Spent Rs 500 cr on drain works to tackle flooding, claims BMC

A total of 273 flood-prone spots are identified; civic body claims it has addressed issues in 75% of the areas

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The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation has spent more than Rs 500 crores to improve the drainage system by laying new drainage line, augmenting older lines, desilting nullahs and cleaning gutters to keep land in sight in 273 areas prone to flooding this season

As Mumbai city awaits monsoon, the civic body claims that it has spent Rs 500 crores to improve the drainage system of the city. This will be the test for the civic body as they are in a better position to tackle the waterlogging issues in the city. A total of Rs 500 crore spent were utilised for laying the new drainage line, augmenting the older lines, desilting of nullahs and cleaning of gutters.

Apart from the previous 225 chronic flood-prone spots identified in 2017, the civic body has added 48 new spots, taking the total tally of flood-prone areas to 273.

Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) claims they have inspected 75% of flood-prone locations and have done the repair works.

Even though the municipal corporation has spent nearly Rs 500 crore the official of various wards didn't seem confident to the proposition of city being flood-free.

A civic body official said that they cannot say that there will be no flooding incidents in the island city as there are several factors at play which lead to flooding. The reasons that cause a spot to flood are high tide, technical glitches at pumping station or a very heavy rainfall, which are beyond their control.

"Looking at the topography of the city some areas witnesses flooding as the city is saucer shaped. So, the central locations of the saucer will accumulate water and witness flooding. So for us to say that Mumbai will be flood-free is not possible, all we can say the works carried out in flood-prone areas has helped us tackle these spots," explained a BMC official on condition of anonymity.

The recently held Lok Sabha elections left them with very little time to carry out development work. The BMC says of the 48 new flood-prone spots identified last year, it has managed to tackle 32 spots. Most of the spots were in south Mumbai, which is witnessing other transport projects being carried out. The civic body has spent Rs 50 crore to tackled these spots either by laying new drainage line or augmentation of older lines.

Meanwhile, an activist Nikhil Desai points out that the civic body is just wasting money and the claims of work being done are tall promises.

"The municipal corporation's claim of crores of money spent on development is false. For last five years they have just added one more line, which helps water recede faster," said Desai.

Apart from the usual chronic flood-prone areas like Dadar TT, Hindamata, Malad Subway and Andheri Subway, last year south Mumbai was flooded too. A total of 36 news spots were identified in south Mumbai, which also could be because of the other road works being carried out in those localities. After south Mumbai, seven new flood-prone areas were seen in eastern suburbs, and five in western suburbs.


Byculla and Hindmata

Though Good news for Hindamata and Byculla is that recently completed micro-tunneling works will ensure that water doesn't hold on in these areas. Works to reconstruct 2,500 metres of storm water drain (SWD) lines were taken up by the BMC around Hindmata "As everyone knows, Hindmata is low lying area and water from the surrounding areas gets accumulated here. We are working on improving the drainage lines, which should make the area less problematic," said a BMC official.

Andheri-Kurla Road under Metro line 1

This spot or the road is never known for the flood before few years. But BMC started to get calls from the citizens around the completion of the Metro line 1. The areas at J B Nagar and Marol started to go under water. The flood water raises up to the chest level. There was a drainage system, but it got damaged in the construction work and the new line didn't help in drain out the water. Even the status of the road was really bad. Two departments of BMC worked on it. SWD department with the help from road department of BMC replaced drainage line from the Andheri East station area up to Marol which is more than 1000 metres. The road has been widened to 90 feet from the originally 60 feet. The 1.5-meter wide box drain laid. The drain and culvert size varies according to the flow of the water. The work is going on from the last three years and 90 % of work has been completed.


Gandhi Market to Kings Circle

The area is saucer-shaped and the existing drainage line has to be replaced with the bigger one or an additional pipeline. But an additional drain can not be laid due to the large water mains in the area. "The pumping station at Mahul will solve the issue. But the land is with the central government and even after 12 years BMC is not ready with the permission," said Nikhil Desai from Matunga. He questioned, " If the whole metro work can go underground why we can't put drainage line underground via micro-tunnelling, BMC is just making fruitless arguments."

