After a series of inspection the GHMC identifies the reasons for the water inundation on Punjagutta roads. During rainfall in Hyderabad, traffic goes haywire and motorists spend hours on roads struck in traffic.
In the recent rainfall, one the worst affected roads was the Punjagutta road. The situation was so bad that the road remained water logged for the next two days affecting the traffic.
Rainwater started overflowing from the drains and got accumulated on the roads, throwing traffic out of gear.
Scores of patients visiting the NIMS hospital and commuters travelling to Punjagutta from Khairtabad, including the traffic police had a harrowing experience.
Pressured by the traffic police to probe the reasons for the water inundation and ease their job, the GHMC found that the water accumulation on the roads happened because of the erstwhile 11-acre pond, now being converted into a 5-acre pond.
The erstwhile Anugu Kunta pond was converted into a park with canteen, parking space and a space for walking and jogging in 2002. The park was named after former Chief Minister of United Andhra Pradesh Jalagam Vengal Rao.
Authorities had decreased the size of the pond, thereby diminishing its water holding capacity. The pond now has become an open drainage because of sewage water being let into the pond.
A local auto-driver, K Prasad said that the pond being shrunk is the cause of the all the traffic problems in the area. “It is common for the GHMC workers to come and drain out the water on the roads after the rainfall. However if it continues raining the next day the problem surfaces again. They don’t have a long-term solution for this,” he said.
Punjagutta traffic police, Station House Officer Santosh Kiran complained that the GHMC, despite repeated complaints to resolve the issue immediately, have been acting lethargically.
He said that the traffic in the Punjagutta road was worst affected for the next two days, straining the department. “The water near Model house got accumulated, due to overflowing drains. The municipal authorities couldn’t drain out the water immediately. We made several complaints in the past too,” he lamented.
Speaking to TNM, GHMC Deputy Commissioner, Srinivas admitted that the crisis is due to the water body’s space being decreased. He said that the GHMC has now deputed a team at the Model house area, who would drain out the water immediately, if it rains. “The water overflowing because of the narrow sewerage lines, we are planning to replace them with huge pipelines, this is a long-term plan. But for now, we are regularly draining out the sewerage water coming from the pond, so that it withhold rainfall water of up to 3 cm. A quick response team have also been kept on standby to handle the crisis,” he said.
When asked if they have any plans to the bring back the past glory of the pond by increasing its size, he said, “We don’t have any such plans for now.”
Urban policy expert Narasimha Reddy said that the water inundation is just because of the narrow sewerage lines, but also because of the Metro constructions, which is totally un-engineered. “Now we cant make changes to what mistake has been done already, better we upgrade the sewer lines and make multiples channels for rain water, so that the water doesn’t overflow,” he said.