AFTER FIVE days of inundation, water levels reduced in most parts of the satellite townships of Vasai, Nallasopara and Virar, much to the relief of residents. A torrential downpour between Sunday and Tuesday had left the satellite townships of Vasai, Virar and Nallasopara — located around 50 km off Mumbai — flooded and residents marooned. On Tuesday, Vasai received 299 mm of rain and in the 24 hours ending Wednesday 8.30 am, the area had received an average of 242 mm rain. However, water had not receded from the flooded areas until Friday.
Residents of the townships, who had been under ‘house arrest’ due to the flooding since Sunday, stepped out. However, mounting garbage on roads and the odour from the garbage made their life miserable. Rajesh Karnala, a Chheda Nagar resident, said while the water level had subsided, roads were piled with garbage that came along with the flood waters. “We are now worried about an epidemic. The smell from the garbage is pungent and unbearable,” he said.
Vasai Virar Municipal Corporation Commissioner Satish Lokhande said, “We have started garbage collection work on a war footing. Three thousand garbage collectors have been deployed and are working in two shifts. The situation will improve shortly”.
Meanwhile, with roads opening up and transportation services available, people could finally go to work after almost four days. Nallasopara resident Akshay Poojari said, “The situation is much better and roads are working. People can finally go to work.”
Electricity supply had resumed in most households by Thursday morning but many buildings were still facing blackout. Eight transformers belonging to the Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company Limited were submerged until Thursday night and could be restarted only by Friday. Around 1,200 households were connected then. However, in the areas still flooded, the meter boxes were submerged.
The civic body has started a campaign to create awareness about water-borne diseases. Precautionary medication for leptospirosis was distributed for free among residents. Lokhande said that so far no cases of water-borne diseases or epidemics had been reported in the civic hospitals.
Lokhande has ordered Detail-ed Project Report (DPR) to be prepared for building a stormwater drain and a holding pond. “We may take the help of IIT in preparing the DPR. Stormwater drain is a long-term solution that we are looking at right now,” he said.