To what now seems like an annual affair, the city of Navi Mumbai has yet again gone down in drains even as heavy rains lashed the MMR region.
With halting mobility and bringing upon chaos and misery to citizens, incidents of waterlogging, tree fall incidents, delayed train services and traffic jams were reported across different parts of Mumbai and Navi Mumbai.
Even as heavy rains swelled up the streams at the popular tourist spot Kharghar hills and Pandavkada waterfalls, the police and the fire brigade personnel have rescued 116 revellers — including 78 women and 5 children, using an iron ladder and a plastic rope after they were stranded on Kharghar hills since Sunday evening.
Keeping up with its perpetuity, another monsoon has unfolded another deluge for Navi Mumbaikars yet again revealing the shams and failures of the Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation (NMMC) and exposing their long-term delayed preparedness to combat civic issues of monsoon.
The burdens of an outdated drainage system, demolition of the natural barriers against climate change and unsustainable urbanisation are weighing heavy in bringing down all possible chances of the city’s capacity in dealing with heavy monsoons.
To what comes as a shocker, is that even in a pandemic as vicious as COVID-19 the authorities seem quite slow in combating civic issues that relatively affect the health of the masses posing threats of water-borne and mosquito-borne diseases.
While it is clear that COVID-19 has mucked up all plans of both the civic bodies, BMC and NMMC for monsoon, concerns over health-risks and dangers of infections for the vulnerable in congested slums still thrives as the city lies in the throes of a deadly pandemic.
It is time that the civic authorities shift their time, efforts and money over solving real-time issues of the citizens than spending big bucks over blanket beautification of the city, a facade over the failures.
The need of the hour demands not just a revamp of our drainage systems but of the political systems as well for an unbridled smooth functioned urban development.
What calls itself a self-claimed and a well-planned city, Navi Mumbai today lies in shambles professing it to be a city of potholes, garbage spills and gutter unless relaxed and irregular actions are undone.