Like almost every year, the monsoon in Mumbai has again thrown the daily life out of gear. The city's lifeline, local trains, were affected on Thursday as heavy rains lashed the Maximum City. Trains running on Mumbai's suburban railway lines were delayed today by at least 20 minutes. The weather has not even spared the air traffic - a Jet Airways flight from London to Mumbai was diverted to Ahmedabad.
Taking precautions in the wake of India Meteorological Department (IMD) forecast warning of a heavy downpour, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has cancelled leaves of all the senior employees, including Deputy Municipal commissioners, Assistant Commissioners and heads of departments. They have been directed to work on June 9 and 10 (Saturday and Sunday).
The weathermen have predicted "heavy to very heavy" rainfall along the Maharashtra coast over this weekend. To tackle monsoon-related disasters, the BMC said three teams of National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) will be stationed at Parel, Mankhurd (for eastern suburbs) and Andheri Sports Complex (for western suburbs). They are equipped with walkie-talkies and flood rescue material. Besides, Navy personnel will be deployed in Colaba, Worli, Ghatkopar, Trombay, Malad for flood rescue if required, the BMC said.
In addition to this, six Flood Rescue Teams of Mumbai Fire Brigade will be posted at the Regional Command Centres and emergency support functions like BEST (bus transport system), police, traffic police and education officers have been alerted.
The education officers monitoring school premises in all 24 administrative wards have been asked to keep shelter schools open 247. De-watering pumps will be kept ready and flood-prone spots will be monitored closely during the heavy rain period, statement said.
As per the IMD forecast, there is a possibility of very heavy rainfall in Ratnagiri, Sindhudurg, Mumbai, Thane, Raigad and Palghar districts on June 9. There is a similar forecast for the six districts of Konkan region, including Mumbai, and surrounding areas on June 10 and 11.
According to Skymet Weather, moderate to heavy rain and thundershowers would continue for next one or two hours. Subsequently, rains may take a brief break but will return soon. Frequent rainy spells filled with some heavy rains would continue throughout the day, predict weathermen.
Mumbai has to take utmost caution, particularly in the next three days June 8-10. Some heavy to very heavy rains are likely to deluge the city. Famous three-digit rainfall are also likely during this time, the weather agency said.
While there have been reports of flash flooding and water-logging in some areas, the next two-three days as said to be critical.
with PTI inputs