Juhu to Four Bungalows

The posh areas of JVPD, Four Bungalows, Nehru Nagar, Andheri subway areas will continue to flood this year too. The rainwater from these areas flows into Irla nullah, the BMC had planned to widen part of Irla Nullah between Milan Subway to Chandan Culvert which is 540 metres in length. The existing six-metre wide nullah was to widened to 11 metres. But due to the encroachment the Rs 12.25 crore project has been stalled, which will cause waterlogging issue in the locality. There were 216 hutments on the banks of the nullah. K west ward office demolished five structures and part of 25 structure 10 days ago under the Disaster Management Act, 2005. "We are working to rehabilitate project affected people but it can be done only after the monsoon," said Prashant Gaikwad, ward officer of K eastward.

Pratiksha Nagar and Sion

Pratiksha Nagar especially near BEST Depot Samaj Mandir Hall, Heman Manjrekar Marg gets flooded during the light-rain days. The civic body is working widen the 450 mm drain into 600 mm. The 2020 metres of the line is already laid which is jus 57% of total work. The other work is in progress. There is a second part of the project which is stalled due to encroachments. The civic body wants to widen and deepening of Pratiksha Nagar peripheral nullah.


Dadar TT, King’s Circle-Gandhi Market,  Jai Bharat Society - Bandra W, Andheri Subway, Nair Hospital - Gate  no.4, Byculla love lane, Parts of Hindmata, SV Road-Bandra West, Cadbury  junction-Pedder road, Agripada, Samaj Mandir Hall- Pratiksha Nagar,  Reynold’s Colony, Vashi Naka-Chembur, Shastri Nagar-Vidyavihar East,  Royal Park-Kanjurmarg, Mulund station W, Irla Masjid, Irla Junction,  Four Bungalows, Nehru Nagar, Veera Desai Road, Marve Queen building,  Dahisar-Sainath and Sanjay Nagar


Vijay Nagar - Antop Hill, Sion Koliwada,  Elphinston Junction, parts of Kurla — Bail Bazar, Kurla Junction, Kurla  Garden, Vashi Naka - Chembur, RCF compound, Garodia Nagar-Ghatkopar,  Shrirampada and GKW basin in Bhandup


Dr  Homi Bhabha Road, Tata roads, Nagdevi Street, Walkeshwar road, Hinduja  collage lane, Tankpakhadi road, Acharya Donde road, Shivaji Chowk,  Shri Chinai College- Andheri, CG Road Andheri E, MCF Garden-Borivali W, Sion-Trombay road, old subway Mulund


Nehru road to Air India gate no. 8.- Santacruz (E), Anjirwadi, Keshavrao Kaam Marg, VN Purav Marg and Suman Nagar- Chembur, Shell Colony, Mulund west station road, National College Bandra


The situation in our area is no different than what it was years ago. Water is still as dirty and floating waste is as high. Retaining walls have been constructed along the sides of slums. On the other hand, it has concretised the riverbed which will not allow water to penetrate the soil and recharge ground water 
Sagar Vira, Kandivali

I can't spot much improvement in Malad west. A few showers flooded the main road leading to the station last week. A few roads have been rebuilt; thus, we have better roads but the same old water drainage. Adding to woes are dislodged paver blocks that form deep craters, making the stretch prone to accidents 
Jitendra Arora, Malad

At present, drainage system is South Mumbai is well-maintained. Now, we do not face difficulties during monsoons like before. However, the challenge lies in the suburbs. The issue of waterlogging is yet to be fixed. People living in central line are the worst hit during monsoons. 
Aavesh Shaikh, Mumbai Central

During pre-monsoon showers, we have not come across any waterlogging unlike previous when rains would bring our lives to a halt. This is in stark contrast to the situation near chawls or slum areas which speaks volumes of BMC negligence. Open pits, when filled with water, pose huge risk to citizens 
Viral Mistry, Dahisar

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