As monsoon draws closer, residents of Thane are living in the fear of 2017 rerun, when the Vartak Nagar and Kavesar nullahs — the largest in the area — had overflowed and breached compound walls of housing societies. Residents claim that if due attention is not paid to desilting the two nullahs, the same situation could reoccur this year.
“The water had been brimming in the Kavesar nullah for a day, when at night we heard a loud noise. The water from the nullah breached the compound walls and entered the ground floor flats in our society overnight,” Rita Singh, a resident of a society at Vijay Garden, located near Kavesar nullah, said while recalling the 2017 incident.
Last year, Singh said, water had reached the compound of their society. “…but we had already dug some trenches, so it didn’t enter the houses,” she said.
“The Kavesar nullah is a wide body and is completely choked with dumps, debris and fallen branches. Even inside the nullah, shrubs have grown on mud has accumulated. Where is the space for water to flow?” activist Ketan Shah said.
He added, “It will take a long time to clean it, and the work on it should have already begun.”
Sharing the similar fate is the Vartak nullah, located at Vartak Nagar. “The societies will face severe waterlogging if the nullah is not cleaned, as it is choked with garbage and debris. People are to be blamed equally, as they dump all their waste in the nullah,” Damini Kolhe, a resident of the area, said.
On Wednesday, the Thane Municipal Commissioner started a three-day observation for the monsoon preparations and started visiting the nullahs, already choking to brim.
“The commissioner has ordered all concerned departments to finish cleaning and desilting the nullahs as soon as possible. He also asked for high-power pumps to ensure that there is no waterlogging in front of Kasarwadavli Dmart,” an official from the TMC said.
“We hope that the work is not just on papers, but actually the nullahs are broadened and desilted so that water does not enter our houses. The commissioner has asked the departments, but he should check from time to time if his orders are being followed,” Rashmeet Chawla, a resident of Vartak Nagar, said.