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Efforts on to prevent flooding in west Chennai

Staff Reporter

Floodwater inundated houses close to the Virugambakkam canal


  • Officials decide to divert water to the Cooum
  • Work on to construct two culverts at Maduravoyal, Vanagaram
  • Encroachments on Virugambakkam canal have compounded matters



    THE BANE OF WEST CHENNAI: The Virugambakkam canal overflows into adjacent areas such as Sai Nagar. — Photo: K. Pichumani

    CHENNAI: With another cyclone approaching the Tamil Nadu coast, government officials are trying to find some quick-fix solutions to minimise further flooding in western parts of the city.

    Virugambakkam, Valsaravakkam, Mogappair, Saligramam, MMDA Colony, Choolaimedu and adjoining areas were badly affected in the recent rain mainly because of the surplus water flow from Maduravoyal, Nerkundram and Vanagaram. The floodwaters entered hundreds of houses close to the 11-km-long Virugambakkam canal.

    On Wednesday, a team of officials visited Maduravoyal, Nerkundram and Vanagaram and decided that the best way to prevent the gradient flow of water would be to divert it to the Cooum.

    By afternoon work was on to construct two culverts at Maduravoyal and Vanagaram, cutting across Poonamallee High Road, to divert the water into the Cooum which has a higher capacity.

    The Virugambakkam canal is essentially a storm water carrier for Virugambakkam, Chinmaya Nagar, Sai Nagar and adjoining areas. But due to flow of water from upstream, it is overburdened, resulting in severe inundation. Encroachments on the canal have compounded matters. This has also been the root cause of the flooding along the 100-feet-road near Vadapalani.

    A nightmare

    S. Punita, a 67-year-old resident of First Main Road, Sai Nagar, Virugambakkam, said she was forced to move out of her house for two days. "The water was three-foot-deep inside the house. It was a nightmare."

    The ordeal of several other senior citizens has been just as horrendous. Some bed-ridden residents and handicapped people were left to fend for themselves without electricity for two days. In several houses, home appliances, including television, refrigerator and washing machine, were damaged.

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