Panic grips Bengaluru as flash floods hit normal life

Panic grips Bengaluru as flash floods hit normal life

BBMP Mayor Goutham Kumar and BBMP Commissioner BH Anil Kumar taking stock of the situation. (DH Photo)

Panic gripped parts of North and Western Bengaluru in the wee hours of Thursday with flash floods flooding several localities in Dasarahalli, Nagasandra and Chikkabidarakallu limits due to breaching of Doddabidarakallu Lake at around mid-night. More than 300 houses were marooned and over 100 vehicles were submerged in the flash floods.

The lake spread across 40.6 acres area was filled to the brim and heavy rains spanning more than three hours on Wednesday mid-night resulted in heavy inflow into the lake leading to the breaching of one of the bunds. According to sources, at around 1:30 am the lake breached resulting in heavy floods that inundated residential layouts and industrial suburbs located downstream.

More than 300 houses were flooded and over 100 vehicles were submerged in the water. There were also reports that a kid was washed away in the overflowing water. Bhavani Nagar, Chennanayakanahalli, Andanappa Layout, Rukmini Nagar Layouts were flooded with the lake water.

Nearly 300 families affected after Doddabidarakallu Lake breached last night following heavy rains. (DH photo)

A senior engineer of BBMP told DH that the point of the breach was at the location where Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB) had laid a pipeline to draw sewage water for treatment. “As the lake was filled with untreated sewage, BWSSB had laid a pipeline to draw sewage for treatment purpose resulting in the loosening of the bund. The breach has happened at the same point,” a senior official from the Lakes wing of the BBMP told DH.

BBMP Mayor Goutham Kumar and BBMP Commissioner BH Anil Kumar visited the breached site and inspected the situation downstream along with the officials. The BBMP has assured that it will rebuild the bund soon.

Interestingly the lake was recently handed over to the BBMP by the Bengaluru Development Authority. The BBMP had promised to rejuvenate the lake at a cost of Rs 10 cr. Jagannatha Rao, DCF, Lake told DH that they are already filling the breached-up point. “We will fill up the bund with boulders and soil. The boulders will strengthen the retaining bund and the commissioner has assured of granting funds for the work. In a day or two, the bund will be restored to normalcy,” Rao explained.

Vigilant police quick in rescue operation

On receiving information about water logging from Soladevanahalli and Bagalakunte police station limits, Bengaluru City Police Commissioner Bhaskar Rao immediately alerted the quick response team (QRT) and Civil Defence wardens to immediately rush to the spot and take up rescue operations.

As the flooding water inundated more than 300 houses, the entire locality plunged into a pool of darkness. The volunteers swung into action under torch lights and with the help of Fire and Emergency Services personnel began pumping out water. Residents from some of the damaged houses were rescued and taken to the elevated location by the volunteers. Commissioner Bhaskar Rao also visited the flooded area and coordinated with the rescue personnel.