Rain throws Delhi out of gear, unleashes chaos
IGI airport flooded; nightmare on swamped roads
Incessant rain in the capital on Saturday claimed the life of a five-year-old boy in south Delhi’s Mehrauli area. It also proved to be a nightmare for motorists as massive traffic jams were reported on Saturday from all over of the city.
According to the police, Chirag was returning home from school when he fell into an open drain around 1:30 pm. “People saw the incident and dragged him out of the drain,” a police officer said.
He was admitted to AIIMS trauma centre, where he was declared brought dead. A case under Section 304A (causing death by negligence) of the Indian Penal Code has been registered with the Mehrauli police station.
Major arterial roads across the city witnessed bumper-to-bumper traffic due to waterlogging. Vehicles were forced to navigate through the flooded streets. Within an hour of the showers, there was chaos on almost all the arterial roads as traffic signals did not function properly and choked drains flooded the streets.
The rain also flooded the forecourt of the arrival area of IGI airport, causing inconvenience to passengers coming out of Terminal 3.
There was, however, no disruptions in other airport operations, as there was water logging only at the arrival area of the airport, officials said.Flight operations at the airport largely remained unaffected. A Malaysian Airline flight arriving here from Kuala Lumpur was diverted to Ahmedabad.
As the rain reduced visibility at the runway, four flights arriving here were asked to take a go-around.
A spokesperson from Delhi International Airport Limited, which operates and manages the airport, said despite heavy rain at the airport, all passenger facilities remain completely unaffected including the baggage belts.
“All flight operations are fully normal at the moment except one flight which was diverted and four flights had to go around for a few minutes,” he said.
Civic officials said there were reports of trees being uprooted in different colonies, disrupting power supply in some areas. Even metro commuters were affected as the water entered Saket and Malviya Nagar metro stations on the Jahangirpuri-Huda City Centre line. Metro officials restricted movement of commuters from these two stations and trains were not allowed to stop for two-three hours.
“The road outside the Saket metro station was completely submerged. I somehow managed to enter the station. But I remained stuck for half an hour as trains did not stop at the station. The power supply was perhaps disconnected as a precautionary measure. At the station, sale of tokens was stopped and smart cards became ineffective at exit and entry points,” said Sudhesh Lal, an IT professional. Some commuters claimed that they were stuck in different parts as even autorickshaws and radio cabs refused to ply on the flooded streets.
“Trains were was not allowed to stop at Malviya Nagar in the noon as water got collected on the platform and concourse area. Saket metro station was closed in the evening due to water-logging outside the station,” a metro spokesperson said.
Waterlogging was reported from ITO, Laxmi Nagar, Moti Bagh, Kashmere Gate, Minto Road, Munirka, Dwarka, Dhaula Kuan, Mathura Road, Mandi House, Karkardooma, Bhairon Marg, Filmistan, Rani Jhansi Road, Azad Market, Najafgarh Road, Dwarka link road and Najafgarh road among others.
“Dwarka link was submerged in water. I could navigate through the road as I was driving an SUV. I saw two-three compact cars which broke down on the stretch,” said Ashwani Kumar Singh, a resident of Uttam Nagar.
Even as the civic agencies blamed each other for the mess, the Delhi traffic police issued an advisory asking commuters to avoid some badly affected road. “Kindly avoid entire Mathura Road - Purana Quila Road as there is water-logging. Avoid Karkarduma metro station road, apart from ITO (A point,W point), Mandi House and Mathura Road as they are waterlogged,” traffic police posted on its Facebook page.
The national capital on Saturday received 123 mm precipitation, which brought the temperature down in the city by four degrees. The maximum and minimum temperatures hovered between 32 and 25 degrees Celsius.