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Tuesday, July 27, 2021

Flooding during monsoon: Work on mini pumping station at Gandhi Market nears completion, says BMC

As part of the first phase of the project at Gandhi Market, the mini-pumping station will carry floodwater till the Bharat Nagar railway nullah near King Circle, from where it will be carried to the sea.

Written by Sanjana Bhalerao | Mumbai |
Updated: July 10, 2021 4:19:29 pm
The pumping station at Gandhi Market. (Photo courtesy: Nikhil Desai)

Gandhi Market near Matunga — a low-lying area that never escapes flooding during monsoon — is likely to get some relief with work on a mini pumping station, which has a capacity to pump out 2.33 lakh litre of floodwater per minute, is in the final stages, said BMC officials.

Last monsoon, after the mini pumping station at Bandra East prevented flooding at Kalanagar junction – otherwise known for intense waterlogging – the BMC planned to replicate such stations at chronic flooding spots, including at Gandhi Market.

As part of the first phase of the project at Gandhi Market, the mini-pumping station will carry floodwater till the Bharat Nagar railway nullah near King Circle, from where it will be carried to the sea. In the second phase, floodgates will be built at the nullah to ensure that water during high tide does not enter the market during heavy rainfall.

Gandhi Market is a low-lying area on Babasaheb Ambedkar Road, an arterial road connecting eastern suburbs to the island city, and witnesses heavy traffic.

Every monsoon, high-capacity dewatering pumps are put up at Gandhi Market to drain out excess rainwater. Earlier, the water used to recede in three to four hours, but last monsoon, and on June 9 this year — when the area witnessed 2.5 ft of floodwater — it took almost eight hours for the water to recede. Municipal Commissioner Iqbal Singh Chahal had then said, “Work is going on at the site and it should take only 10 days for it to be completed.”

Nikhil Desai, an activist from the Dadar-Matunga area, said, “I hope that we get respite from waterlogging at Gandhi Market. A trial run was conducted yesterday at the site.”

After the deluge of 2005, the Chitale Committee had suggested the construction of a pumping station in Mahul to bring relief to this area but work is yet to begin. The land where the Mahul pumping station is set to come up is a salt pan owned by the Union government. Land acquisition for the project is continuing for over three years.

Planned as part of BMC’s BRIMSTOWAD project, the Mahul pumping station is envisioned to deal with waterlogging at Matunga, Kurla, Sion, Wadala and parts of Dadar.

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