Chennai

Neighbours show they care

They are electricians, plumbers and daily-wage labourers, but when the Adyar river started overflowing due to heavy rain and began to inundate several streets at M.G.R. Nagar, these youngsters came together to help the flood-affected.

There are more than 25,000 families in M.G.R Nagar and Jafferkhanpet localities through which the Adyar flows. A couple of days after the sluice gates of Chembarambakkam reservoir were opened, many of the streets in the area were inundated. There are nearly 25 entry points to the river from these streets.

“Once it started flooding, many residents were moved to schools, terraces of houses and shops. We ensured that all these people got food,” said N. Sukumar, a resident of the locality and a volunteer.

Many of these volunteers even started assisting the police and Tamil Nadu Fire and Rescue Services (TNFRS) personnel in rescuing stranded people.

“We used lorry tubes to bring people to safety and also to ferry their belongings,” said Siva, another volunteer.

These volunteers can easily earn Rs. 500 to Rs.1,000 a day if they go to work, but they decided to stay and help out.

“When a calamity strikes, we cannot think of our jobs. It is the life of people that is more important than money. We also tied ropes along the banks of the river to prevent people from entering it, but despite this, four persons entered and lost their lives,” said Sukumar.

The volunteers also helped trace the bodies of those who were washed away in the floods. “They were in the boat till afternoon on Friday searching for the bodies of the two boys who were washed away,” said a police officer attached to M.G.R. Nagar police station.

P. Saravanan, deputy commissioner, T. Nagar, said this was the first time there had been such a response from the public who acted as volunteers.

“We are planning to reward them for the good work they have done,” he said.


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Printable version | Jan 27, 2022 5:38:45 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/chennai/neighbours-show-they-care-about-floodaffected/article7924309.ece

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