Chronic spots flood, but most of Kolkata stays above water – Times of India

Kolkata News
KOLKATA: After last Monday, when large parts of the city were inundated and the waterlogging persisted in some localities for days, there was visible relief among citizens as Kolkata was largely spared inundation on Wednesday.
Other than the chronic problem in the Behala-Kidderpore belt, the only other zones that were waterlogged were Golf Gardens and neighbourhoods along the east of EM Bypass that had remained waterlogged for four-five days last week.

Waterlogging in Mukundapur and Golf Gardens on Wednesday
While the usual problem areas, like Muktarambabu Street, Thanthania, Amherst Street, Surya Sen Street and Camac Street, were waterlogged during a sharp spell of rain early in the morning, the water cleared out by afternoon. “Usually, there is knee-deep water when there is heavy rain. But on Wednesday, the waterlogging was only shin-deep. Since there was only a light drizzle for the rest of the day, the water cleared out fairly quickly,” said Abhimanyu Agarwal, who lives near Ram Mandir on Central Avenue.
In the rest of the city, too, the waterlogging cleared out by forenoon in some places and afternoon in others as the light drizzle was well within the city’s drainage infrastructure capacity. The city’s storm water channels are capable of clearing 10mm in an hour. In areas where the drainage upgrade project under Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM) has been implemented, the capacity has increased to 15mm-20mm per hour.
KMC’s drainage department and conservancy staff had worked overtime ahead of the cyclone and heavy rainfall warning and that was evident from the clear gully pits that helped water recede fast. In most places, pits clogged by plastic polybags were the primary cause of waterlogging if the rain is not beyond 10mm per hour. In some pockets though, there was no relief from misery.
At Golf Gardens, the water on Prince Gholam Mohammad Shah Road was knee-deep. The inundation in internal lanes was higher by late morning. However, the level began to recede in the afternoon after pumps were deployed to flush out the water. “We were really concerned in the morning, but after the pumps began to operate, there was hope,” said Golf Green Citizens’ Association president Shovban Datta. Though a drainage infrastructure augmentation project has been done in the area, the outlet has not been completed yet, which is causing the problem.
Parts of Mukundapur, particularly the roads in front of AMRI and Medica, went under water again, causing problems for hospital staff, patients and their relatives. “We don’t know when there will be some relief for us,” said a doctor.
In Nayabad, too, there was shin-deep water with the level rising to knee-deep in some places. This forced the power utility to switch off electricity to the area in order to prevent electrocution accidents.
“We are praying that it does not rain much and that the water clears out by Thursday,” said brand consultant Amit Banerjee.
“These areas will only get relief when a drainage upgrade project is carried out. Though work has been sanctioned under Kolkata Environment and Infrastructure Improvement Project (KEIIP) funded by the Asian Development Bank, work is yet to begin,” said a civic official.