A day after at least 30 people died and five others were injured in rain-related incidents as incessant heavy downpour overnight during a major thunderstorm pummeled Mumbai, BJP MLA Ashish Shelar urged CM Uddhav Thackeray to call a meeting of representatives, experts to deal with 'future warning'.
"This was the first time when floodwater gushed in Bhandup Water Treatment Plant. The Mithi river was flooded when there was no high tide. The water of the Mithi river did not recede even when there was low tide. I have been working as a representative for the last 25 years, but this has never happened in 25 years. So this is a sign of future danger for Mumbai, isn't it?" BJP leader Ashish Shelar said that there is an urgent need to think about this.
"Therefore, the Chief Minister should immediately convene a meeting of corporators, MLAs, MPs, municipal officials and experts in this field to take stock of the situation," he added.
At least 30 people died and five others were injured in rain-related incidents as incessant heavy downpour overnight during a major thunderstorm pummeled Mumbai, causing severe water-logging and traffic disruptions in the financial capital on Sunday, officials said.
The Western Railway and Central Railway briefly suspended suburban train services in Mumbai after the heavy rains, and many long-distance trains were terminated or regulated at various stations, officials said.
In the Mahul area in suburban Chembur, 19 people died when a compound wall came crashing down on some houses located on a hillock following a landslide, a Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) PRO said on Sunday night. The retaining wall of the Bharatnagar locality collapsed at 1 am. Five people were injured and taken to nearby Rajawadi hospital, as per the BMC.
A civic activist said this is among the 257 hutments that have come upon hillocks in the city. In the last 29 years, 290 people in such localities have been killed in landslides and collapses during monsoon, he added.
In another incident, ten hutment-dwellers died as six shanties collapsed after a landslide in suburban Vikhroli at 2.30 am. One person was injured in the incident, the BMC said, adding he was discharged after treatment.
In suburban Bhandup, a 16-year-old boy died after a forest department compound wall collapsed, an official said.
Mumbai recorded over 250 mm of rain in just three hours (between midnight and 3 am), touching 305 mm by 7 am on Sunday, a meteorologist said.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed anguish at the loss of lives caused by wall collapse incidents in Mumbai.
His office also announced Rs two lakh each for the next of kin of the deceased from the Prime Minister's National Relief Fund. A sum of Rs 50,000 would be given to the injured.
"Saddened by the loss of lives due to wall collapses in Chembur and Vikhroli in Mumbai. In this hour of grief, my thoughts are with the bereaved families. Praying that those who are injured have a speedy recovery," Modi said President Ram Nath Kovind also expressed grief over the rain-related deaths in Mumbai.
CM Thackeray expressed grief over the loss of lives and announced an ex-gratia of Rs 5 lakh for the kin of each of the victims.
A viral video showed a two-wheeler being dragged in water in an inundated street in the Chinchpokli area.
The BMC said 43 pumps in six stormwater pumping stations of the civic body were operating continuously to discharge rainwater into the sea and had pumped out 442 crore litre water till evening.
Suburban train services in Mumbai were suspended due to waterlogging on the tracks due to the overnight heavy downpour, railway officials said, adding the services were resumed in the morning.
Before the pandemic, both the Central Railway and Western Railway used to ferry over 75 lakh commuters a day in over 3,000 suburban train services, which are now operated only for emergency services staff and government employees.
The rain fury reminded some Mumbaikars of the 24-hour rainfall figure of 944 mm on July 26, 2005.
(With inputs from agencies)