Grazing on the lake – the water of life

As the name suggests, Lakeside is situated on the banks of a lake. My header picture shows the lake when it is full.

Built in early 1950’6 as a drinking water reservoir for the nearby town of Dindigul. Kamarajar lake is named after a very famous Indian politician who was Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu and who, amongst other things, improved education and instituted free school meals in the State. 

This man-made lake covers an area of 400 acres and is filled by the north-east monsoons at the end of each year.  As the water is pumped out the level falls to reveal grazing land for local goats, water buffalo etc  The south west monsoon of July and August, which falls mainly on the mountains to our west, feeds some water into the lake and the level rises a little before continuing to fall over the next few months.

There are a number of lakes feeding Dindigul but there is never enough water.  Most people get their water from stand-pipes in the street every day or two.  As the water levels fall this can become as infrequent as once a week.

A massive project is underway to try to clear some of these tanks (artificial reservoirs).  Work has just started on de-silting part of our lake.  All day long diggers are loading up the tractors which queue to have their trailers filled with the rich earth which they then spread on the coconut plantations in the area (should be a good crop this year!).

Hopefully this will enable more water to be stored when the rains come and relieve some of the thirst in dusty Dindigul.

 

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