Four people drowned in open nullahs in the eastern suburbs – three in Mulund and one in Bhandup – as moderate to heavy rains continued to lash the city for a second straight day.
The police said Arbaaz Hasaan Ansari, 12, and Altaf Irfan Sayyad, 15, from Amar Nagar in Mulund (West) drowned playing in the rain in the early hours of Saturday. An officer from Mulund police station said, “The two boys slipped and fell into a nullah. Ansari was lucky as he got tangled in a telephone wire. He was rescued, but Sayyad drowned.”
Elsewhere in Mulund, Akhil Ismaeel Shaikh, 30, died after falling into a nullah near Rallyphone Company on Saturday afternoon. He was shepherding his goats and failed to spot the drain. He was taken to Mulund hospital, where he was declared dead at 2.25pm.
In Bhandup, a 70-year-old woman died after falling into an open nullah, but the police are yet to find her body. The incident took place at Pratap Nagar, when the woman had gone to pay her electricity bills on Saturday afternoon. An officer from Bhandup police station said the woman has been identified as Vasant Balerno, a resident of Jagdale chawl in Hanuman Nagar, Bhandup.
Local trains were also delayed by the rain on Saturday. Western Railway trains ran up to 15 minutes late while those on the Central Railway were 30 to 40 minutes behind schedule. A track facture was reported near Sion but it did not disrupt train schedules. Eight collapsed walls and 30 fallen trees were also reported through the day.
The rains also caused flooding across the city, and the BMC evacuated people from 36 hutments in Dahisar, Ghatkopar and Kurla. One complaint about flooding was lodged in south Mumbai, five were registered in the western suburbs and four in the eastern suburbs.
As the Indian Meteorological Department has warned of heavy rainfall in Greater Mumbai in the next 48 hours, BMC chief Ajoy Mehta ordered all civic officials – whether on leave or not – to report to work on Sunday.
And while the city has already received enough rainfall to cause flooding and delay trains, catchment area of the seven lakes that provide water to the city are yet to receive heavy rainfall. This means the 20% water cut, in force since last August, will continue for some time.
“The water levels in the seven lakes are still lower than they were last year. The catchment areas need at least seven days of rainfall for the water levels to rise,” said deputy municipal commissioner Sudhir Nayak. The water amount of water in all seven lakes is 9,430.4 crore litres, more than 20,000 crore litres less than this time last year.