Heavy rains lash Mumbai, offices shut down, trains suspended
Heavy rains lashed several parts of Mumbai through Tuesday night (September 22), leaving the city waterlogged and disrupting road and rail traffic. With the India Meteorological Department predicting “heavy to very heavy rains” in the city in the next 24 hours, Mumbai’s municipal commissioner Iqbal Singh Chahal has asked all offices and establishments, barring essential services, to be shut on Wednesday.
A Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) release said Chahal has also appealed Mumbaikars not to step out of their homes, unless it is an emergency.
The western suburbs of the city received between 150 mm to 200 mm rainfall after the rains picked up late on Tuesday evening.
There were intense spells across Mumbai for a few hours overnight, an official told PTI.
Several streets and low-lying areas were waterlogged due to overnight rains and the road traffic was also badly hit, a civic official told PTI. Some vehicles broke down in the water, affecting the traffic movement, he added.
— Paresh M Kanade (@PareshKanade96) September 22, 2020
Twitter was flooded with photos of inundated streets and railway lines, with many residents also urging civic authorities to lend help to stranded denizens.
Maharashtra: Mumbai’s Nair Hospital flooded following heavy rainfall in the city. It is a COVID-19 dedicated hospital.
As per Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), Mumbai city received 173 mm rainfall in the last 24 hours. pic.twitter.com/Y2YdYXls9n
— ANI (@ANI) September 23, 2020
The downpour led to disruption of public transport services on Wednesday morning. Train services on the Central and Harbour lines were suspended.
A Central Railway spokesperson said suburban services were suspended at 5 am on Wednesday following heavy rains along the tracks. “Due to heavy rain and waterlogging in Sion-Kurla and Chunabhatti-Kurla, traffic has been suspended on CSMT-Thane and CSMT-Vashi sections for safety reasons,” he said.
Special shuttle services are being run between Thane- Kasara, Thane-Karjat and Vashi-Panvel stations, while several long distance trains have been rescheduled, he said.
The Western Railway also said its suburban train service has been suspended due to heavy rain and water logging between Churchgate-Andheri stations. “Suburban locals service is running normally between Andheri and Virar,” it tweeted.
Suburban trains, considered the lifeline of Mumbai, are being operated for essential services employees due to COVID-19 outbreak and common citizens are not authorised to travel in them as of now.
A civic official said the public bus service of the Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport (BEST) has also been hit due to waterlogged streets, and traffic diverted at several locations. The India Meteorological Department (IMD) had issued an orange alert with a forecast of heavy rainfall at some places in Mumbai and Thane during the day. According to K S Hosalikar, deputy director general of IMD, 122.2 mm rain was recorded at Colaba and 273.6 mm at Santacruz till 5.30 am.