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14 years on, Brimstowad drainage system still unfinished

Experts from the Mumbai Vikas Samiti, a group of retired engineers and experts say that the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) must finish the project on a war footing to prevent the city from coming to a standstill annually.

July 03, 2019 / 12:47 PM IST

The civic authorities may have blamed unprecedented rainfall for disrupting normal life in Mumbai, but experts have blamed an unfinished drainage project for the chaos the city faces annually because of monsoon rains. The Brimstowad Project, which was started after the 2005 deluge killed 1094 people, is aimed at overhauling Mumbai's 19th century drains. It is yet to be completed. The Mumbai civic authorities have stated several reasons for the delay, including encroachment and litigation.

Experts from the Mumbai Vikas Samiti, a group of retired engineers and experts say that the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) must finish the project on a war footing to prevent the city from coming to a standstill annually. Of the 58 works of widening drains and augmenting the drainage planned over two phases, 27 have been completed and rest remain unfinished, according to the BMC flood guideline report 2019.

Civic officials have blamed encroachment along the drains as a major reason for the delay.

The BMC is also yet to procure land for two of the eight pumping stations planned under the project for draining water in Mahul and Mogra, according to civic officials. Officials say unless the Mahul station begins to work, preventing flooding in areas like Sion, Kurla and Matunga is impossible. Citizens had to wade through waist-deep water in these areas even on Monday.