Heavy rains remind Mumbai of nightmare three years ago

July 26th, 2008 - 6:49 pm ICT by IANS  

Mumbai, July 26 (IANS) Mumbai once again bore the onslaught of the revival of monsoon with heavy rains lashing the city and surrounding areas since Friday evening, spelling a wet weekend for citizens. It was three years to the day when Mumbai had faced its worst flodds in living memory. In the 24 hours to Saturday morning, the meteorological office in Colaba in south Mumbai recorded 133.2 mm rainfall while the northern suburbs received 77.4 mm, the weather bureau said.

The season’s total rainfall so far has been 1,262 mm in the city and 1,382.1 mm in the suburbs, an official from the weather bureau said.

On account of incessant rain, life was thrown out of gear all over the city, which was Saturday observing the third anniversary of the mega floods of July 26, 2005.

The Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai Saturday morning appealed to citizens “not to be worried” by the heavy rains as the civic body was prepared to tackle any eventuality.

The suburban trains, the city’s lifeline, were running 25-45 minutes late in different sectors in the morning, delaying office-goers.

Although there were no disruptions in flight schedules at the domestic and international airports, many fliers faced difficulties in reaching or leaving the airports as cabbies refused to ply in areas affected by rain and traffic jams.

Though many offices were closed for the day, many others downed shutters and allowed staff to go home early, said Sunitha Iyer, a marketing executive with a private company, who spent barely two hours at work.

Waterlogging was reported from the vulnerable low-lying areas like Mumbai Central, Kalbadevi, Mazagaon, Parel, parts of Worli, Mahim, Dharavi, Sion, Ghatkopar, Chembur, Khar, Santacruz, Jogeshwari, Malad, Kandivali and Dahisar.

There was between three to five feet water in the three important subways at Santa Cruz, Andheri and Malad, leading to big traffic jams.

These and other subways at Kandivali and Khar are important east-west links, apart from the flyovers at Dahisar, Borivali, Goregaon and Bandra suburbs.

Some major residential and business complexes like Thakur Complex and Bandra-Kurla Complex were also hit by waterlogging of up to two feet.

With no signs of rainfall stopping, Mumbaikars are bracing for the worst as the high tide will set in the Arabian Sea later in the evening.

Other cities in Maharashtra like Nagpur, Pune, Aurangabad, Sholapur, Nashik and Kolhapur also recorded rainfall ranging from scanty to heavy in the 24 hours to Saturday afternoon.

Mahabaleshwar, the popular hill resort nestling in the Western Ghats, recorded 51.4 mm of rain since Friday, highest in the state after Mumbai.

The neighbouring state of Goa also witnessed a downpour and notched 49.3 mm rainfall.

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