Chennai

Exodus Part II: residents flee inundated neighbourhoods

Urapakkam was among the worst-affected areas with over four feet of water in many streets.

Urapakkam was among the worst-affected areas with over four feet of water in many streets.  

Hundreds of Chennaiites spent most of Tuesday night in mortal fear and left their flooded homes

For V. Shylaja, a resident of M.G. Nagar in Urapakkam, Tuesday night was a harrowing experience. Most residents in her apartment complex waited in their houses through the night on the first and second floors as they watched their area getting flooded.

“The water level was slowly rising and all we could do was sit in pitch darkness with torches and keep reassuring each other that we would be safe. The situation improved on Wednesday morning but we were still inside our homes,” she said. Her family, including a senior citizen, were later rescued and managed to get out of the area through a boat which was operated by the Blue Cross of India.

Most-affected

Urapakkam was among the worst-affected areas with over four feet of water in many streets.

A majority of the requests for rescue and relief seen across online and other message platforms came from Urapakkam, Mudichur, Velachery and Madipakkam.

Many residents of Saidapet, who were desperately waiting to be rescued from their flooded localities were seen waving red cloths to passersby in an attempt to get their attention so that they could be moved out of the area.

Situation bleak

Another resident of the area further said most of them were leaving the area as they felt that the situation will not improve in the days to come.

“There was a mass exodus from the area as people did not want to be trapped in the locality. Many families were confined to the terraces of buildings till they were rescued,” he said.

Many residents of Velachery, another severely affected area, were seen boarding the morning Mass Rapid Transit System services towards Mylapore.

“Most of us have moved out since the water levels were increasing due to overnight rains. We are shifting temporarily to relatives’ homes,” said Kanchana, who left with her family, including their dog.

Third time in two weeks

Residents of South and North Boag Road and surrounding areas in T. Nagar were forced to move out of their ground floor houses early on Tuesday morning after sewage and rainwater flooded their houses. “This is the third time in the last two weeks that many of us have been forced to move out of the area. The ordeal of moving out and returning has financially and mentally affected many of us and we are planning to stay away from the area,” said Nagamma of Thomas Road.

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Printable version | Feb 19, 2020 6:11:15 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/chennai/exodus-part-ii-residents-flee-inundated-neighbourhoods/article7943019.ece

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