Flyover work, rain, slush hardly dampen the shopping spree
CHENNAI: Those who ventured out in the shopping area of T.Nagar on Sunday are likely to have learnt a lesson, jostling, elbowing and pushing.
The area around Panagal Park, particularly South Usman Road, probably had most of the city’s population shopping for clothes and jewellery ahead of Deepavali. With flyover construction work in progress and the rain, people had to manoeuvre through the slush, puddles of water and of course, thousands of people.
Though traffic police personnel posted near the Duraiswamy subway and Panagal Park were regulating motor vehicles and people, the number were understandably huge, this being the last weekend before Deepavali.
To walk about 10 metres on South Usman Road towards T. Nagar bus stand, it took pedestrians nearly half an hour, along the pavement shops. Since plastic sheets were tied above these shops, as is done every monsoon, one particular stretch turned out to be rather suffocating.
There was hardly a few millimetres’ distance between one pedestrian and another so much so that everybody could hear what others were saying. “If only my bonus had come earlier, we would not have to go through this,” a middle-aged man told his wife. “Having come all the way, let us buy everything today. I cannot come here another day,” said a woman to her children.
In fact, a security person at a popular store in the area said people turned up here as early as 7 a.m. and demanded the store be opened.
The shopping spree aside, several parts of the city were water-logged following rain on Sunday. Interior roads in Pudupet, Egmore, Kilpauk, Purasawalkam, Perambur and Kolathur were water-logged. A total of 22 mm rainfall was recorded in Nungambakkam and Meenambakkam received 6 mm rainfall between 8.30 a.m. and 8.30 p.m. on Sunday.
Motorists had to make do with the little space available, as several arterial roads, including Purasawalkam High Road, the stretch near St. Andrew’s Kirk on Poonamallee High Road, near the railway station on Perambur High Road and near Egmore Railway Station, were water-logged. In Velachery, water logging was reported on some roads of AGS Colony and near Vijay Nagar bus terminus.
Pedestrians were forced to walk in the middle of the road in several areas, including Mylapore and T.Nagar, risking accidents owing to water stagnation and absence of footpaths. The situation in north Chennai has not seen much improvement and several roads still remain inundated, according to residents. Water-logging poses a problem for several areas in western suburbs too. A resident of Srinivasapuram in Korattur said water had entered into several houses in the area. “We have to wade through two to three-feet water to reach our houses,” he said.
The Meteorological Department forecasts a generally cloudy sky and a few spells of rain that may be heavy at times in the city on Monday.