Heavy rains in Mumbai again; local train services disrupted

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Mumbai, Jul 19 (PTI) A day after heavy showers pounded Mumbai, the rain intensity reduced briefly on Monday morning but picked up momentum again during the day, causing water-logging at some places and disruption of local train services on the Central Railway route, officials said.

On Sunday, 30 people were killed in the metropolis in rain-related incidents, including 19 in Mahul area of Chembur where a retaining wall collapsed on some houses after a landslide.

On Monday, no fresh death was reported, an official from the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) said.

However, after a brief spell of reduced intensity in the morning, the rains picked up pace again during the day, causing inundation in some areas.

Local train services on the Central Railway's slow line were suspended for about half-an-hour around 3 pm on Monday due to flooding on tracks between Kalwa and Mumbra stations in neighbouring Thane district, CR's chief spokesperson Shivaji Sutar said.

The services were later restored on the slow corridor by 3.35 pm, he said.

Earlier in the day, water-logging occurred between Vikhroli and Bhandup rail section following heavy showers in parts of the suburbs, Sutar said.

The suburban train services were suspended in that section of the main line from 10.35 am to 10.50 am as a precautionary measure, he said.

The station yard in Thane was also inundated and as a result, trains were running slow, railway sources said.

A rail activist said the CR's suburban train timetable was disturbed due to water-logging between Vikhroli and Bhandup section as well as at Thane station.

According to some passengers, there was bunching of trains on CR route near the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus (CSMT) in south Mumbai.

Trains were taking at least 30 minutes to cover the distance between Byculla to CSMT, as againat the usual time of 10-12 minutes, they said.

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, both the Central Railway and Western Railway used to ferry over 75 lakh commuters a day in over 3,000 suburban train services, which are now being operated only for emergency services staff and government employees.

In the Kasara Ghat section, located about 130 km from Mumbai, a mudslide occurred on one of the three rail lines early Monday morning, Sutar said.

Traffic was affected only on the down line due to the mudslide, but trains were running on the middle and up lines, according to the Central Railway.

The eastern suburbs of Mumbai recorded the highest 90.65 mm rainfall in the 24-hour period ending at 8 am on Monday, as compared to 48.88 mm rainfall in the island city and 51.89 mm rainfall in western suburbs, a BMC official said.

The India Meteorological Department (IMD) on Monday afternoon issued a 'red alert' for Mumbai and other districts in the Konkan region, predicting extremely heavy rainfall at isolated places over the next 24 hours.

Alerts by the IMD are colour-coded from green to red. A 'green' alert stands for 'no warning': no action needs to be taken by the authorities, and the forecast is of light to moderate rain. A 'red' alert stands for 'warning', and asks authorities to 'take action'. An ‘orange’ alert indicates that the authorities are expected to “be prepared”.

According to civic officials, bus services of the Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport (BEST) were running normal, except for a few places in suburbs.

On Sunday evening, Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray took stock of the preparedness by various government agencies to tackle any emergency.

Thackeray had directed the agencies to remain more alert and asked authorities to keep a watch on landslide-prone areas and dilapidated buildings. PTI KK GK GK

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