Pune: PMC's Pre-Monsoon Work Washed Away By Pre-Monsoon Showers (PHOTOS)

Pune: PMC's Pre-Monsoon Work Washed Away By Pre-Monsoon Showers (PHOTOS)

Despite setting a May 15 deadline to complete 80% of this year's pre-monsoon work, just five days before the target date, two days of rain revealed the inadequate quality of contractor efforts, resulting in severe waterlogging across multiple city areas.

Indu BhagatUpdated: Saturday, May 11, 2024, 04:07 PM IST
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Pune: PMC's Pre-Monsoon Work Washed Away By Pre-Monsoon Showers |

The effectiveness of pre-monsoon work by civic bodies decides the level of trouble in monsoon to the residents. Even in Pune, numerous drains feed into the city's rivers, but waste dumping, especially household waste, causes problems by clogging drains with silt.

To address this, the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) annually cleans all drains, including drainage lines, stormwater drains, chambers, and nullahs before the monsoon. However, recent years have seen delays and incomplete work, leading to waterlogging during heavy rains.

Despite setting a May 15 deadline to complete 80% of this year's pre-monsoon work, just five days before the target date, two days of rain revealed the inadequate quality of contractor efforts, resulting in severe waterlogging across multiple city areas.

Concrete flowed into the nullah

Erandwane resident Prashant Velankar, said, "The drainage line pipe work near Amrut Mitra Mandal on Karve Road recently concluded with the pouring of concrete. However, the concrete flowed into the nullah, creating a large pit."

He added that on behalf of the Erandwane Public Ganeshotsav Mandal, there is a demand for the Municipal Corporation to promptly address the issue and take action against the responsible contractor. This action is deemed necessary due to the perceived danger posed to citizens traveling by car.

Severe waterlogging reported

The two days of rain have brought much respite to Punekars from the scorching heat, but the active monsoon has become a nightmare as drainage channels across the roads are choked up.

Sameer Thakur shared his ordeal, stating, “The entire road starting from Adlabs Chowk to Cybage was waterlogged. There was no place for water to flow. The issue has persisted for years now. The cars moving on this road splash water onto the footpaths, causing inconvenience to pedestrians, as there is no place for the rainwater to flow. Even the slightest of rains cause waterlogging on the entire road.”

Another resident pointed out that this year no pre-rain drain cleaning has been done, and the choked rainwater drain is leading to water clogging on West Avenue, outside Raheja Woods.

PMC: 'We are doing it'

When asked about the pre-monsoon work, Dinkar Gojare, head of the drainage department at PMC, said, “We have already started our cleaning of drainage lines, stormwater drains, drainage chambers, and nullahs before the monsoon season. We have deployed machinery to clean the drainage, and we are also doing lake cleanings to avoid any water-logging or flood-like situation in the city.”

54 trees fall

As many as 54 trees fell across Pune city in the past two days following Thursday's rain showers and stormy weather. According to the fire brigade, they have registered 96 tree-falling incidents in the past two weeks starting from May 1 till May 10. The major incidents were reported in Sahakar Nagar, Karaj, Singhagad Road, Satara Road, and Model colony in Shivajinagar, Kothrud, Karve Nagar, Koregaon Park, Bhavani Peth, Erandwane, FC Road, Tingre Nagar, Pashan Sus Road, Wadgaon Sheri, Senapati Bapat road, and Nana Peth area.

Five cars were damaged after a tree fell on them on DP Road in the Karve Nagar area. Another two cars were damaged as a result of trees falling on them in Tejas Nagar, Kothrud, and near Sevasadan School in Erandwane.

Amit Abhyankar, a resident of Sahkarnagar, told Free Press Journal, “We have reached out to PMC many times asking them to conduct tree audits. We have pointed out many overgrown trees which are likely to fall during rains and strong winds. PMC does the tree trimming just for the namesake, citing various issues like shortage of manpower and equipment. The overgrown trees become too heavy and they lean towards the road, and the imbalance leads to such incidents. Yesterday only two trees in my area fell. We have run pillar to post, but our issues remain the same; it's falling on deaf ears.”

When PMC Garden Department Chief Superintendent, Ashok Ghorpade, was contacted, he refrained from commenting and said, “Tree Authority is decentralised, so every ward officer is a tree officer. So for information, you have to contact them.”

Ratnakar Karde, Assistant Superintendent of the Garden Department said, “A proposal of tree trimming was issued by the garden department before the onset of the monsoon, but I don’t have the data regarding how many trees are being trimmed and whether it has been started or not.”

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