Chandigarh, September 22
Continuous rain during the past 48 hours may have been exasperating for city residents but the heavy downpour has proved a blessing in disguise for the Sukhna Lake, whose water level had been receding before the onset of the monsoon.

Finally, after months of toil, the lake has crossed the nine-foot mark, two feet more than last year at this time. What is even more impressive is the fact that the water level has been achieved despite the additional capacity of 20 million gallons, which was attained after desilting the lake.

By now the UT engineering department, which had started desilting the completely dry patches of the lake towards the regulator end, has already removed over 10 million cubic feet of silt from the lake bed.

In fact this remarkable feat has been achieved over and above the target that the department officials had set for themselves. When they had embarked upon this uphill task of desilting the lake, they had set a very realistic goal in mind - removing 5 million cubic feet of silt. Little did the officials realise that with over 16 hours of hard labour and with hundreds of workers pressed on the job, complete with machinery and equipment, in a day’s work they were able to achieve more than double the mark.

Thanks to the continuous monitoring under the CCTV cameras, which were installed recently to supervise the ongoing work that began in early April, the de-weeded lake is now looking up with an increased area of 70 acres.

Officials claim that despite the lake’s water level the gates at the regulator end have not been opened yet. The last time these gates were opened was in 2008 when heavy rain lashed the region.

Source: Smriti Sharma Vasudeva Tribune News Service