A day after heavy rains paralysed normal life in Mumbai, the city is crawling back on the track. With heavy rains reducing to drizzle and gentle shower, train services on all three suburban lines have been restored. However, the authorities in the commercial capital still remain on the edge with forecast of more rains on Saturday.
Mumbai’s life was hit severely on Friday with deep water logging and heavy rains throwing the railway network off-gear. City’s civic body, Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) had even ordered the shutting of schools till the next notice and even the Bombay High Court was shut for a day. Office-goers and regular commuters were hit the most with the cancellation of local trains. Such was the situation that Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis had to visit the BMC control room to monitor the situation.
“Took a stock of the situation at BMCcontrol room, had a discussion with Chief Secretary, BMC Commissioner & top officials,” CM Fadnavis had written on the micro-blogging site Twitter.
Appealing the city residents to “venture out only if required”, the Chief Minister had asked people to “stay away from seafronts during high tide”.
However, early on Saturday, streams of people could be seen at the suburban train stations heading for their officers. But the state government is not taking any chances as they have directed all schools and colleges in the city and neighbouring Thane district to remain close on Saturday as well.
A statement issued by Central and Western Railway said that all suburban services were running as per normal schedule including Harbour line and Trans-Harbour line in Central Railway. But the met department has warned of heavy rains in next 24 hours.
“We have advised people to remain indoors on Saturday,” BMC Commissioner Ajoy Mehta said.
Early on Friday, the BMC was once again caught unprepared to handle the impact of heavy rains with city residents getting stuck on the busiest suburban railway line of CST-Thane section. All three main lines – Central, Harbour and Western, were cancelled after the heavy water logging on the railway tracks. Kurla, Chembur, Tilak Nagar, Andheri, Parel, Lower Parel, Thane, Navi Mumbai and Dombivili were among the worst hit areas.
The heavy rains have also set the social media abuzz with the city residents sharing picture of water logging and part submerged vehicles over the internet and micro-blogging sites. The BMC was criticised as well for what the residents felt “lack of preparation” on the part of city’s civic agency.
However, on its part BMC has claimed of being fully prepared. According to a statement issued by BMC, as many as 120 suction pumps have been pressed into service to drain out water in low-lying areas.
(With inputs from the PTI)