A Garia resident told mayor Firhad Hakim on Friday that an open plot that served as natural drainage has been blocked and the area does not have an alternative drainage system, resulting in repeated waterlogging.
Pijush Kanti Das from Bramhapur told Hakim that a low land in his neighbourhood used to work as a sink when it rained but has been filled up in the last few months. Das’s complaint mirrored what many living on the city’s outskirts experience with several construction projects turning vacant plots into buildings in the last few years, but no associated infrastructure being built.
Hakim received the call during the weekly Talk to Mayor phone-in programme. When he started enquiring with engineers, it was revealed that Das’s neighbourhood does not have a proper underground drainage network.
Das lives in Durgapur for most of the week but his wife and son, a student at the Calcutta Medical College, have to wade through water every day. “My son and wife tell me every day that they have to wade through the water. This is a daily phenomenon. The way from my home to the nearest autorickshaw stand is through a portion of a waterlogged street,” he later told The Telegraph.
“Even after a short drizzle, the stretch gets waterlogged whereas there is hardly any water elsewhere. If it rains heavily, the street remains waterlogged for several hours,” he said.
Das had first complained to Hakim over a month ago. He said the mayor had promised a temporary solution because a permanent one would need time but nothing has been done yet.
“I feel very embarrassed,” Hakim told Das when he called again on Friday.
The mayor asked KMC senior engineers to ensure portable pumps were installed on the road to avoid waterlogging. He also asked them to visit the place on Saturday and find a solution.
“We have laid an underground drainage line close to where the man lives. The lines that will connect the trunk sewer lines have been laid already. The lanes and bylanes have not been done yet,” an engineer told Hakim during the call.
The mayor will conduct a review meeting of drainage projects on Saturday.