President, All India Consumers Council & SNS, Uttarakhand
Towns getting flooded on heavy rains has become quite common all over the country and is causing lot of damage to life and property. It needs to be taken up seriously and each and every house and street needs to have an exit for storm water.
A few days back there was a heavy dust storm accompanied by rain in Dehradun which not only uprooted number of trees but caused heavy floods in many colonies of the town flooding the connecting streets which affected the traffic and water entered in many houses where there are no exits. Since the drains remain choked and on streets building materials are allowed to be stocked the water has to find some way and no wonder the water enters the low lying houses or shops damaging the materials. It gave just a glimpse of what more is likely to come since this year Uttarakhand is to have its full quota of rains. Recently it was announced by the authorities that 90 roads in different localities are to be given new surfaces and it is hoped that the drains along those roads will also be repaired or made new so that water flows down and has an exit. The flooding starts only when there is no exit for water. Either the drains are blocked or there is no drain further as some houses are allowed to be built in the area from where the water is supposed to flow from there to the next stream. In spite of the fact that this situation is creating obstructions no action is being taken by the authorities to remove those unauthorized obstructions. Similarly there are no exits between adjoining houses as the houses which came up later have not bothered to ensure that the water which will from previous houses has some exit somewhere so that it does not create floods.
Surprisingly constructions have been allowed at places which fall on the exit as per the natural flow of water in the terrain to take water to adjoining drains or rivers. No wonder that the water will stagnate in those localities where exit has been blocked. To remove such obstructions from the natural flow of water from such areas is the major task.
Govt. should constitute some committee to ensure that each house has an exit which is not blocked by the adjoining house which is constructed later. Moreover it should also be ensure by the committee that all drains have proper water exits. It will certainly remove the flooding all over and no loss of life and will be possible.
More over solar water lifting pumps be put at junctions where water logging is quite common as in those places. These can be put at some hidden place from where water should be thrown to adjoining water flowing areas. No obstruction to the natural flow of water be allowed at any cost.
Since more such dust storms are predicted along with heavy rains Authorities should take necessary preventive steps so that such situations could be avoided especially in the areas which are low or where slum colonies have come up and where strong floods are likely to sweep away everything which has been seen in the recent three cloud bursts at different three places in the state. It is all happening because surveys have not being carried out as per watershed and anything which obstructs is swept away bringing disaster. Govt. must ensure that watershed surveys are carried out all over and buildings etc which obstruct the flow are removed or shifted.
The recent judgment of the Hon,ble high court to stop hydro Dams under construction and dump the Malba in adjoining area is even more alarming unless it is carried out in a way that it diverts the flow of water and creates more problems under the strain of disturbing the watershed system. It may not bring disaster.
The Concerned departments are requested to take up this aspect seriously before the rains start. Since heavy rains are in the offing it should be given top priority. The Hon’ble Governor and Chief Minister of the State of Uttarakhand are requested to give personal attention to this very serious problem.