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Reporter's diary: Real heroes who brought the city back on its feet

While hundreds of trees were uprooted on Friday night and Saturday morning, within hours, the debris and fallen trees were removed by the Corporation staffers.

CHENNAI: Chennai could probably be the only Metro in the country to face back-to-back natural calamities in the past decade. Whether it was the incessant rainfall due to the monsoon, or the calamitous cyclonic Mandous, the city’s never-say-die spirit is evident with the way it bounced back immediately.

While hundreds of trees were uprooted on Friday night and Saturday morning, within hours, the debris and fallen trees were removed by the Corporation staffers. Thanks to their determination, Chennaites saw the dawn with rarely a mark of the storm.

Usually, the civic body would deploy people to remove trees several hours after the storm dies down. But on Sunday, workers were seen in action despite the blustering wind, braving relentless showers, and power cut. Cleaning up the city when the storm was still in range is no small effort. Workers risked their lives to ensure normalcy returned to the city.

When this reporter had a chat with a few workers, they expressed their anguish over being part-time workers and contract staffers outsourced through a private company. Though it’s an extensive process for the government to make them permanent employers, the corporation can at least acknowledge their courage and effort by offering them rewards and prizes.

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