Kerala

Incessant rains inundate many parts of Kochi

The Shiva temple on the banks of the Periyar river in Aluva is under water, in Kochi on August 7, 2020.

The Shiva temple on the banks of the Periyar river in Aluva is under water, in Kochi on August 7, 2020.   | Photo Credit: H. Vibhu

Many parts of Kochi and West Kochi were inundated due to incessant rains since early Friday morning.

The major hubs that remain inundated include MG Road and the KSRTC bus stand, located on the western side of Kochi. “The situation is as grim as on July 29, when much of the city remained flooded for hours. With drains overflowing, water entered many shops and other buildings on MG Road and adjacent side roads. Broken or missing slabs over drains have worsened the situation since they pose threat to safety of pedestrians,” said Rajesh Nair, convenor of MG Road Merchants Association.

The ground floor of many shops in Jew Street and Bannerjee Road too remained flooded as on Friday noon, posing health risk as well. Traffic too was affected on the stretch.

However, the Chairman of Works Standing Committee of Kochi Corporation P M Harris said that the situation is not as bad as last week's heavy rainfall. “The city generally gets flooded in the first heavy monsoon rainfall. Dumping of plastic bottles and other waste worsened the flood situation during last week's rain. The continuing severe rainfall in Idukki and the possibility of high tide might alter the situation in the city. The Corporation has deployed its personnel to clean drains and to attend to emergencies,” he said.

A senior official of the District Emergency Operation Centre that functions from the Collectorate said that the disaster management team is working in tandem with officials of health, irrigation, police and fire and rescue service to assist people in distress. Rising water level in rivers and water bodies is a cause for concern. But areas on either side of canals cleaned as part of Operation Breakthrough are relatively safe from flooding, he said.

The situation continues to be grim in parts of West Kochi, especially Chellanam. More geobags and granite boulders must be placed on a 200-m-long stretch near Bazar Road, to lessen the impact of seawater gushing into canals and causing inundation of the coast. Work is underway to desilt the canals which have been deposited with sediments brought in by sea water. Heavy rainfall in Idukki and Kottayam might intensify flooding in Ernakulam, he added.

Making matters worse is that many areas in West Kochi are containment zones, following detection of Covid cases.

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Printable version | Sep 23, 2020 10:00:51 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/incessant-rains-inundate-many-parts-of-kochi-west-kochi/article32294668.ece

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