The Kolkata Municipal Corporation has kept its schools and community halls ready to shift people living in crumbling buildings or areas prone to flooding in anticipation of heavy rain this week, officials of the civic body said on Sunday.
The officials said the KMC could also shift people to schools and community halls before the start of the downpour if they sought relocation in advance.
The weather department has warned of an ‘increase in rainfall activity’ in south Bengal on Tuesday and Wednesday under the impact of a cyclonic circulation that is likely to take shape by Monday.
A KMC engineer said the civic body had identified about 3,000 buildings that were dangerous for living and tagged them as ‘dangerous’. Of these, about 100 are in extremely distressed condition.
The KMC’s drainage department has deployed over 30 portable pumps in flood-prone areas such as Mukundapur, Nayabad, Golf Green and the Kidderpore-Bhowanipore belt.
“These 30 pumps are in addition to 350 portable pumps already placed in flood-prone areas,” said an official in the department.
If required, the KMC will also seek help from a 10-member team of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF). The team has boats and tree-cutting machines, which will come in handy rescuing people.
“We are taking additional measures to try and minimise waterlogging and to ensure water drains out fast if there is torrential rain,” said an official of the KMC.
An engineer of the drainage department said seven portable pumps had been deployed in Ward 109, which includes Nayabad, New Garia and Mukundapur on the south-eastern fringes. One pump has been installed in Golf Green and 25 in the Kidderpore-Bhowanipore belt.
“The portable pumps are run to drain out water from areas that lack a good drainage system. The water from such areas is pumped out and discharged into areas that have good drainage,” the engineer said.
The Kolkata police have instructed officers of the Unified Command Centre in Lalbazar as well as the quick response teams to be on high alert till September 29.
Twenty-two disaster management teams with members from the armed police and fire and emergency services have been kept ready for areas under Bhowanipore, Kalighat, Park Street, New Market and a few other police stations.
Senior officers said the team members had been told that since heavy rain was likely on September 28 and 29, no one should leave their station of duty unless directed by the command centre. The deputy commissioners of police of all divisions have been asked to ensure that the disaster management personnel get adequate logistic support.