Chennai: Thirty six hours, it took just 36 hours of non-stop rain to submerge the low lying areas of the city and its surrounding districts.
The State government and the Greater Chennai Corporation claim that necessary work has been done. But the public in some pockets feel more could have been done.
Most low-lying areas of North Chennai, Vyasarpadi, Pulianthope, Kodungaiyur, Perambur, Korattur, Avadi, Ambattur and many localities in Kancheepuram district, especially Mudichur and Chitlapakkam, have been flooded.
Stagnant water naturally affects the flow of traffic and in accordance with that, motorists from North Chennai limped their way to their destinations. At Vyasarpadi, an MTC bus got stuck in the rain water at the Jeeva subway, leading to traffic snarls between Pulianthope and Vyasarpadi.
People living in flood-prone areas left their homes in search of safe places, fearing the fury of water. Residents of Varadharajapuram in Mudichur were seen moving out with their belongings to areas which are not likely to be affected by the rains.
Similarly, many opined that lots of people living in low-lying areas are readying their belongings to move out, in case things get worse.
The Electricity Board has shut down power in places where water has stood and in many places, overhead cables were seen to have fallen down, possibly due to high voltage.
Standing water at the Chennai Central railway station saw Kovai express delayed by upto four hours.
Sources said the Greater Chennai Corporation has 176 relief camps, four public kitchens and 44 medical teams ready, along with nine disaster management teams. From the lessons learned from earlier experiences, they have boats ready to be deployed as well. NDRF teams have also been put on alert, sources said.
The Chennai Corporation has also said it has 173 machines including 11 high power saw cutters to remove any trees that might fall due to heavy showers. With the Met department forecasting that more rains are to come in the subsequent days, the situation seems to be under control, but only by a slight margin.
Meanwhile, Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami today took stock of the situation in Salem and directed officials to ensure people are not affected because of rains.
‘Don’t compare with 2015 floods’
Minister for Municipal Administration, Rural Development and Implementation S P Velumani speaking to mediapersons after visiting relief works in the city, said, “We have been doing relief works in Chennai. CM has taken action and all officers, including IAS officers and Corporation officials have been working day and night.”
The Minister asked people not compare the monsoon rains with the 2015 December deluge. ’95 per cent of drains and canals have been desilted. Almost 4,500 houses that were built on waterways have been demolished as well.’
Here to help
People can call 044-2536 7823, 044-2538 4965, 044-2538 3694 and 044-2561 9206 for complaints. Help can be asked through two WhatsApp numbers as well. People in trouble can send texts to 9445477662 and 9445477205. For queries regarding broken electric cable line, people can call 1077. All these helpline numbers are released by the Greater Chennai Corporation.
176 relief camps
4 public kitchens
44 medical teams
9 disaster management teams
11 high power saw cutters