Madurai

Residents resort to road blockade in Thoothukudi

Waterlogging at Kathirvel Nagar in Thoothukudi on Sunday.   | Photo Credit: N. RAJESH

A large number of womenfolk and children from Muthammal Colony here blocked Thoothukudi-Ettayapuram Road, which halted vehicle movement on the stretch for over an hour on Sunday.

Even after the city experienced dry spell for almost two days since November 25, when there was a heavy downpour, the rescue operations, especially pumping out rainwater stagnating in many residential colonies, had not been carried out, they charged.

As the news spread, police and civic officials rushed to the spot and attempted to pacify them, but they were determined to continue with their demonstration.

Some of the womenfolk claimed that even after three days, not a single officer designated to the street/ward had visited them. The mobile phones of the officers were either busy or there was no response. “We waited patiently for two full days as the rain had badly hit all over the city...However, the nonchalant attitude of some of the senior officers irked us,” they added.

The womenfolk said that water was knee-deep in their streets. “We have not slept properly since the rain started four days ago. Occasionally, the fire and rescue service department personnel ferried the sick people in rubber boats, while Fisheries department staff offered to ferry residents in fibre boats to relief centres”.

Only on Sunday, the officials had distributed vegetables in packets charging ₹100, a resident in Bryant Nagar said and added that the officials were seen only when the elected representatives visited the wards. After ‘assurance’, they left the spot and the officials were nowhere to be seen, she lamented.

However, Collector K Senthil Raj and Corporation Commissioner Charusree said that round-the-clock rescue operations had brought in relief. The impact of the rain was very heavy and normal life had been hit badly.

“We are doing our best and all the gadgets were put to use,” they added.

Social Welfare Minister Geetha Jeevan, who visited Muthammal Colony, personally assured the agitators that she would oversee the rescue operations, following which they dispersed.

Holiday

Anticipating more rain, the district administration declared a holiday for Monday for all schools and colleges.

The traffic on the Thoothukudi-Tiruchendur stretch resumed from Sunday at 8 a.m. after the water had drained. Till Saturday night, the water was flowing on the road for at least two feet high, traffic police said.

Rainfall

Rainfall in the region: Tirucendur: 2 mm, Kayalpattinam: 1, Vilathikulam and Kadalkudi: 3 mm each, Ettayapuram: 1.2, Sattankulam: 2 and Srivaikuntam recorded 5 mm rainfall during the last 24 hours ending 6 a.m. on Sunday.


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Printable version | Jan 20, 2022 8:42:52 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Madurai/residents-resort-to-road-blockade-in-thoothukudi/article37742212.ece

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