Residents of Neelasandra and the adjoining Lakshman Rao Nagar (L R Nagar) and Anepalya here faced their worst nightmare when rainwater, mixed with sewage, gushed into their homes in the early hours of Tuesday.
As rain pounded the City, over 300 houses at some low-lying areas were inundated with up to six feet of water. Residents said that the water entered their houses between 3.30 am and 4 am. The dirty water had spilt out of a stormwater drain (SWD) located on South Cross Road, R K Garden. The SWD connects all the above three areas.
Shaheen Taj, a homemaker from Neelasandra, said, “My furniture and kitchen ingredients, including two bags of rice, have gone down the drain. Every time it rains, the roads are flooded. But this is the first time the damage has occurred at a large scale.” She said that neither the Shanthinagar MLA, N A Harris, nor the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) was bothered about the problem.
Residents were seen pumping water out of their homes with the help of some BBMP workers who were deployed by the civic agency. The floods also affected the educational institutions located in these three areas.
The management of Bright High School, R K Garden, declared a holiday for students and postponed exams scheduled for Tuesday. “The stormwater drain cannot handle excess water. So, when there was a downpour on Monday, rainwater got mixed with the sewage and spilt out of the drain onto the streets, flooding the houses.
Last year, the BBMP had brought down a bridge connecting L R Nagar, Neelasandra and Anepalya to build a new one and also to implement works such as de-silting of drains and building a retaining wall. But the work is going at a snail’s place,” said Altaf Khan, a resident of L R Nagar. Residents say the drain, carrying water from KR Market, Wilson Garden and the surrounding areas, stretches till Bellandur.
Mayor N Shanthakumari inspected the streets on Tuesday. She instructed the Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB) to provide clean drinking water to the residents as sewage had polluted the Cauvery water. The mayor also visited other rain-affected areas such as Dasarahalli, Bhuvaneshwarinagar and Mathikere. Neelasandra corporator Lokesh Nayak said that the SWD was being remodelled and it would be completed within six months.
“The project includes construction of a retaining wall of the drain from Hosur Road to Ejipura, de-silting, building of bridge, piping and other related works.
Once all the above works are completed, there will no problems,” he told Deccan Herald. The corporator further said that the Revenue Department would conduct a survey and prepare a list of beneficiaries with details on the extent of loss incurred by the residents.
“The list will be submitted to the BBMP Commissioner, M Lakshminarayana, and residents will be given compensation,” Nayak said.