Deep depression changes course to north, leaves wreckage behind

PWD sources attributed the delay to the state assembly elections and added that work would be resumed once model code of conduct is lifted.

Chennai: Wreckage. That’s what the cyclonic storm, which made landfall along the Chennai coast early Wednesday morning, left behind as it uprooted 99 trees in an already green cover starved city.

No casualties or damage to property was recorded in the uprooting incidents but roads have taken a beating in the rainfall, although corporation authorities maintained that city roads have “largely been unaffected.”

Officials of the Greater Chennai Corporation were on their toes throughout as water stagnation was reported in no less than 246 places in the city. At the time of writing, the civic authorities had only managed to clear excess rainfall from 190 spots despite pressing into service 112 pump sets and super suckers, suction and jet rodding machines borrowed from Chennai Metro Water Board.
Many interior streets across the city had stagnant rain water with residents complaining that their efforts to get through to corporation authorities fell on deaf ears.

Residents of T Nagar complained that their petitions to 1913 requesting help in clearing stagnant rain water was not attended to by local body officials.
With 12.7 cm rainfall received in the city since morning on May 17, the city’s roads bore resemblance of a cesspool. RK Mutt Road, MG Road, Elliot’s Promenade, GST Road, Arcot Road, Usman Road were just a few of the main roads which had significant stagnant water. Chennaiites were not too impressed with the efficiency of the local body’s storm water drainage network as stagnant water troubled motorists.

“I have given up hope that Chennai will ever have a proper rain water drainage system. It is the same situation as last year and in the years before that. Since it is not monsoon season, there is some hope that we won’t suffer for long but I don’t think that the authorities are concerned (about rectifying the issue),” said Ramesh Babu, a resident of Sowcarpet.

Though authorities were at pains to allay fears about the damages that a mid-summer cyclone can cause, many residents feared a repeat of the December 2015 situation, especially after the corporation brought in two boats in the Kotturpuram area. In neighbouring Tambaram, Mudichur and surrounding suburb localities, local authorities were pacifying residents unsettled by flooded roads in their area. For instance, the Tambaram-Mudichur-Padappai road has been holding nearly two feet water for the last three days. “Encroachments were the reason behind the flooding in Tambaram area during December. The Kancheepuram revenue officials and PWD authorities had cleared the encroachments but the work was left incomplete. We request them to complete removal of all encroachments soon,” said M. Selvamani, panchayat president of Varadarajapuram area, which was one of the worst affected localities.

PWD sources attributed the delay to the state assembly elections and added that work would be resumed once model code of conduct is lifted. Lake levels too rose with the rainfall helping to recharge ground water levels as well. With inflow increasing, the PWD released 160 cusecs of water from the Chembarambakkam reservoir late on Wednesday. From the Poondi reservoir 39 cusecs and from the Red Hills lake 174 cusecs were being released. PWD assured that as the quantity of discharge was low, there will not be a flooding situation.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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