NE monsoon: Chennai streets inundated after intense spell

Several interior streets and roads in North Chennai, including Tondiarpet, Thiruvottriyur, Vyasarpadi, Wall Tax road, and Perambur, have been inundated for the last 24 hours.
Water logging in a Chennai road due to heavy rains
Water logging in a Chennai road due to heavy rains

CHENNAI: Despite the civic body authorities working round the clock to ensure that there is no water logging in the city roads and streets due to the intense rainfall from Monday night, several interior areas experienced waterlogging on Tuesday, and people complained of no steps being taken by the concerned department.

Several interior streets and roads in North Chennai, including Tondiarpet, Thiruvottriyur, Vyasarpadi, Wall Tax road, and Perambur, have been inundated for the last 24 hours. These areas failed to get attention from government department officials, claimed residents.

"The civic body authorities have recently started the stormwater drains (SWD) works, and it remains incomplete. Due to the water stagnation on the main road, people met with accidents during the intense rainfall. The officials focus on ensuring there is no water stagnation in other parts of Chennai, and none of them inspected or steps are taken to drain the water here," said R Surya, a resident of Tondiarpet.

Unlike the promise by the government, the SWD has not helped in many areas of the city. The areas identified as core places which were impacted during last year's monsoon, such as Kolathur and T Nagar, experienced waterlogging on Tuesday.

The drains were not cleared before the onset of the Northeast monsoon. The residents struggled due to water logging.

"Due to the water stagnation knee-deep as the excess water entered into the locality after the recent rains. Four months ago, the local body authorities re-laid the road to the adjacent road to our street. When asked the assistant engineer, they denied it and stated that they got information that this road should not be re-laid," complained Sindhu (name changed), a resident of South Cooum river road, Pudupet.

The rainwater from the three roads will flow along this road to the stormwater drains. But, the drain is filled with debris and plastic waste which is not cleared for a long time.

"Though we raised complaints to the GCC control room, councillor, and zonal office, there has been no response or action taken till now. And if it continues for the next few hours, the situation will be worse in the locality," she added. Netizens also shared their experiences on social media and vented that the online complaints were serving no purpose.

"So far, 19 trees have fallen, of which 17 are removed. And workers are engaged in the process of removing the remaining trees in the city. A 24-hour control room with all service department officers is functioning at the Ripon building to take immediate action on public complaints regarding rain damage," said Municipal Administration and Water Supply Minister KN Nehru, addressing the media after inspection of the control room on Tuesday.

However, Corporation officials maintained that over 2,000 engineers are engaged in flood prevention work and about 19,500 persons are involved in sanitation and emphasised that the civic body was addressing the monsoon-related complaints on war footings. Velachery, Pullianthope, Madipakkam, and Ayanavaram had no major water logging as the Corporation authorities attending to the complaints since Monday night, the minister added.

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