Rain havoc continues in Bengaluru

Toll rises to 7; drain network unable to cope with unprecedented rain, says CM

October 16, 2017 12:26 am | Updated 12:26 am IST - Bengaluru

Pouring woes:  An apartment complex flooded by rainwater  at Yelahanka in Bengaluru on Sunday.

Pouring woes: An apartment complex flooded by rainwater at Yelahanka in Bengaluru on Sunday.

With a 16-year-old girl being washed away in a stormwater drain on Sunday, the death toll in the unprecedented heavy rain that has lashed Bengaluru and surrounding regions since October 13 has gone up to seven in the city alone.

The teenager, who lived with her parents in a makeshift structure in C.V. Raman Nagar, was swept away during her morning ablutions.

Chief Minister Siddaramahiah, who was in Mysuru, said the rajakaluves (stormwater drains) in Bengaluru were unable to bear the load of the heavy rain.

Mr. Siddaramaiah said he had been living in Bengaluru since 1983 and had never witnessed such rain.

“During the last 60 days, it has rained on 46 days. The drains and stormwater drains do not have the capacity to withstand so much rain,” he said.

The Chief Minister said his government had taken up repairs to, and clearance of, the 850-km stormwater drain network in the city by allocating ₹800 crore. “No government, including that of the BJP, has done it in the past,” he said.

BJP State president Yeddyurappa, who visited the affected areas on Saturday, however, squarely blamed Mr. Siddaramaiah for the deaths.

Meanwhile, reports quoting officials of the India Metereological Department said the city recorded about 1,620 mm of rainfall this year so far, breaking the record of about 1,600 mm in 2005.

The department predicted generally cloudy skies in and around Bengaluru, and a spell or two of heavy rain in some areas in the next 48 hours.

Impact on outskirts

In Ramanagara district on the outskirts of the city, a 38-year-old farmer was swept away while trying to take a video of the heavy flow of water in a canal. Search and rescue operations were called off in the evening.

National Disaster Response Force personnel on Sunday recovered the body of Pushpa, who was swept away along with her mother, Ningamma, on Friday night in the suburb of Laggere. The body was found more than 20 km away in Kumbalgodu. The search for Ningamma has been called off.

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