Palam Vihar residents want stormwater drain repaired on priority
Residents of Palam Vihar blamed the local government bodies for severe waterlogging in the colony earlier this week, alleging that water stagnated on roads as the main stormwater drain in the area was not repaired or cleaned.
They said that officials were repeatedly asked to fix the Leg One (L-1) stormwater drain and cover it across its one-kilometre trajectory in the area, failure to undertake which led to the flooding of arterial and main roads in the colony.
The residents’ welfare association (RWA) of the E and F blocks said that the stormwater drain has collapsed at many spots in the colony and that the surface of the drain is also giving way at several points, leading to concerns of groundwater contamination. “The drain is damaged at several places and we have repeatedly taken up the matter with the Gurugram Metropolitan Development Authority (GMDA). Due to the lack of cleaning and silting, the water carrying capacity has reduced considerably and it caused heavy waterlogging on Monday. Water was stagnating up to a height of two feet on internal roads, “ said Colonel (retd) Davinder Behl, the RWA president.
Officials of the GMDA said that tenders for the stormwater drain were already issued but the process was delayed after a resident approached the National Green Tribunal (NGT) over environmental issues that may arise from the project.
Pradeep Kumar, the chief engineer of GMDA, said, “Palam Vihar residents have approached us and shared their problems, after which it was decided that a fresh tender should be prepared for carrying out this work. A detailed tender is in the final stages at NIT Kurukshetra and we will soon allot it and get the work started. The concerns of the residents, environmental and others, would be addressed through this work.”
Dharmvir Malik, the executive engineer of the Municipal Corporation of Gurugram (MCG), said that the internal drains of the sector have been cleaned but have limited capacity. “Once the main stormwater drain becomes fully functional, this problem will go away,” he said.
Residents also said that residential areas and industrial units located upstream from them were discharging sewage into the drain. “The sewage in the drain causes the release of ammonia gas, which causes foul smell. The stagnant water also leads to mosquito breeding and makes life difficult for residents,” said Amar Meena, the general secretary of the RWA.
Residents said that the drain should be cleaned at the earliest and relaid so that stormwater can flow freely. “For the last three days, there has been no electricity in our side of the Vyapar Kendra market because of flooding of the basement. The electricity panels are submerged in water,” said Karamvir Singh, a shop owner in Vyapar Kendra.
Kumar also said that to prevent flooding and waterlogging, the GMDA would immediately deploy personnel and machinery to clean the drain. “It should be noted that waterlogging took place due to record rainfall on Monday, but it cleared by late evening. The systems put in place worked effectively,” he said.