BMC drainage desiltation falters in Bhubaneswar
The situation on the ground, however, presents a different picture even as more showers are predicted with activation of the monsoon.
BHUBANESWAR: After the state capital faced deluge in the first showers of monsoon in June third week, BMC announced desiltation of all the natural storm water channels as well as internal drains within two weeks.Earlier this week, when chief secretary PK Jena convened a meeting of BMC, BDA and other agencies, they informed that desiltation of all 11 water channels and four subsidiary drains have been completed.
The situation on the ground, however, presents a different picture even as more showers are predicted with activation of the monsoon. Friday’s mild rain that flooded many low-lying areas and arterial roads exposed the shoddy work. BMC has engaged 17 agencies to clean the 77km length of natural drains in the city this year.
Residents in many localities, however, claimed the drains were either partially desilted or not done at all. On Ratha Road in Old Town, where waterlogging had forced Mayor Sulochana Das to pay a visit last month and give clarification, locals said there is no change in their plight due poor cleaning of the storm water channel no-7 which remains clogged with trash and construction material on both sides of an under-construction culvert.
“To save the situation during visit of VIPs to Lingaraj temple for the ground breaking ceremony of Ekamra Project, local administration had to make temporary arrangements, covering both sides of the culvert with tin shades,” said a shop owner requesting anonymity. This resulted in spill-over of drain water to road every time a shower came down. Delay in completion of the culvert work has also made things worse.
In Nayapalli, the condition of drainage channel no-10 is equally grim. Kaushik, a local from the area, said desiltation of the drainage channel Nayapallli Haja is yet to be completed. Residents of Jayadev Vihar under ward no-26 say cleaning of the drainage channel no-4 near Bishnupriya Apartment is yet to be carried out.
In ward no 43, the condition of drainage channel no-5 is worse. Though a portion of wall of the water channel caved in after the first showers, it is yet to be repaired. “Though BMC officials make rounds to the site, repair work is yet to start. If delayed further, siltation may choke the drain leading to flooding in Laxmisagar area,” said Prabhat, a local trader.
Major drains apart, internal drains are also to be cleaned properly in many localities. In Nayapalli Behera Sahi, desiltation work started recently, while in Chintamaniswar, a large patch of desilted drain is clogged due to the ongoing restoration work of a water-body.
However, a senior official from BMC’s drainage wing said the first phase drainage desiltation work in natural water channels has been completed and siltation at present could have occurred due to the recent spells of shower. “Poor enforcement against dumping of waste into open drains is also a major reason of clogging,” he admitted.Municipal commissioner Vijay Amruta Kulange couldn’t be reached for his comments on the matter.