The distance between Manikonda and HiTec City is set to be trimmed as the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation is racing to finish a new stretch of 100-feet road connecting the residential area to the business district.

“The road will link the Old Bombay Highway with Manikonda as well as Chitrapuri Colony. The road will also be linked to the area near B.N. Reddy Colony. It is going to be completed in one year,” said a GHMC staffer handling construction debris at the location.

The road skirts the Malkam Cheruvu on its right side and will curve right towards Chitrapuri Colony. The straight path takes it towards Manikonda.

“Development on this stretch of road has been delayed as they gave time to people who had houses to move out,” said a resident who had a house on the shoreline of the lake. A three-storied building was being torn down to make way for the road. While the utility of the road can be easily gauged, the path it takes is debatable. “Parts of the road are easily inside the Full Tank Level of the lake marked by the GHMC-HMDA in 2013. Part of the lake front was lost to construction activity on the main road. This road will lead to further shrinkage of the carrying capacity of the lake,” said Lubna Sarwath of Save Our Urban Lakes after checking with the cadastral map of the site. FTL is the outer limit of a water body factoring in the annual flooding. Construction activity within FTL limits is prohibited.

Over the past few years, the shrinkage in the carrying capacity of lakes has had its impact on localised urban flooding in Hyderabad as the water flows over flat ground flooding apartment blocks and marooning residential colonies. A rocky area on the southern shore of the lake is being flattened to make way for the road that will curve towards Chitrapuri Colony. “The sluice gate and the weir have been impacted by the earthen work inside the lake. The road will further impact the outflow channel,” says Ms. Sarwath who has surveyed the area extensively. On its path towards Manikonda, the road hugs the sewage channel to its right. Not surprisingly, a major chunk of the work has been done during the lockdown period where a clear path has been laid under the high-tension electricity pylons.

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