Knee-deep in water, north Chennaiites protest

Major arterial roads and links still submerged; with no power, residents remain in the dark, they say no effort is being taken to drain the water out 
A slum in Saidapet, Chennai, got submerged in water due to flooding of Adyar river.  (Photo | Shiba Prasad Sahu, EPS)
A slum in Saidapet, Chennai, got submerged in water due to flooding of Adyar river. (Photo | Shiba Prasad Sahu, EPS)

CHENNAI: On the second day of the floods, water is yet to recide from most of the  houses in north Chennai. In some houses, there was knee-deep water. At least in two places, residents took to the streets to protest against the ‘negligence’ of officials and local body authorities. With no power they remained in dark. 

Around 100 residents at Shanthi Nagar in Vyasarpadi sat on the road in protest, alleging neither the ward councillor nor the MLA visited the area. “Our ward councillor and MLA are missing. Like in other part of the city, no step has been taken to pump out the water, “ said J Sudhakar, one of the residents. 

The resident also said their main problem is snakes entering the houses. “At least four snakes entered my house. There is knee-level water and I am sitting in terrace. I couldn’t even use the toilet. There is no power, no drinking water or proper food,” said J Kumar, another resident. 

Dinesh Bose said there are families living on the streets and all of them have been affected. “From Monday we have been complaining, and no help came to us till now, “ said Dinesh Bose. S Devi said there are babies, elderly and sick people at some houses, and they are having a difficult time. 

Residents shifting to safe locality as Mathur in Chennai got
inundated after heavy rains on Monday | P Jawahar 

At Old Washermenpet, residents staged a protest, as there was still knee-deep water inside the ground floor of the houses. “There is no power, and no action was taken to pump out the water. Around 500 families are affected. Our MLA assured that water would be pumped out before night. We withdrew the protest after the assurance. If that doesn’t happen, we will protest again,” said Mohammed Thaheer, a resident of Old Washermenpet. 

Almost all streets in MKB Nagar, Cross Streets, Central Cross, West Cross, Mullai Nagar Main Road, Kodungaiyur, areas close to Captain Cotton Canal have been flooded, affecting hundreds of families. The overflowing Captain Cotton Canal near Kodungaiyur and Mullainagar inundated many houses. After Basin Bridge and main roads were flooded, they were closed for traffic. 

Many roads in Perambur remained flooded on Tuesday.  BB Road, Ganeshpuram, Kalyanapuram Road remained inaccessible. People in Mullai Nagar had to wade through almost chest-deep water to buy essentials like milk packets and other things. 

There was a huge demand for essentials in the area. There was a long queue in water at MKB Nagar Main Road to buy milk packets from Aavin vans. There was no power in the flooded areas even on Tuesday. 

Though the water has receded in some parts of the city, major arterials roads and links are still under water and vehicular movement is disturbed in many areas outside the core city limit. 

EVR Periyar Salai is closed from Thanthi signal to the Rippon building signal as the stretch is inundated, with water up to 3 feet. Perambur barracks road which connects northern part of the cities like Vyasarpadi to central areas like egmore is closed for vehicular movement due to heavy inundation. 

“Even the drains aren’t working and no motor is deployed to,” said R Allen, a resident of Purasaivakkam. Choolai high road, Demellows Road and Pulianthope High Road are under water. “The storm water drains are completely choked and there is no sign of draining water with motors,” said N Lalitha, a resident of Choolai. 

Around 16 streets in Arunthathiyar Nagar near Vyasarpadi are without power and food for three days as inundated water shows no sign of receding. “No helpline number is reachable and no official has visited our area,” said CB Paranthaman, a resident of Arunthathiyar Nagar.

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