Five years on, no action on IISc report

Report had suggested that the storm water drains had to be cleared for flood waters to flow freely

Bengaluru: In 2009, researchers from the Indian Institute of Science had prepared an extensive flood map of the city and had suggested a number of short-term and long-term measures. The report was submitted to the state government, Ministry of Home Affairs and National Disaster Management Authority.

The report had suggested that the storm water drains had to be cleared for flood waters to flow freely.

Since then, the government has not moved an inch to restore the storm water drain network in the city because of which flooding has become a common phenomenon. The monsoon preparedness of city agencies was once again exposed last week when the city received over 100 mm rainfall in just 48 hours.

The researchers, who worked on the case study of Bengaluru flooding, are upset. They feel that the government agencies do not take the research papers seriously. “So far, only two engineers from the BBMP came to us discussing about the strategies for mitigating urban floods. After that nothing happened on the report, which also lists the reasons and practical solutions to bring down flooding. Removal of encroachments on storm water drains and not allowing fresh encroachments were the major recommendations made, but not followed by the government. The authorities still allowed change in land use and several storm water drains are today buried under apartment complexes,” said Dr T.V. Ramachandra from the Energy and Wetland Research Group, IISc.

He said that the lakes in the city were interlinked once, and the excess water flowed from one tank to another ensuring that the city was not flooded. “But unplanned urbanisation and encroachments on the waterways have drastically altered the drainage characteristics of natural catchments in Bengaluru. This has also increased the volume and rate of surface runoff. Drainage systems are unable to cope with the increased volume of water and are often encountered with the blockage due to indiscriminate disposal of solid waste.

Encroachment of wetlands and floodplains obstructs floodways causing loss of natural flood storage,” he said.

( Source : dc correspondent )
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