The city was brought down to its knees with the heavy rain that beat down for a good part of Friday evening. The Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike’s (BBMP) new Commissioner, M. Lakshminarayana, who took charge on Friday, got a taste of what is in store for him over the next few monsoon months.
For the record, the rainfall was 91.6 mm.
The extent of the BBMP’s rain preparedness was exposed when water rushed into several homes and flooded roads across the city. The BBMP’s control rooms were flooded with distress calls.
The downpour threw life out of gear, especially those on their way back from work. Rainwater stagnated on many arterial and sub-arterial roads, affecting traffic in as disparate as Bannerghatta Road, Richmond Town, Shivananda Circle, Koramangala, Shantinagar, Silk Board Junction, Mysore Road, M.G. Road, Brigade Road, Trinity Circle and so on. With roads turning into rivulets, many vehicles, especially two-wheelers and autorickshaws, were stranded, affecting vehicular movement even more.
Once again, the Gali Anjaneya temple on Mysore Road was inundated. Several houses in Padmanabhanagar, Jayanagar, J.P. Nagar 2nd Phase, Vijayanagar, HAL 2nd Stage, Varsha Layout in C.V. Raman Nagar, HBR Layout, HRBR Layout, Nagawara, Austin Town, Ulsoor, Rajajinagar, Bilekahalli, Palace Guttahalli, Sriramapura, Prakashnagar, Magadi Road, Akkipete, Rajagopalanagar, Journalists’ Colony on J.C. Road, Sudhamanagar, Gurappanapalya, Vivekanagar, Chamarajpet, and Roshan Nagar in D.J. Halli and parts of Shivajinagar were inundated. Tree falls were reported in Hosakerehalli, BTM Layout and Srinivasanagar.
Sewage entered several houses in Prakashnagar as the lines in and around the area have been blocked. Residents were scathing about civic officials who had ignored their pleas all week. “We can’t even cook to feed our children,” rued Nirmala “This is sheer negligence on part of the BBMP and BWSSB officials and they should be held responsible for the mess.”
Sameer Ali, a resident of Roshan Nagar, said that more than 30 homes were flooded. “All our provisions and belongings have been washed away in the rain. We don’t know where to take our young children for the night.”
Local councillor Sampath Raj told The Hindu the low-lying area often gets flooded, even with a short spell of rain. Though a Rs. 60-lakh project to construct a storm-water drain had been sanctioned around six months ago, nothing has moved since then. “Work was stopped suddenly around four months ago. The officials are unresponsive,” he lamented.
Meanwhile, Mr. Lakshminarayana met zonal commissioners to ascertain the city’s rain preparedness. He directed them to monitor the control rooms and dispatch the emergency teams immediately wherever required.