Chennai rains expose claims of monsoon preparedness

Overnight rains in Chennai expose tall claims of monsoon preparedness

Many major roads in the city were flooded, inconveniencing motorists

Representative image. Credit: AFP Photo

It just took six hours of rains to expose the tall claims of "monsoon preparedness" by the civic body that manages this Southern metropolis. Thunderstorms through Wednesday night that continued on Thursday morning not just marked the arrival of the North-East Monsoon in Tamil Nadu but also the beginning of the woes of the people during the rainy season.

The rains led to waterlogging on major roads of the city, including the arterial Anna Salai, causing severe inconvenience to motorists. The overnight rains also inundated almost all low-lying areas even as the posh areas in the metropolis complained of severe waterlogging. Greater Chennai Corporation said waterlogging was reported from 57 localities across the city.

Photos and videos posted by residents on social media showed waterlogging was quite intense in several areas with rainwater entering houses. Anna Salai, G P Road, parts of Royapettah and other areas also reported severe waterlogging. 

The government faced serious questions on its "monsoon preparedness" claims as residents wanted the civic body to explain the reason behind waterlogging if enough measures were taken to keep the canals and drainages clean. 

Data released by the Tamil Nadu State Disaster Management Authority (TNSDMA) said the city received an average rainfall of 97.27 mm till 8 am on Thursday morning. Mylapore, one of the upscale areas in the city, received maximum rainfall recording 178 mm, while Purasaiwalkam recorded 94.40 mm, Ambattur (90 mm), and Ayanavaram recording 53 mm, the lowest.

The thunderstorms began at 3 am on Thursday and continued till about 6 am in various parts of the city, though the rains continued till the later part of the morning. The civic body said it pumped out rainwater from inundated roads and railway subways in just two hours though the rainfall was heavy.

The MeT Department has forecast heavy rains on Friday as well. Besides, Chennai, the neighbouring districts of Chengalpet, Kancheepuram, and Thiruvallur districts. Chennai receives nearly 63 per cent (867.4mm) and Tamil Nadu 48 per cent (438 mm) of their annual rainfall from N-E Monsoon.