Time to gear up for the rains

Monsoon preparations

Time to gear up for the rains

The rise and shine days of Bangalore are slowly passing by and the oncoming monsoons are offering a glimpse of their strength with the recent showers that the City has been experiencing.

But while those sitting in the comfort of their homes can
enjoy a hot cup of coffee and admire the rains, pedestrians and commuters on the streets are in for an excruciating season unless the authorities buck up.

The Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagar Palike (BBMP) seems to be fairly well-prepared this year with all the pre-monsoon activities on in full swing. M Lakshminarayana, commissioner, BBMP, informs that as preparations for the oncoming monsoons, which usually hit by the end of June and July, the focus is on preventing flooding and fixing house
collapses.

“We are most concerned about flooding and the collapse of houses in slums and low-lying areas. In the last six to eight months, the BBMP has taken up road repair, footpath repair and major de-silting measures in 400 kilometres across the City. After a recent meeting, Rs 10 crore has been commissioned to de-silt and fix the walls of stormwater drains. We’ve also started identifying and cutting weak trees as a preventive measure,” he explains.

He adds that the control rooms are well-equipped with both machinery and manpower to deal with any untoward incident. “For each zone, there will be vehicles doing the rounds at night and the control rooms will be active 24/7 for addressing any complaints or distress calls that we receive. When the monsoon strikes, they will be prepared to clear fallen trees, remove debris from the road and divert water if it’s rushing towards low-lying areas,” notes the commissioner.

T Venkataraju, engineer-in-chief, Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB), confirms that “massive de-silting has been going on in low-lying areas”. “It’s a continuous process of de-silting across the City, especially in areas like Ulsoor and places with water bodies nearby. Special attention is being given to the wards that are subject to frequent water-logging. There will also be 119 vehicles going around from morning to evening and monitoring the situation in different wards,” he informs.

But while the authorities seem ready, citizens voice their worries considering that roads are already getting clogged up even with the lightest of showers.

“As we have the monsoons setting in early this year, the authorities should take care to clear off the old twigs and leaves that could block the gutters. They should also fill up potholes on the roads, which cause a lot of inconvenience and are risky for motorists, especially two-wheelers. Another important measure is to keep a check on the weak branches of trees just above electric poles as they can be extremely dangerous during the monsoons,” opines Meghana Belavadi, a student of Seshadripuram Institute of Commerce and Management.

Roshnee, a professional, adds, “Every time the monsoons arrive, I read a lot of
reports about avoidable accidents. I just feel that it’s better to be safe than sorry. The authorities should quickly act for the City to have a safe and enjoyable monsoon.”

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