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Water logging in metro cities: Who is responsible?

Water logging in metro cities: Who is responsible?

– by Arti Chaudhary

Monsoon, a sign of happiness or a headache? Whenever this season arrives it brings greenery, relief from the scorching heat, relaxation, and a box full of questions that unleashes the truth of the government’s false promises.

During monsoon, waterlogged roads, traffic jams, potholes, etc. are now becoming inevitable like lightning and thunder. Every year, metro cities face this worst side of monsoon, where concreted surfaces fail to absorb stormy water that causes waterlogging on the roads. Unlike urban areas, soft earth and trees play a vital role in absorbing every single drop of water in the woodlands.

Even after building huge infrastructure like – skyscrapers, parks, and flyovers, the question still remains the same, who is responsible for waterlogging in the cities?

Primarily a drainage system is built to keep rainwater off the roads but today due to lack of attention of civic bodies, drains are getting clogged as they are not in proper shape. Disposal of kitchen and home waste, fallen dried leaves, debris, broken garbage collection, plastic, and other garbage directly into the drains is the major factor of drain clogging that further results in water logging on roads.

Keeping the drains clean and maintaining proper garbage disposal is one of the key responsibilities of the municipality of any city. But as usual, they fail to perform these indispensable tasks every single year. Apart from this, solid wastes caused due to under-construction projects and plastic wastes are also causing severe damage to the drainage system.

In many cases, waste flowing through drainage pops out, which results in a stinky odor on the streets. This is very common in cities near the coastline as during rain and high tide water enter back into the cities through the drains.

Earlier, people used to blame India’s poor rain forecasting system but now with the updated weather technology the blame now lies on the shoulders of the municipal corporations for drainage system failure.

So, now we all can figure out that if 30% of problems are happening due to heavy rain then the rest 70% is due to human negligence. This adversely affects the health of both the environment and the city. Due to massive construction and endless development, water-absorbing sectors like – forests, fields, wetlands, and mangroves are diminishing.

After identifying the cause and the reason behind the waterlogging, now the question is, what can be done for the betterment of life out there in cities?

As we all know that the municipality, as usual, will comfortably ignore the situation but we can at least give our contribution to better up the situation.  We can do it by restricting ourselves and others from disposing of waste into drains, especially plastics, making optimal use of dustbins, and following the government’s waste disposal system respectively. It won’t take much, I bet!

Then there comes the tree plantation which is the best and the oldest method to control things like floods and waterlogging. Strategically planting trees in particular areas will be beneficial for all.

The change can only be seen when the state government will start giving priority to flood management projects. A few urban communities have started doing this, however, we still have a long way to go.


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