The Telegraph
Wednesday , May 28 , 2014
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Monsoon trailer shows civic chinks

- Three days of showers raises questions on civic preparedeness to avoid seasonal maladies

The rainfall, which started on Sunday night, intensified on Monday and continued till Tuesday morning.

A result of a deep depression in Bay of Bengal, the rain is giving a feel of southwest monsoon in Bihar, days ahead of its official onset.

However, the pleasant weather has exposed the ill-preparedness of the authorities to deal with the upcoming monsoon.

The civic body does not have any estimate with regard to capacity of rainwater drainage nor is there any separate storm water drainage network in the city.

However, technical experts in Patna Municipal Corporation said it could drain out water from the streets in 24 hours if it rains up to 65mm between 10pm and 2am.

However, it would take around 48 hours to drain out the same amount of water if it rains between 2am and 10am. It would take more than 48 hours if it rains above 65mm in a day.


While monsoon is around a fortnight away from Bihar, weathermen said the city would continue to receive light to moderate rain till the end of this week.

“The rainfall in Bihar over the past 48 hours was comparatively more than what we had expected because the deep depression over Bay of Bengal entered the landmass from central Odisha contrary to the expected south Odisha entry,” said Ashish Sen, the director of India Meteorological Department, Patna.

“The depression is weakening, as a result, the rainfall would be comparatively less in Bihar on Wednesday and Thursday but the skies would remain partly cloudy. However, the remaining moisture and approaching monsoon waves are again expected to cause rainfall in eastern India, including Bihar, Bengal, Odisha and Jharkhand from Friday and it would continue over the next three days,” Sen added.

A checklist of things on how to tide over monsoon maladies and how much the civic body is prepared



What’s required

Repair damaged roads

Repair water and sewer lines that require roads to be dug up in advance

Prepare for emergency repairs by stocking up on bitumen and mastic asphalt

What has been done

Repair and patchwork on Rajiv Nagar Road, Fraser Road, Bank Road, Gandhi Maidan-Rajapur Pul road, Sinha Library Road and Hardinge Road

Ground reality

Owing to ongoing flyover construction works, Exhibition Road, Station Road, Raja Bazaar and stretch of Bailey Road have been dug up. Roads in areas like Phulwarishariff Main Road, Ashiana Nagar, Rajwanshi Nagar, Anandpuri, Shivpuri, Kidwaipuri, Ashok Rajpath, Kankerbagh and Rajendra Nagar are among many others crying for repair



What’s required

Identify manholes and catchpits in the waterlogging-prone areas that need to be opened in the event of heavy rain

Identify open manholes and catchpits and cover them

Clean the edges of jammed manhole lids

Apply visible markers around the covers so that they can be bypassed

What has been done

PMC records state around 70 per cent of the pre-monsoon work that includes covering of 25,570 manholes, 17,750 catchpits have been completed till date.

Consolidated funds to the tune of Rs 2.68 crore were sanctioned for monsoon preparedness works, including repair of manhole/catchpit and drainage cleaning for the current fiscal

Ground reality

Open manholes and catchpits can be found on Kanti Factory Road, Lohanipur Road, Munnachak, Kadamkuan, Daldali Road, Samanpura Road and Punaichak

Lack of markers has made manholes hard to spot

With the locks broken, several iron lids have been stolen



What’s required

Patna is provided with a network of 535 drains, including six big, 14 medium and 514 small drains. The water from these drains goes through four sewage treatment plants in Beur, Pahari, Karmalichak and Saidpur. The civic body was required to dredge all drains criss-crossing the city so that hyacinth and garbage did not impede the flow of water during heavy rain

What has been done

PMC commissioner Kuldip Narayan said work on Kurji, Serpentine, Bakarganj and Punaichak drains (big) has been almost completed, while work on Saidpur and Mandiri drains are still going on. Sources in the civic body said the second round of drainage cleaning work is expected to start from June 10

Ground reality

Garbage removed from Saidpur has been put up at Mussalahpur Chowk, making it almost impossible for residents to walk through it. Similar is the condition on Rajiv Nagar Road. A solitary shower could push the dredged waste back into the canal. Most medium- and small-sized drains, including those in waterlogged-prone Kankerbagh area such as Bhootnath Road, Lohanipur and Kanti Factory Road among others have not been cleaned till now.



What’s required

Garbage should be collected from each door and from the public bins twice a day. Sufficient number of public bins should be evenly distributed across the city

What has been done

Civic body claims it collects garbage from main roads between 6am and 2pm daily. PMC commissioner Narayan said the bidding process for door-to-door garbage collection is on

Ground reality

Garbage is found littered almost across the city. The worst condition is on Kurji-Digha road.



What’s required

Every ward should be fumigated for at least two hours everyday according to sanitation norms.

Accordingly, every ward should have one fogging machine.

What has been done

PMC has 68 fogging machines, of which 59 hand-held ones were procured last year.

Ground reality

The fumigation process had improved last year after the civic body had purchased fogging machines in bulk. However, PMC commissioner Narayan said 10 fogging machines have developed snags and they would be sent for repairs.



What’s required

Equip all ward health units with enough medicines and testing kits for vector- and water-borne diseases. Launch a drive to flush out accumulated water.

What has been done

Primary health centres, sadar hospitals, medical colleges and private hospitals have been asked to stock up paracetamol and ORS for dengue and diarrhoea patients.

Ground reality

Touchwood! There has not been an outbreak of any disease yet.

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