People living near the Mithi river at Mahim Causeway won’t have to face monsoon flooding this year, thanks to the commencement of construction of a retaining wall on a 450-metre stretch of the river near the Causeway.
The Bombay high court gave permission to the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) on March 12 to construct the wall in the mangroves along the river.
According to the MMRDA, the construction of the 9 to ten metre-high wall will begin on Thursday and will be completed by the end of May, ensuring flooding does not occur in nearby slums and the police staff colony in Mahim during monsoon.
The authority received an approval from the Union ministry of environment and forest (MoEF) in December, but it was mandated that a final approval be sought from the high court.
Devendra Gajbhiye, superintending engineer, MMRDA, said, “Of the 1.2-km stretch of the river from Dharavi to Mahim Causeway, we have decided to construct a retaining wall along 450 metres near the Causeway.”
MMRDA is widening and deepening a 5.83-km stretch of the Mithi River, along with the 1.8-km Vakola nala, for which it is supposed to construct a 8.5-km retaining wall on one or both sides of the river, depending on the probability of flooding and re-encroachment.
The MMRDA said it has constructed a 6.7 km-long wall so far, but is yet to build a 1.8 km-long wall due to unfinished rehabilitation of slum dwellers living along the river. “Once the rehabilitation of residents of Walmiki Nagar, Parikh Khadi, Kapadia Nagar and Taximen colony is completed, we will construct a retaining wall on the remaining stretches,” said Gajbhiye.