E Sreedharan, popular known as ‘Metro Man’ for successfully helming various metro projects including the Delhi Metro and Cochin Metro Rail Ltd. or CMRL project stated that the main reason for the recent floods in Kerala was bad weather forecasting.
In an interview given to media persons at Thiroor, Sreedharan said, “No weather forecasts are accurate. This time, when rains were predicted nobody believed it and the dams were all kept full. If the forecasts are accurate and it was known that there would be rains for the next 15 days, the dams could have been opened earlier.”
He further added, "The real villain according to me was bad weather forecasting, then dam management. There is also the problem of encroachments," he added.
The state government has been blamed for delay in taking prompt action to mitigate floods by opening the dams well in advance. Last week, opposition leader Ramesh Chennithala in a press meet called the floods a ‘man made disaster’ and held the government responsible for it, citing mismanagement in opening of the dams. He even demanded a judicial probe and prosecution of those responsible for the decisions. These allegations were however denied by Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan.
Meanwhile, on the criticism levelled against the centre for offering inadequate monetary aid to Kerala and for rejecting foreign aid, Sreedharan added that Rs 700 crore or even Rs 7000 crore was not a huge deal to the centre with its Rs 12 lakh crore budget.
Kerala witnessed the worst floods in a century last week with a death toll of 322 people and damages to the tune of 19,000 crores recorded in the State. Relief and rehabilitation work in being undertaken with several victims earlier housed in relief camps going back home this week.