KOCHI: ‘Operation Breakthrough’, launched to find a permanent solution for Kochi’s long waterlogging issue, will be completed in 90 days. Its master plan will be released on December 31. The district collector will lead the works related to the initiative, the committee formed to find a solution to the city’s waterlogging issue decided at its meeting on Monday. The 90-day deadline was fixed at the meeting.
“Operation Breakthrough will be based on Operation Anantha which helped solve waterlogging issues in Thiruvananthapuram city. A map of the Kochi’s canals and drains through which water can be drained is being prepared. Block in drains and canals will be cleared soon. Both short and long-term remedies for waterlogging will be found,” said District Collector S Suhas said.
At the meeting, a technical committee headed by Suhas and comprising executive engineers of various departments was formed. A special cell, comprising officials from the district disaster management wing, corporation, revenue, survey and police departments, will evaluate the operation’s progress daily, it was decided.
The Kochi Metro Rail Ltd will assess the quality of the work. Since the project is being carried out under the Disaster Management Act, no agencies or department can object to and stall its progress. The heavy downpour on October 21 had flooded various parts of the city, forcing 2,153 persons to take shelter in 11 relief camps. The High Court had pulled up the corporation officials for their lethargic approach to the waterlogging issue. As a flood-mitigation plan, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan had held a meeting, in which Kochi Mayor Soumini Jain was present, and decided to launch Operation Breakthrough.
Chief Secretary Tom Jose chaired Monday’s meeting in which District Collector S Suhas, City Police Commissioner Vijay Sakhare, KMRL managing director Alkesh Kumar, the corporation secretary, GCDA secretary and officials of Kerala Water Authority (KWA), Railways and other district-level departments were present.
Op Anantha’s success a driving factor
Launched in 2015, Operation Anantha marked the first-ever use of Section 25 of the Disaster management Act to clean up encroachments. Its success has given authorities in Kochi the hope that there will be no flood and waterlogging in Kochi from next Monsoon.
plan of action
Op Breakthrough master plan to be released on December 31
Map of canals and drains under preparation
Blockages in drains and canals to be cleared
District Collector to lead the works
Technical committee headed by collector formed
Special cell, comprising officials from District Disaster Management wing and Corporation, Revenue, Survey and Police departments, to evaluate the progress of Operation Breakthrough daily.