Royal pond eyes lost glory

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By OUR CORRESPONDENT
  • Published 18.10.14
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Dhanbad Municipal Corporation has removed over 400 tonnes of hyacinth, moss and Durga idol remains from the historic Raja Talab of Jharia, paving the way for a dewatering and desilting project to reinstate the royal glory of the century-old lake.

Civic workers on Friday completed the massive clean-up mission that was launched under mounting pressure from local residents on October 8.

Now, state urban development minister Suresh Paswan, during his visit to Dhanbad on Saturday, is expected to signal the start of dewatering and desilting work in the lake at an estimated cost of Rs 58 lakh.

After the desilting work, which is likely to begin on November 1, the civic authorities will undertake a beautification project in February-March next year.

The department has already sanctioned Rs 3 crore for renovation and beautification of the banks and ghats of the lake. The project envisages erecting streetlights, constructing PCC roads, building concrete ghats and staircases and fencing the lake spread over 8.46 acres.

Also, there are plans to set up a water treatment plant and a biogas plant to keep the water fit for human use and treat wastes dumped near the lake from a nearby vegetable market.

A Ranchi-based consultancy firm, Messers Tandon Enterprises, will prepare a detailed project report for the beautification drive after conducting a survey of the lake and its surroundings.

Also, local residents have demanded that a statue of former King of Jharia Estate, Raja Shiva Prasad Singh who developed and beautified the lake during his regime (1916-1947), be installed on a small island situated in the middle of the water body.

Madavai Singh, the granddaughter-in-law of Raja Shiva Prasad Singh, has also met Dhanbad deputy commissioner Prashant Kumar to press for the demand.

Speaking to The Telegraph, the royal bahu said: “We will again meet him (DC) for including a statue of Raja Shiva Prasad Singh in the proposal for the beautification project.”

DMC executive engineer Indresh Shukla said the desilting would start only after the Chhath festival, for which the civic body would mix alum and bleaching powder in the water a day after Diwali.