Days after rain, water stagnation continues to plague many areas of Chennai – The Hindu

Chennai News

Residents of 58 localities have been put to hardship; many have alleged that rainwater is not draining because of the encroachments on nearby waterbodies

Residents of 58 localities continue to suffer because of water stagnation, even three days after Cyclone Nivar brought heavy rain to the city.

P.K. Vijaykumar, former president of the Baba Nagar Residents Welfare Association, said water stagnation in the area was caused by encroachments on drains and waterbodies.

“Civic officials should remove all encroachments from the drains. They should complete the stormwater drain [project] by removal of encroachments. The drains were not completed because of the encroachments,” he said.

Surplus canal

Residents in the Ambattur zone have pointed to issues in the development of a surplus canal from Retteri to prevent inundation. Residents of Ashok Nagar have complained about rising water levels inside their homes because of inadequate desilting of drains. “Water stagnation has been increasing on Rajamannar Salai when it rains. Officials claimed that the water level in MGR Canal was high. So the issue of water stagnation on Rajamannar Salai, which is 2 ft lower than the neighbouring areas, could not be resolved,” said a resident.

Residents of Alagappa Road and Jothi Venkatachalam Street have demanded redevelopment of drains along Poonamallee High Road to reduce water stagnation in various neighbourhoods such as Egmore and Vepery.

Restoration work

Residents of Barathidasan Colony near Kasi Theatre in the Kodambakkam zone said work on restoration of the drain by the Highways Department after the collapse of the structure had led to water stagnation.

Egmore MLA K.S. Ravichandran said Poonamallee High Road needed a better drain design to reduce water stagnation from Ega Theatre to Ripon Buildings. “The water level has increased on Purasawalkam Tana Street, Ritherdon Road and Poonamallee High Road this monsoon. Just 20% of the drains have been desilted,” he said.

Harbour MLA P.K. Sekar Babu said the homes of many residents were inundated because of the delay in the implementation of infrastructure projects based on the recommendations of flood monitoring officers in 2016.

“Wall Tax Road is flooded for most of the 2.8 km from Central to Moolakothalam. The old drain has collapsed. The proposal to build a new drain along Wall Tax Road was made by the flood monitoring officer in 2016. We received approval just a few days ago,” he said.

Residents of Osankulam at Chetpet have requested the line agencies to facilitate redevelopment of the tenements for 248 families.

“The buildings were constructed 45 years ago. The road level has increased by 2 ft. Redevelopment is the only solution,” said a resident.

As many as 190 families on Pulianthope High Road have been affected by water stagnation in their temporary houses near the K.P. Park tenements.

The residents of P.K. Colony at Pulianthope have requested redevelopment of the 578 houses as a solution to water stagnation.

About encroachments

Greater Chennai Corporation Commissioner G. Prakash visited areas like Baba Nagar, Villivakkam, on Sunday following complaints from residents about water stagnation for three days after the rain.

“All encroachments on waterways will be demolished. Engineers will design new drains, based on the existing level and pattern of the stormwater drain network. Residents have also started giving their feedback about the old drainage system,” he said.

Corporation officials said all the locations affected by water stagnation would get a better design for redevelopment of stormwater drains in two weeks.