The Mithi river in Bandra East. Locals have claimed that this might have been the first time BKC got flooded during monsoons. Pic/Pradeep Dhivar
The Mithi river in Bandra East. Locals have claimed that this might have been the first time BKC got flooded during monsoons. Pic/Pradeep Dhivar

The Metro may ultimately add to the infrastructure that is supposed to better transport in Mumbai, but it seems that this will happen at the cost of locals in Bandra East and Bandra-Kurla Complex. As of now for them, the Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation's (MMRCL) Metro-3 (Colaba-Bandra-Seepz) has proved to be a bane. mid-day has learnt that the construction of the proposed BKC Metro station for it has led to the clogging of an important stormwater outfall in the locality.

The accumulated water due to the rains in the commercial district did not recede for more than 12 hours. Pic/Nimesh Dave
The accumulated water due to the rains in the commercial district did not recede for more than 12 hours. Pic/Nimesh Dave

On Tuesday, after the heavy rains, Bandra-Kurla Complex (BKC) had seen unprecedented waterlogging. Locals have claimed that this might have been the first time that BKC got flooded, and also that the water did not recede for more than 12 hours.

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Choked outfall
According to officials from the Stormwater Drain (SWD) department, just before the monsoon started, the civic body communicated with MMRCL and told them about the damage to the outfall. The outfall was carrying drain water from areas like Ganesh Nagar, Dnyaneshwar Marg, Bharat Nagar, Dharmadhikari Road and discharging it in the Vakola Nullah.

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An official said, "The MMRCL contractor had choked the outfall completely by dumping construction waste. After we had raised this with MMRCL officials, they had promised to make an alternative arrangement of laying a pipeline to smoothen the discharge of stormwater in Vakola Nullah. Though the contractor has started the work, the pipeline has not been laid yet."

"This led to flooding in the area and the water was receding slowly. On Wednesday, some civic officials visited the site and told MMRCL to clear the outfall. They brought machines to clear it, after which water started receding fast," the official added.

Who will bell the cat?
Fearing repercussions since the Metro work is headed by Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, no BMC officials were willing to come on record about the incident.

mid-day had reported first (on June 12) that BMC had told MMRCL its Metro-3 work could cause flooding. Apart from BKC, Worli Naka had seen unprecedented waterlogging due to Metro work barricading, and damage to roadside drains.

When asked about the flooding by Metro work, municipal commissioner Ajoy Mehta had also chosen not to say anything about the negligence by the Metro authority. "BMC and MMRCL are working together and coordinating with each other for any issues related to flooding," said Mehta in a press conference at the BMC head office at CST.

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BMC officials briefed Yuva Sena chief Aaditya Thackeray about this and then he tweeted, "Always here to help. Last night's waterlogging in our area was because BKC Metro work had its debris dumped blocking BMC drainage outlet."

The other side
Managing Director of MMRCL Ashwini Bhide said, "All necessary precautions were taken as per the advice given by MCGM after conducting joint pre-monsoon site inspections of all the construction sites of Metro-3. A detailed advisory is issued by MMRCL to its contractors and project teams, which is being scrupulously followed. In the event of extremely heavy rainfall if any additional measures are required to be taken, MMRC is committed to take them under MCGM's guidance."


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