‘Ensure least inconvenience to people during monsoon’

Despite being at odds regarding the administration in the Capital, Lieutenant-Governor Vinai Kumar Saxena and Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Wednesday came together to assess the city’s monsoon preparedness.

Mr. Saxena, Mr. Kejriwal and Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia chaired a high-level meeting on the issue at Raj Niwas.

The leaders assessed a plan of action, detailing monsoon preparedness, with an aim to ensure “least inconvenience” to citizens due to waterlogging, overflowing drains and the falling of trees, Raj Niwas said.

The meeting that had representatives from almost multiple government departments as well as the Delhi police among others, went on for over an hour. The L-G and the Chief Minister had a one-on-one interaction after the meeting, according to government sources.

Raj Niwas said the leaders conveyed ithat they “did not differ on anything aimed at the well-being of the people of Delhi” and that everyone had to “work together for the city.”

According to Raj Niwas, Mr. Saxena and Mr. Kejriwal were also on the same page when it came to ensuring that all government departments work in sync and “let the people know that their government is working for them.”

Long-term measures

After reviewing a presentation with regard to the efforts and status of de-silting of drains, laying of alternate pipelines to drain out waterlogged at vulnerable sites, deployment of pumps and vans, both the leaders asked officials to put in place comprehensive long-term measures to deal with the problems of overflowing and waterlogging rather than dealing with the issue in a ‘Crisis Management Mode’ as has been happening till now. 

According to Raj Niwas, the L-G directed officials to simultaneously start the exercise of building sink holes, measuring 6-8 inch in diameter, lined with perforated pipes and covered suitably at the sites prone to waterlogging along drains and DJB sewer lines prone to flooding.

This was necessary so that water could be instantly absorbed and used for recharge of groundwater in such locations, the L-G said. The Chief Minister seconded the idea and directed officials to comply with it, Raj Niwas stated.

While the L-G stressed on proactive preparedness on the part of the authorities after putting all systems in place and deploying Quick Response Teams (QRT) equipped with all instruments, the Chief Minister, underlined the importance of enhancing and improving the work being done by various agencies.

It was also decided that the waste or malba taken out of the drains after de-silting be lifted immediately and transported to designated sites rather than leaving them on the edge of the drains. 

The L-G asked for this removal to be photographed, transportation to be videographed and updated on the websites the agencies concerned. 

For the purpose of de-silting of drains, it was directed that pressurised hosing be undertaken so as to forcefully move the silt downstream and not letting it settle down. 

Similarly, to ensure that caving of roads and pathways does not take place during the rainy season, it was directed that proper compaction be done after completion of all civic works. 

In an important move, officials were directed to construct concrete cemented roads at sites that were prone to waterlogging and flooding rather than the prevalent bitumen that is in practice as of now, Raj Niwas said. 

As far as the long-term plan of action is concerned the L-G and the Chief Minister agreed upon a comprehensive study of Delhi’s drains, gradient and catchment areas so that excess water could be transported to natural/artificial pits, depressions and lowlands in the city with the purpose of long-term storage. 

The leaders directed officials to explore the possibility and come up with a time-bound plan for laying of alternate pipelines for stormwater drainage. 

The Drainage Master Plan that had been pending for years together was instructed to be expeditiously finalised with the help of experts and domain-specific agencies, Raj Niwas said.

The L-G reiterated that the aim should be to ensure least inconvenience to people if not zero, and all departments and agencies involved should be seen doing so with seamless coordination and cooperation. 

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Printable version | Aug 12, 2022 1:32:55 am |