Hindmata’s fate is sealed, at least for the next two years. The crucial junction will continue to experience heavy flooding for two to three more monsoons, owing to early hurdles encountered in BMC’s project to improve drainage in central Mumbai.
The Brihanmumbai Stormwater Drain (BRIMSTOWAD) project, which was planned to improve drainage in Hindmata with the help of the Britannia Pumping station near Reay Road has run into early stumbling blocks, after an invitation for tenders floated by the BMC for the project in April failed to find any takers.
The BMC is now planning to re-invite the tenders. The floods cause severe traffic hazards at the main junction of Hindmata each monsoon, inviting the ire of commuters. Other areas that will be drained by the Britannia Pumping station include Grant Road, Sleater Road, Mumbai Central, Tardeo, and Byculla.
The Britannia pumping station will help keep Mumbai flood-free along with the seven other stations – two operational pumping stations at Irla and Haji Ali, two that are under construction at Love Grove in Worli and Cleaveland Bunder in Reay Road, and the others at Mahul, Guzderband in Khar and Mogra in Andheri which are yet to be operational. The estimated cost for the entire project is Rs 1,200-1,500 crore.
LS Vhatkar, chief engineer of Storm water Drainage (SWD), said, “We did not get a proper response when we had invited tenders for the Britannia pumping station which would help drain water from low-lying areas of central Mumbai. We would be re-inviting the tenders by October and are expecting to get a positive response from bidders this time and will try and start the work as soon as possible.”
A senior official from SWD department of BMC said, “We are planning to re-invite tenders. Work would take another year-and-a-half to be completed, so we are expecting that the work will be done by monsoon 2014.”