Few hours of rainfall submerges city, again

Once again, a few hours of rainfall submerged several areas of summer capital Srinagar on Thursday, exposing the city’s poor drainage system and Srinagar Municipal Corporation’s failure to find a permanent solution to the problem. 

The downpour led to massive water-logging. In many parts of the city including commercial hub Lal Chowk the rain water entered shops and other commercial setups, invoking resentment among traders.

Most of the city markets, roads and localities remained submerged for hours while as commuters and locals had to wade through water to reach respective destinations.

People living in different areas of the city suffered owing to the water-logging and pedestrians had either to change the routes or wade through knee deep water.

Some of the major junctions across city also got deluged, resulting in traffic snarls since morning.

The Srinagar Municipal Corporation (SMC) Commissioner Khurshid Sanie said they have pressed men and machinery into service to dewater the affected areas.

The Ghanta Ghar (Clock Tower) remained deluged for more than two hours and busy markets at Court Road and Palladium Gali remained inaccessible to shoppers.

“The entire drainage network had got blocked at Palladium Gali which led to the situation, but men and machinery were pressed into service to clear the area,” said the Commissioner.

He said that new drainage network constructed from Post Office to Regal Chowk will be made functional by middle of this month.

“That will ease the problem,” he said while responding to a query, adding that heavy precipitation led to overflow of rain water from drains.

Latief Ahmad, a restaurant owner at Ghanta Ghar said each time there is a rainfall the situation worsens, adding he had complained about the frequent water-logging with the Governor’s grievance cell.

“This situation is leading to business losses. The entire city market turns into a cesspool even if there is a passing drizzle,” he said.

He added that authorities must reconstruct effective drainage system as permanent solution to the problem.

“When will the SMC wake up from slumber to find permanent solution to the problem?” asked another shopkeeper.