Delhiites will once again be able to enjoy boat rides at one of the biggest lakes of the city, Naini Lake, in Model Town 1, soon. The Delhi Tourism and Transportation Development Corporation (DTTDC) will set up a soft adventure park here, which will include boating as one of the activities on the 6.5-acre lake, and maintain a popular restaurant in its vicinity.
A proposal to this effect was passed at the standing committee meeting of the North Delhi Municipal Corporation, which owns the lake, on Friday.
The lake is located in the middle of dense neighbourhoods in north Delhi, but has an island with fountains in the middle and a few ducks, making it a picnic spot.
"We have made an agreement with the DTTDC, whereby they will get the boats and do the ticketing. They will share 12.5% of the profits annually with us and also arrange for lifeguards and jackets. They will also desilt the water body as and when needed," a senior official of the corporation said.
The civic body has already engaged NEERI (National Environmental Engineering Research Institute) to clean the pond water. It installed floating planters—certain shrubs and plants that use sewage as nutrition—on the lake recently.
"The DTTDC used to conduct boat rides at Naini Lake earlier as well, but stopped it in 2015 for some reason. Reviving it will help us in many ways. First of all, boats will help in natural churning of the water and oxygenating it, thereby cleaning it naturally," Ashish Priyadarshi, director of the north body's horticulture department, said.
"Second, it will get us revenue, and third, the dead lake will become a public recreation point again," Priyadarshi said.
VK Tandon, the court commissioner (water bodies) appointed by the Delhi High Court, had inspected the lake recently with the north corporation, the DTTDC, and the Delhi Jal Board officials, and recommended restarting boating here.