Chennai: A collective sense of gloom descended over Chennai as the inclement weather persisted for more than three weeks, impeding the resumption of normal life even in the new week, with many interior parts remaining under water and many localities cut off from mainstream life even as the specter of more rains hung over the city.
Among those places where flood water remained on the roads and streets making life miserable for the people were Gopalapuram, where sandbags were piled up to prevent water from entering the house of former Chief Minister M Karunanidhi, and the Sardar Vallabhai Patel Road, where the Raj Bhavan is located.
The inundation of the Raj Bhavan premises impelled the authorities to break open the compound wall to let the water gush out, causing inconvenience to motorists using the arterial road. Even on Chitarajan Road, where Chief Minister M K Stalin resides, giant pumps were used non-stop to drain out the water that was collecting there without a break.
In some upscale localities quite close to the Chief Minister’s house, the inundation of the roads had led to many people being ferried out in boats belonging to fishermen. Several families complained that nothing had been done to drain out the water in those streets, forcing them to stay in hotel rooms in other parts of the city during the last 10 days.
Traffic diversions continued in many arterial roads in places like T Nagar, Valasaravakkam, K K Nagar and so on and in other flooded localities even the mini buses and auto rickshaws found it difficult to ply.
Two-wheeler riders ventured into the water-filled roads with their heart in the mouth as no one could predict where a pot hole on a ditch had developed due to the continuous stagnation. Poles and tree branches were placed inside the stretch of water by Good Samaritans to flag the motorists of impending danger.
State Minister for Disaster Management K K S S R Ramachandran said that water had been cleared from only 156 of the 524 localities that reported flooding. In Chennai 13 camps had been set up to provide relief to 1503 persons and 3218 food packets were distributed on Monday.
Meanwhile, the meteorological department forecasting heavy showers in various parts of the State in the next three days with Chennai, too, getting intermittent rains added to the anxiety of the people who were unable to resume normal life, some of them for up to three weeks.
Also the weather department’s warning of two more low pressure areas likely to be formed in the South Andaman sea and in the Arabian sea with a possibility of them moving towards Tamil Nadu after the dark skies, under present spell of inclement weather, cleared up gave raise to fears of the city not getting a respite for some more time.