Hosakerehalli flood victims slam meagre aid

Too little, too late: Hosakerehalli flood victims slam meagre aid

Heavy rain, which lashed the city on Friday, has disrupted life in Dattatreya Nagar, Hosakerehalli. The rain tore down a portion of a stormwater drain wall. Credit: DH File Photo/Irshad Mahammad

A day after the BBMP claimed that the government gave compensation to 344 flood-hit families of Hosakerehalli, residents called the effort an eyewash to conceal the civic body’s ineptitude.

The help is too little even to cover half the damage, alleged residents of Dattatreya Nagar, who lived through a nightmare after a retaining wall of a stormwater drain collapsed to inundate their houses.

DH visited ten residents and two commercial establishments and found none of them satisfied with the government aid. They sat outside their homes surrounded by flood-drenched belongings kept out to dry. Foul smell lingered inside their homes though they drained out the sewage-laced flood water.

Tears welled up their eyes as they spoke of the damage to their personal belongings, including clothes.

“We have lost Rs 5 lakh or more,” said one distressed resident, drawing up a long list of damaged items like the television set, washing machine, two-wheeler, grocery items, school books, utensils, beds and clothes.

“Who is going to pay for this? Will they give Rs 25,000 each time this happens and wash their hands off? Won’t there be a permanent solution so that we don’t have to suffer this again,” the resident asked. 

Another resident, ankle swollen as he fell in the deluge, said the sewage gushed into their houses at 5 pm.

“Many would have died if this had happened in the night,” he said. “The whole neighbourhood was submerged in six to eight feet of water flowing out of the drains. We have toddlers, elderly people and those with disabilities,” he said.

Small businesses in the area are the hardest hit, as the floods have come when their establishments are already reeling under the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

A stationary shop owner helplessly examined the damaged books, pencils and toys, while a baker had to toss soggy bread and cake into the
dumpster.

'Prefer action, not promises'

Surveying the flood-hit houses in Dattatreya Nagar on Monday, Revenue Minister R Ashoka repeatedly vowed to build a stronger wall to stop the flooding from happening again.

But residents preferred action more than a promise.

“We are tired of their sympathies after each disaster,” Ranjan (name changed), a resident, said. “It is high time they work to prevent such disasters.”