After identifying the reason due to which the Hindmata area in Dadar gets submerged in almost waist-deep water every monsoon, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) would lay additional underground drains up to the Britannia pumping station on Reay Road. The project of laying additional drains undertaken under the Brihanmumbai Storm Water Disposal (BRIMSTOWAD) System will take 14-15 months to be completed and would cost Rs 13.65 crore to the civic body.
According to BMC officials, the civic body has also decided to reconstruct the arch-shaped British-era underground drain to increase its water-carrying capacity from 25 mm to 50mm.
The existing drain is around 88 m long and passes through Devrukhkar Road to Madke Buva Chowk in Parel. The drainage line helps reduce rainwater from Hindmata, Parel and Naigaon areas.
After the commissioning of the Britannia pumping station, the BMC had claimed that Hindmata – a chronic flooding spot – and its surrounding areas would be free of water-logging. But despite the Britannia pumping station being functional, the entire Hindmata area went under water during rain in the city this year, which raised huge question marks over the civic body’s claims of monsoon preparedness.
BMC chief Ajoy Mehta had ordered an inquiry to probe the functioning of the Britannia pumping station and reasons why water accumulated at Hindmata and Gandhi Market took hours to recede, even after commissioning of the pumping station.
The investigation report had recommended that the civic body needs to take up installation of additional drains to prevent water-logging at Hindmata area. It had said it should be built from Madkebuva Chowk via Lalbaug to Kalachowki and connected to ensure proper discharge of water.
“The water is not discharged quickly as there is slight difference in the slope levels between Hindmata area and Britannia pumping station. So, the water is not brought to the pumping station quickly. So, we have decided to lay an additional drain under the footpaths along the route,” said a senior official of the Storm Water Drain (SWD) Department.
The civic body has appointed a contractor to reconstruct the dilapidated British-era drain. “The drain covers most part of Hindmata and Parel areas. The Britannia pumping station can now handle only 50 mm of rain in an hour. But the capacity of the underground drain, constituting 25 per cent of sewer lines, cannot be increased. Hence, additional drains are required to ease the flooding problem at Hindmata, besides reconstructing the existing ones,” said an official.
V H Khandkar, the Chief Engineer, SWD, said the civic body is also looking forward to resolve issues in other flood -prone and low-lying areas across the city. “After Hindmata, there are plans to replace old and dilapidated British-era drains in other low-lying areas like Byculla, Mumbai Central, Currey Road, Elphinstone, Mahalaxmi and even Worli. Hindmata being a major problem every year, is on our priority list.” Khandkar said.
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