Downtown

This pond's a beauty

Collective efforts: The recent showers have filled the pond to the brim. The Association has also bought a few ducks to beautify the water body. Photos: M. Vedha

Collective efforts: The recent showers have filled the pond to the brim. The Association has also bought a few ducks to beautify the water body. Photos: M. Vedha   | Photo Credit: M_VEDHAN

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Residents of Baskar Colony turn an unused land into an eye-catching water body, complete with lilies, fish and ducks. K. Sarumathi reports.

A pond that never dries is full of lilies and is home to a variety of fish and a few ducks. Nothing can be more rejuvenating than taking a stroll around such a water body every morning. The residents of Baskar Colony in Saligramam get to do exactly that. Right in the middle of the colony, which comprises six streets, is a park-cum-manmade pond which came into existence due to inimitable effort taken by residents of the area. Today, thanks to this pond, the residents have almost forgotten what it means to face water scarcity. The creation of the pond has meant that rainwater is put to good use and not allowed to stagnate on the roads. The recent showers have filled the pond to its brim, besides raising the water table. Residents say all the wells in the neighbourhood are full. “For the past few years we have not had any water problem in the area. The pond has been a source of water for 300 families living in the six streets here,” says Murali, secretary, Baskar Nagar Residents’ Welfare Association.

Where the park and the pond today stand, was an empty plot commonly owned by the residents of the colony. The place was overgrown with bushes and was posing a threat to those living nearby. Also, being in a low-lying area, rainwater would collect and become a breeding ground for mosquitoes. There was also a dilapidated metro water overhead tank that threatened to crumble any day. The members of the association decided to put the land to good use and approached the Corporation to get a park and a pond constructed on it.

When the pond was constructed, storm water drains on Baskar Colony Second and Third Street, Vivekananda Street and Dasaratham Street were connected to the pond. The rainwater would be directed into the 20-feet deep pond. The central portion is a further eight-feet deep and cemented to ensure the pond is never completely dry.

“The ducts are cleaned once a year by the conservancy agency. For the upkeep of the pond, we residents also take certain measures such as getting weed and grass removed, sometimes with the help of the Tree Bank Enviro Team. Bamboo tree and saplings have been gifted by the latter to the park. Also willing residents donate money very month for its maintenance,” says C.R. Nair, the past president of the association.

However, First Street and Bharatidasan Street do not have stormwater drains and, therefore, they still face problem of stagnation.

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Printable version | Jan 26, 2020 11:59:47 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/downtown/residents-of-baskar-colony-turn-an-unused-land-into-an-eyecatching-water-body/article6577648.ece

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