Back to previous page
    Click on areas

Background   Links   Chronology   People
The Bhoj Wetland consisting of two lakes (Upper & Lower lakes) are manmade reservoirs. The Upper Lake (Badee talab) was created in 11th century and has a partial urban component in its catchment (361 sq km in area) on the eastern end while the remainder is rural. The Lower lake, locally known as Chhota Talab, was created in 18th century and is situated towards the east end of Upper lake and is fully surrounded by built-up areas. Compared to the Upper Lake it has a small catchment area of 9.60 sq km. The wetland supports a wide variety of flora and fauna and is rich in bio-diversity. A total of more than 20,000 birds have been observed annually. Bhoj Wetland was recognized as a wetland of international importance under the Ramsar Convention of 1971 in 2002. The Upper Lake acts as the lifeline of the city supplying 40 % of the total potable water.

Both the lakes have shrunk appreciably. The Upper Lake has reduced from initial 30 sq.kms to 8 sq.kms as of now. The Lower Lake also got reduced from 8 sq km in the beginning to 2 sq kms in 2009. The total length of the lake was 38 kms, but it reduced to 5kms in 2009.Various threats on lakes include, siltation due to soil erosion of the catchment area and inflow of untreated sewage and wastewater from the surrounding human settlements. The lakes are also used daily by more than 2,000 people daily to bathe, wash clothes and clean their vehicles; the immersion of idols and tazias are common in these water bodies. There is encroachment in catchment areas of these two wetlands for slum development, agricultural activities and tourism. The use of motorboats by the tourism department has also increased the pollution level of the lake water. Since the Lower Lake is located within an urban area hence it is subjected to many negative anthropogenic stresses, its water quality degradation has been much more than the upper lake.

In 1995, government initiated a Rs.2.5 billion project for conservation of the wetland, with money borrowed from the Japanese Bank of International Cooperation (JBIC). Under this Bhopal Lake Conservation and Management Project, regular water quality monitoring of both the lakes were done. For this purpose 18 stations in Upper Lake and 14 stations in Lower Lake have been fixed. Physico - chemical and biological parameters were regularly analyzed. Instead of its pre-determined tenure of 5 years, the project went for 9 years. The government negotiated another loan of Rs 240 million out of the leftover funds for a 5-year project in 2004. In 2005, LCA sought help from corporate captains to save Bhoj Wetland, from degradation and pollution. A master plan was launched to keep the 1,000 year old water body free from city garbage.

Public interest litigation was filed by the local citizens’ forum, an informal pressure group of prominent citizens in 2007 with the State Human Rights Commission (MPHRC), which brought all the issues relating to conservation of the wetland to the notice of the government. The Bhopal based NGO-Prayatna raised the issue of mismanagement of biomedical waste by the Hamidia Hospital during the MP Human Rights Commission's foundation day. MPHRC asked the Madhya Pradesh Pollution Control Board (PCB) to probe the allegations. The PCB clearly indicated that the hospital was surely mismanaging its waste.

At the end of 2008, the situation in the Upper Lake deteriorated due to poor quality of water as wells as reduction of storage capacity. The problem was compounded with less rainfall, resulting in decrease in the supply of water. In November, a joint drive was initiated by the district administration, district police and Bhopal Municipal Corporation, in which around 750 acres of Upper Lake land was vacated from encroachments.

The process of registering FIR was also initiated to stop encroachments.  It was found that during winters, Epizootic Ulcerative Syndrome (EUS), a disorder among fishes, was observed in the lakes, leading to losses to fishery industry. In 2009, Citizens performed voluntary labour for Upper Lake conservation campaign, started under the joint aegis of district administration and Municipal Corporation. Under the campaign 315 trips of weeds and mud were taken out from Upper Lake and dumped at the suitable place. Recent Update: The Lake is drying up.

  Down to earth

Bhopal's Upper Lake threatened by tourism

Research paper:

  July 2009: Urban Administration and Development Minister Babulal Gaur along with Bhopal Municipal Corporation (BMC) commissioner and officers associated with development of State capital did perusal of the Lower Lake. He gave instructions to to stop flow of nullhas and small drains into Lower Lake and to develop the bank of lower lake in systematic manner.


Bhoj Wetland Project 
Environmental Planning & Coordination Organisation 
Gurunanak Bhawan, Z-9, Zone-1,
Phone: 270377, 270378, 270379, 554837. 
Fax: 0755-553467 
E-Mail :

L-2, BDA Flats, C-Sector
Bhopal 462038
Madhya Pradesh
Ph: 91-755-2428187, 2460657


Verma Neelam
Department of Chemistry,
Govt. Geetanjali Girls P.G. College,
Barkatullah University,
Bhopal, India.
Now buy viagra online from different online pharmacies and sort out all sexual performance related issues. You can get comprehensive and up to date source of drug information online. Not only Viagra, but you can buy cialis online also at some discounted price. From the site casino online also you can buy these.