Chennai

Those 84 hours without power

It was only on Thursday that water receded in many stretches of Perumbakkam —Photo: Special Arrangement

It was only on Thursday that water receded in many stretches of Perumbakkam —Photo: Special Arrangement  

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On Wednesday night, residents of a building at the Gandhi Nagar Society layout in Perumbakkam finally had electricity restored after 84 hours without it, said Rajiv Rajan, a resident.

By then, mobile phones had run out of battery, nobody could leave the building to buy milk or groceries and rainwater kept entering the compound. There had been no power supply since Monday morning.

“It was like staying on an island. Water came into the car park, and another heavy spell could have flooded our house. We could not move out for almost a week. Insects and snakes came in, and there was no way to communicate as mobiles went dry. We had no supplies,” said Mr. Rajan.

For Laxman Dissy, a security guard at the building, it was a nightmare – he wasn’t expecting a flood when he arrived in Chennai from Nepal this August.

“Everyone told me there was water shortage in Chennai. But now, my house is flooded. I had to barricade my door with things from the house to prevent water from getting in,” he said. Laxman spent three days without power this week, sleeping two nights on the staircase of the building where he works.

“Luckily, I had some masoor dal with me, so I ate that with rice. But there was no way to go out to even buy salt,” he said. He ran out of bread and vegetables, and watched in increasing horror as the water kept pouring in. “For 30 hours, the water just stayed,” he said.

As the city slowly limps back to normality, their road is still waterlogged, and is now badly damaged, said Mr. Rajan.

“Most of the roads in the 1.8-km stretch from Sholinganallur to our building have potholes filled with mud now,” he said.



Residents of Perumbakkam recall that nightmarish period when stepping out was difficult, mobile phones died and insects and snakes crawled in at will



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Printable version | Jan 19, 2020 4:03:59 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/chennai/those-84-hours-without-power/article7904981.ece

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