Kolhapur: Restoration work on the walkways surrounding Rankala Lake in Kolhapur city has begin. The Lake which was neglected for years, is undergoing a significant revitalization project funded by Maharashtra government with over 20 crores.

Currently, the focus is on repairing the walking paths, with an expected completion date of March 2024. While the ongoing construction poses some inconvenience for morning walkers, they are bearing with it in anticipation of the lake’s revival.

Rankala Lake
Rakala Lake,kolhapur

However, some residents have emphasized the need for completing the work before May, as the summer months see a surge in visitors seeking morning walks at the lake. Concerns have been raised that the monsoon season could create disruptions on the lake’s banks if the project remains incomplete.

The overall project encompasses various aspects, including:

  • Desilting the lake for cleaner water
  • Installing electric lighting
  • Creating selfie points near the Sandhyamath area
  • Establishing parking spaces for two-wheelers and four-wheelers
  • Constructing five gateways with arches at various points
  • Installing CCTV cameras
  • Restoring the lake’s walls
  • Repairing ghats
  • Completing the unfinished walkways
  • Preserving and restoring the Tambat Arch
  • Completing the immersion well
  • Implementing landscaping and plantation
  • Building four public toilets and providing drinking water facilities

This comprehensive project aims to restore Rankala Lake to its former glory and transform it into a captivating tourist destination for the citizens of Kolhapur. Completing the work before the monsoon season is crucial to minimize disruption and ensure residents can enjoy the revitalized lake at its best.

The Significance of Rankala Lake for Kolhapur: History, Recreation, and Identity

Rankala Lake holds a special place in the heart of Kolhapur, serving as a historical landmark, recreational hub, and symbol of the city’s identity. Here’s a closer look at its importance:

Historical Significance:

  • Ancient Origins: Dating back to the 8th-9th century, Rankala was initially a stone quarry. An earthquake transformed the site into a lake, creating a unique historical legacy.
  • Spiritual Connection: The partially submerged Rankabhairav temple within the lake adds a religious dimension to its significance. Local legends add to its mystique, with stories about Lord Shiva and the lake’s potential connection to the apocalypse.

Recreational Value:

  • Popular Destination: Rankala is a beloved spot for locals and tourists alike. People flock to the lake for leisure walks, boating, and enjoying street food from nearby vendors.
  • Scenic Beauty: The picturesque surroundings, including the Shalini Palace and Padmaraje Garden, contribute to the lake’s charm, making it a perfect escape from the bustle of city life.

Symbol of Identity:

  • Cultural Significance: Rankala is often referred to as the “Marine Drive” of Kolhapur, highlighting its importance as a cultural landmark and a source of pride for the city’s residents.
  • Social Gathering Place: The lake serves as a communal space where people from all walks of life come together to socialize, relax, and celebrate festivals like Ganesh Chaturthi and Shiv Jayanti.

Rankala Lake wasn’t built in the traditional sense, as its formation is attributed to a natural event – an earthquake that occurred sometime between the 8th and 9th centuries.

While the lake itself wasn’t constructed, there have been significant efforts over time to manage, develop, and beautify Rankala. Here’s a brief overview of these contributions:

  • Early Developments: Historical records indicate that the Chhatrapati rulers of Kolhapur undertook various initiatives to maintain and enhance the lake. These included constructing embankments, ghats, and other structures.
  • Modernization Efforts: In the 20th and 21st centuries, the Kolhapur Municipal Corporation played a crucial role in further developing Rankala. This included projects like beautification initiatives, landscaping, and the construction of recreational facilities like boating piers and walkways.

Therefore, attributing the creation of Rankala in its current form to a single individual or entity wouldn’t be entirely accurate.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *