NAGPUR: The Maharashtra government is keeping a close watch on the situation in Mumbai and its neighbouring areas, especially in Palghar district, following heavy rains, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said today.
Palghar district has received unprecedented rainfall, he said in the Legislative Assembly here.
The National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and the Navy are on standby.
The state disaster management cell is conducting operations on the ground, Fadnavis informed the House. The Palghar district administration is on alert and arrangements are being made to help the affected people, he said.
The chief minister said in Mumbai, waterlogging has been reported from 11 places and traffic diverted in three areas. Due to waterlogging in the Vasai-Virar area, the suburban western railway line has been affected, Fadnavis said.
Currently, there is a high tide (off the coast of Mumbai), he said, adding that suction pumps are functioning at full capacity. The chief minister said an additional 150 pumps have been deployed to drain out rainwater from flooded areas.
"The state administration is monitoring the situation and keeping a close watch to ensure people do not face any hardship," Fadnavis said.
He said if necessary, a holiday will be declared for schools as the weather department has predicted very heavy rains for the next three to four days.
"If necessary, the government will take an appropriate decision," Fadnavis said.
For students who could not reach colleges for admission due to rains, the time limit for the process will be extended, he said.
As soon as the House assembled for the day's proceedings, Leader of Opposition Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil sought to know what steps the government was taking to ease hardships of people in Mumbai and its neighbouring areas. He said about 300 mm rainfall was recorded in Mumbai.
The metropolis and its adjoining areas are being pounded by heavy rains for the last two days.
In Palghar district, 400 people were stranded and communication to 40 villages was cut off.
Defence helicopters also could not take-off for relief and rescue work due to the inclement weather, Patil said.
NCP leader Ajit Pawar urged the chief minister to direct the Mumbai suburban and city guardian ministers to go back and supervise operations of the disaster management cell.
He said as the chief minister is in Nagpur, the local administration has been alert and vigilant.
The city experienced heavy rain last week, Pawar said.