pool to be reopened as the fee they collect is very nominal.”
When asked about the current status of the pools, BBMP Engineer-in-Chief, Ramesh B.T had some good news for the residents. “We are aware of this matter and the pools will be renovated soon and brought back to good shape,” he said. It is unlikely that pools will be thrown open to the public this summer.