Renuka and her family, including her young daughter, had no option but to move to the terrace of their small home at Rajamma Layout in Uttarahalli and wait for the rains to cease. Rainwater that gushed into their home around 4 a.m. on Monday has destroyed many of their household items.
“I could not send my daughter to school; her books are all wet. We only have the clothes on our back,” she said and added that their provisions have been damaged by the rain.
The heavy rains that lashed the city late on Sunday night and in the wee hours of Monday wreaked havoc, causing drains to overflow and flood homes. This was the first major flood in the city, with the monsoon having been relatively weak so far. According to Karnataka State Natural Disaster Monitoring Centre (KSNDMC), the rainfall, which started around 12.40 a.m., was concentrated in south Bengaluru, with Anjanapura recording the highest rainfall.
The basements of many apartments were flooded and vehicles damaged. BBMP officials said they received complaints of flooding from apartments on Hulimavu Main Road, Ashrama Main Road, Gottigere and other areas near Bannerghatta Road. Many roads resembled rivulets what with the drains overflowing.
Collapsed stormwater drain
A.N. Shankaranarayana, a resident of Hulimavu Lake Road in BTM 6th Stage, woke up to the sound of a wall crashing around 4 a.m. on Monday. “We came out of our house to find the retaining wall of the nearby stormwater drain had collapsed. The drain is an inlet to the Hulimavu lake. Soon, water started gushing into homes near the road. We scrambled to shift our belongings to the first floor," he said.
Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) officials came around 8.30 a.m. to drain the water from the homes.
A resident of Deodate Public School Road in Vasanthapura complained that despite reaching out to the BBMP about the overgrowth in the raja kaluve (big stormwater drain) in the locality, no action had been taken. "Roads in the area are waterlogged, as water overflowed from the drain," he said.
The deluge caused drains to overflow in Vajarahalli, Kanakapura Road, Anugraha Layout in Bilekahalli, Dattatreya Temple Road in Hosakerehalli, Kumba Lake City and Deo Enclave near Kodichikkanahalli, Gummaiah Layout in Padmanabhanagar, and parts of Rajarajeshwarinagar.
The rains also saw trees come down near Pai Hotel in Jayanagar, Thimmaiah Road, Jnanajyothinagar in Rajarajeshwarinagar, Nagarbhavi Circle, Shankar Math Main Road near Nandini Layout and Vidyanagar bus stand near Girinagar.
Gottigere, Bannerghatta Road worst affected
For a third year, residents in Gottigere near Bannerghatta Road bore the brunt of heavy rain.
In 2017, when heavy rains enveloped the city between August and October, these areas saw frequent flooding. Monday was no different.
Himagiri Meadows on Bannerghatta Road, Pragathi Apartment on Hulimavu Main Road and other apartments on Ashrama Main Road were flooded.
Vijay Prabhu, president of Himagiri Meadows Residents’ Association, said due to some obstructions in the drain, the water overflowed and flooded the gated community.
Several areas in Uttarahalli also were flooded. According to Ganamurthy, a resident of Kishore Residency in Rajamma Layout, flooding was common during the monsoon. “We have been struggling with this issue for the past three years. However, the intensity of rains and the extent of flooding were more severe this time,” he said.
Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) officials claimed that haphazard development in these areas led to floods during heavy rain. BBMP has put forth a proposal to strengthen the drainage network between Subbarayanakere and Gottigere lake, apart from drains between Devarakere, Dorekere and Vrushabhavathy Valley to address inundation in Uttarahalli. “That apart, we are proposing to build earthen drains, which will not just allow water to percolate, but will also ensure there is no flooding in these areas,” they added.
More rains expected
The city is likely to receive more rainfall over the next five days. The rains are being attributed to the circulation (extending from mean sea level up to 1.5 km) over south interior Karnataka and a trough extending from north interior Karnataka to the Gulf of Mannar, across south interior Karnataka.
Channabasannagouda S. Patil, scientist and director of the Indian Meteorological Department, Bengaluru, told The Hindu that these two systems were likely to trigger light to moderate rainfall across many parts of the city over the next five days.
Though the intensity of rain may come down over the next few days, heavy rains may be expected in some isolated places.