Rainfall of 100.8mm drowns Gurugram, key roads waterlogged, gridlocked
Rainfall of about 100.8mm, between 1am and 5.30pm Wednesday, left most areas of the city heavily inundated, with the Narsinghpur stretch on the Delhi-Gurgaon Expressway and areas below the Iffco Chowk Metro station remaining waterlogged till late evening.
According to the weather department officials, the city started receiving rain a little after midnight and it continued till noon on Wednesday, post which it fizzled to a drizzle till evening.
Such was the extent of waterlogging across the city that the traffic police issued alerts over social media cautioning commuters about the high amount of accumulated rainwater on Sheetla Mata Road, CH Bakhtawar Singh Road, Iffco Chowk, sector 21/22 crossing, near Kherki Daula toll, Nathupur, Bilaspur Chowk, Signature Tower, Sector 12 Chowk, Iffco Chowk, near Mayfield Gardens traffic signal, near Good Earth Mall, below Guru Dronacharya Metro station, Mini Secretariat, Hamilton Court Road, Basai Road, Z-chowk near Huda City Centre, Narsinghpur, and Ram Chowk. Commuters and motorists were advised to avoid these stretches and plan their travel accordingly.
The worst affected stretch was the service lanes of the Delhi-Gurgaon Expressway, between Khandsa and Kherki Daula toll.
The service lanes towards Manesar were heavily inundated and commuters had to rely on the main carriageway, but even there, the situation was not better — two lanes of the main carriageway were also underwater, traffic officials said.
Pedestrians could be seen wading their way through the knee-deep water on the stretch. Two-wheeler riders and cyclists were unable to spot the potholes and several of them lost their balance and fell into the murky water.
With the service completely inundated and only the main carriageway of the expressway (NH-48) carrying traffic, the 3km stretch from Khandsa to Kherki Daula also witnessed severe congestion.
“It took me over 20 minutes to cross the stretch. The service lanes were inaccessible and a few lanes of the main carriageway were also heavily waterlogged. Traffic police officials diverted traffic through the unaffected parts and cleared vehicles from the limited road space available,” said Kuldeep Rana, a resident of Sector 49.
Traffic police officials said the Narsinghpur stretch along with Signature Towers, and Basai Chowk were the worst hit in terms of traffic snarls.
“Over 1,100 traffic police officials were deputed on ground to manage traffic and other waterlogging related issues. The three stretches were the worst affected areas with regard to traffic movement. We deployed additional staff to divert vehicles and assist the stranded, while cranes were also placed at these spots to tow away broken down vehicles,” said Ravinder Singh Tomar, DCP, Gurugram traffic police.
Tomar said at Signature Towers, the stretches below the flyover were inundated and that triggered snarls while at Basai Chowk, ongoing construction work, coupled with rain, led to jams. Tomar, however, said no underpass in the city had to be shut this time on account of waterlogging.
Even arterial stretches such as Iffco Chowk and Hamilton Court Road did not fare any better.
At Hamilton Court Road, opposite Galleria Market, such was the extent of waterlogging that two vehicles were submerged and had to be towed away with the help of cranes.The stretch leading towards the camera museum was unserviceable. Officials of the Municipal Corporation of Gurugram (MCG) could be seen using motor pumps to channel rainwater towards the nearest drainage outlet.
“Such was the extent of waterlogging on the Hamilton Court Road that I could not turn into Sushant Lok-1 and had to take a 3km detour to access it from the MG Road side,” said Ravish Singh, a resident of Sushant Lok-1.
Previously, heavy rainfall was recorded in the city on August 19 and 20 of 2020, when over 196mm of rainfall inundated the seven-kilometre Golf Course Road, with rainwater accumulation as high as 0.5 metres above the surface level at several points.
On July 28, 2016, Gurugram received just 55mm of rain. While that was not much when compared to other rain days — like the 19th of July when the city received 185mm of rain — it was enough to bring Gurugram to its knees; enough to overwhelm a skeletal drainage network; enough to cause the infamous “Gurujam” when commuters were stuck on the Delhi-Gurgaon Expressway for nearly two days; enough to flood all arterial roads, enough to inundate houses, and enough to wash away the moniker of “Millennium City”.
According to the India Meteorological Department (IMD) media bulletin, Gurugram recorded a maximum temperature of 26.2 degrees Celsius (°C), eight degrees below normal, and a minimum of 23°C, two degrees below normal on Wednesday.
According to the IMD’s seven-day forecast, the city is expected to have spells of rain till Saturday and the weather is expected to clear on Sunday.
Pardeep Kumar, chief engineer, Gurugram Metropolitan Development Authority, said barring the Narsinghpur and Iffco Chowk areas, rainwater was cleared from most parts of the city by 4pm.
“The city received rainfall in three digits. Despite that, waterlogging in most areas was managed to a significant extent. In most parts, rainwater was cleared by 3pm while in low-lying areas, it was cleared by 4pm. At Narsinghpur and Iffco Chowk, rainwater was cleared by 6pm,” said Kumar.
Kumar attributed the extensive waterlogging at Iffco Chowk to an incomplete drainage project of the GMDA, which he said will be completed post-monsoon. At Narsinghpur, he said the intensity of rain was far more than in other parts of the city, due to which there was extensive waterlogging.