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Can Delhi handle another deluge?


Urvashi Gulia,CNN-IBN
Jun 28, 2007 at 09:47pm IST

New Delhi: An entire summer is spent waiting for dark clouds to gather, but none of us appreciate what follows a downpour and the usual thoughts follow - is the Capital prepared for a deluge?

The Met Department predicts that rainfall this year will be normal.

Says Director, Met Department, B P Yadav, "This rain spell over Northwest India is likely to continue for the next 48 hours."

In 2006, Delhi received over 665 mm of rainfall - slightly above the nomal mark. Despite that, scenes like of traffic jams and waterlogging were common across the city and National Capital Region.

Though previous incidents suggest that the Capital cannot handle a huge downpour, but, the MCD - responsible for the upkeep of over 1,200 large storm water drains and 4,000 smaller ones - says it is almost ready.

Says MCD leader of the House, Subhash Arya, "We have already engaged lots of labourers to avoid this. Unfortunately, trucks are not easily available. We have managed to clean the drains, but some parts of the problem still persist."

The MCD claims to have installed pumps at 56 points prone to excessive waterlogging but little care has been taken for problems like falling trees and road blocks.

With the desilting drive yet to be complete, Delhi can look forward to another waterlogged monsoon.

(With inputs from in Marya Shakil New Delhi)

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