Rain chokes roads: PWD,civic bodies begin blame game over monsoon mess

Traffic Police writes to PWD,identifying 67 areas that are prone to waterlogging

Written by Express News Service | New Delhi | Published: July 23, 2013 1:08 am

While the capital came to standstill again on Monday,with water-logging leading to massive traffic jams on arterial roads,the civic bodies and the PWD continued to blame each other for not doing their jobs properly.

The traffic police,which has been working continuously to ease the jams and man the traffic

said it had formally written to the Public Works Department (PWD) after Saturday’s fiasco,identifying 67 areas where water logging was a recurrent problem.

To the list,the traffic police have added another 25 areas where traffic was thrown out of gear due to water-logging this year. The additions include Saket,Ferozshah Road,Adchini,Naraina,Ma Anandmai Marg near Okhla and Delhi Gate.

Additional Commissioner of Police (traffic) Anil Shukla said,“Before monsoon every year we send a letter to the PWD requesting them make preparations to deal with water-logging. We provide them a list of areas where the problem is recurrent. This year too,we wrote to them identifying a set of new places where traffic slowed down due to water-logging. And traffic snarls on Saturday,we wrote to them again,asking them to make appropriate arrangements.”

Shukla said areas including Delhi Gate near Firozshah Kotla stadium and Naraina faced the problem of water logging because of Metro construction. “Due to construction work,the roads have become low lying,which leads to clogging of water,” he said.

The showers on Monday morning resulted in water logging in several areas. Massive traffic jams were reported in Dhaula Kuan,Badarpur-Mahipalpur road,ITO,South Extension,Janakpuri,Laxmi Nagar,Azadpur,Bhawal and Okhla.

In several areas,traffic police personnel were seen breaking dividers on roads,trying to channel the water clogged in carriageway to the other side.

Meanwhile,the civic bodies and the Public Works Department engaged in a blame game,with each claiming that the other was responsible for the monsoon mess.

PWD minister Raj Kumar Chauhan said,“We have hired people on contract to clean drains. We pay Rs 250 per tonne to dump silt in the corporations’ landfill sites. But,the civic bodies don’t allow us to dump silt in South Delhi.” Chauhan claimed that PWD spent Rs 20 crore on desilting.

Chauhan also claimed that 1250 km road length under the PWD had been properly cleaned by the agency.

“Water logging happens because Delhi has an old drainage system. The government is working on new drainage in the Master plan,” Chauhan said,adding that the water tended to clear out in an hour after heavy rain.

Chairman of standing committee,North Municipal Corporation,Ram Kishan Singhal met the Lieutenant-Governor Najib Jung on the issue.

“Government agencies like the DDA and the PWD are not doing their jobs. PWD does not have the required infrastructure for desilting. We have been desilting drains before they took over roads from us in 2012. They should be made accountable for not doing their job.” he said.

However,Chauhan said,“The MCD should do their work properly before pointing a finger at us.”

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