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How pumping stations helped

india Updated: Jun 17, 2010 02:34 IST
Sujit Mahamulkar

On Wednesday, when several parts of the city were submerged, a few normally flood-prone spots — such as Nana Chowk, Juhu Vile Parle Development (JVPD) Scheme, Irla and Milan Subway — were not inundated, courtesy the two new pumping stations made operational from this year.

The two pumping stations, at Irla and Haji Ali respectively, are meant to service the Western suburbs and South Mumbai.

Residents of south-central areas, such as Hindmata and Parel, however, had to wade through floodwater that was one foot deep.

The construction of pumping stations at Cleave Land Bunder and Love Grove is yet to begin.

Once these two pumping stations are operational, areas like Hindmata, Worli, Prabhadevi, Parel, Dadar TT, and Matunga which flooded even on Wednesday — will get relief. But till then, these areas are likely to flood every time it rains hard.

On Wednesday, Hindmata was flooded for more than three hours, leading to severe traffic disruptions.

Pumping stations flush out floodwater from low-lying areas even during high tide. The sluice gates at the outfalls prevent seawater from rushing into the drains and blocking floodwater from flowing out.

“Near Milan Subway, the floodwater used to take five to six hours to recede. However, this year, there was no flooding at this vulnerable spot, thanks to the Irla pumping station,” said an official of the Stormwater Drains Department on condition of anonymity as he is not authorised to speak to the press.

Aseem Gupta, additional municipal commissioner, Stormwater Drains Department, said: “Both pumping stations are functioning well and are giving the expected results.”

The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) planned to start four pumping stations in 2010, but work at Cleave Land Bunder and Love Grove, near Worli, could not begin because of encroachment on the land earmarked for them, said an officer of the Stormwater Drains Department.