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To address the issue of depleting water level of Sukhna Lake, the Chandigarh administration is considering three options for filling the man-made lake. UT adviser Parimal Rai on Friday held a meeting with officials of the Chandigarh administration to discuss the options of using treated tertiary water, digging tubewells in Sukhna catchment area and bringing water from Patiala ki Rao.
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Over the years, the water level of the lake has been declining owing to heavy silting. Deficient rainfall in the past six years has added to the problem. The Punjab and Haryana High Court had taken suo motu notice of the depletion of water level in Sukhna Lake in 2009 and since then, had been monitoring the case. On the directions of HC, the administration had sought suggestions from Tricity residents for saving the lake.
Sources said the authorities are primarily considering using treated tertiary water. A private firm has been hired to treat the tertiary water on a trial basis. The firm has installed its equipment at the Sector 28-based tertiary water distribution centre. The Chandigarh Pollution Control Committee (CPCC) has recently analysed the samples of treated tertiary and found suspended solids (TSS) and potassium hydrogen (PH) within permissible limits. A pipeline will be laid for supplying water to the lake, if water is found fit to be used to fill lake.
The Chandigarh Municipal Corporation treats around 30 million gallons of water per day (MGD) waste water, of which only around 7 MGD is being used by the city residents for irrigation and other purposes, while the remaining water goes down the drain. The civic body spends around Rs 1 crore every year to treat waste water.
The microbiology department of Panjab University has also carried out a research project with the UT department of environment. Dr Naveen Gupta, the pincipal investigator of the research project, has devised a technology to render the treated tertiary water safe from eutrophication so that it can be added to Sukhna Lake.
In a comparative study made, the treated tertiary water was found to be as good as Sukhna lake water itself with respect to chemicals, biological oxygen demand, chemical oxygen demand, density, total suspended materials and others.