Bengaluru rains: Buildings blocking stormwater flow to be removed on war footing

After a high-level meeting on the waterlogging in Bengaluru, Chief Minister Bommai said Rs 1,500 crore has been sanctioned for new drains in the city, and that works will begin immediately.
Residents being pulled out of their inundated homes by rescue teams in Bengaluru
Residents being pulled out of their inundated homes by rescue teams in Bengaluru
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A day after heavy rains caused lakes to overflow and roads were inundated in Bengaluru, the Karnataka government on Wednesday, August 31, said it has decided to "mercilessly" remove properties blocking rainwater flow. Cabinet members met for a high-level meeting on Wednesday to discuss the inundation, following which it was decided that the properties in question would be removed on a war footing.

Speaking to reporters after the meeting, Revenue Minister R Ashoka said, “Our Municipal Corporation officers have identified 10 bottlenecks. In a day or two, the demolition drive will start. We have told the officers to be merciless while implementing the drive without attending to any phone calls." He said the Disaster Management Act permits "merciless removal" of blocks causing water stagnation.

Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai, meanwhile, said that there was waterlogging in many residential layouts because the developers did not build a proper drain. All such blocks will be removed, he said. “Tomorrow (Thursday), I will visit all those places where the problem occurred and give directions,” the Chief Minister added. He also said that the government has released Rs 1,500 crore for the construction of drains, and that work will begin immediately as the tender process has been completed.

Following heavy rains in the intervening night of August 30 and 31, waterlogging and inundation was reported in several parts of Bengaluru, throwing the city out of gear. Traffic was majorly impacted on the Outer Ring Road, which also connects the city to the tech parks located on the outskirts of Bengaluru. ORR Bellandur near Eco Space saw major flooding as rainwater overflowed from stormwater drains onto the street. Traffic was majorly impacted due to this, with bumper-to-bumper traffic reported in arterial roads as vehicles tried to navigate the waterlogged roads.

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