Barmasia bridge collapsed due to Thursday’s rain, snapping the link between Bokaro and Chandankyari block headquarters that is used by over 25,000 people every day. On Friday, a group of Barmasia residents met Bokaro deputy commissioner Sunil Kumar and asked him to speed up repairs. PWD’s apathy has gnawed at the structure over Nahar, a tributary of the Garga, the results of which are only too evident now. Picture by Pankaj Singh
Bokaro, Sept. 7: The body of a Bokaro resident swept away by yesterday’s flash flood surfaced this morning, casting a grim shadow on today’s sunny sky.
In the first known incident of a flood-related casualty, police around 11am recovered the body of Deepak Kumar Mukherjee (42), a contractor for Bokaro steel plant, sending shock waves in the city that struggled to return to normalcy in the absence of rain today.
Mukherjee’s body was found beside Garga river near Sector VI, Bagicha Toli, around 5km from where he was last seen alive yesterday.
Mukherjee, who resided in Bokaro’s Bari Cooperative, is survived by wife Babli, a teacher, and two school-going children.
Yesterday around 10am, he was on his way home on his two-wheeler from his in-laws’ place in Satanpur in Sector XII Bokaro police station area, when he noticed the water level had risen above Joria causeway bridge. By then, he had commuted around 8km and was less than 2km from home.
People warned him not to cross the bridge — one of around a dozen unfenced structures over Garga — as it was already submerged around 2 feet. With no fence, it was impossible to distinguish the bridge from the river. The athletic Mukherjee, who had locally been a well-known soccer player along with brothers Pradeep and Robin, dared to take the plunge and paid for it with his life.
Before people could raise an alarm, he was swept away. Yesterday, his bike was found on Garga’s banks, 400m away from the mishap site, raising hopes that the man had found his way to safety. But that was not to be.
Sector VI police have sent Mukherjee’s body for post-mortem at Chas subdivisional hospital.
Meanwhile, water receded dramatically all across Bokaro steel city today.
But many colonies in Chas township — Kailash Nagar, Bhojpur Colony, Rana Pratap Nagar and others — are still submerged under around 1ft water, which is receding very slowly.
Chas is bearing the brunt of a civic collapse — drains are clogged badly, with residents adding to the mess by throwing garbage anyhow in front of homes. SDO Sanjay Singh admitted they had a lot of work on their hands.
“Municipality workers are trying to drain out the water. Simultaneously, we are also carrying on cleanliness drives to prevent a disease epidemic. We are spraying DDT powder and trying to clean up the muck,” he told The Telegraph.