Heavy rain pounds Mumbai, flight operations hit

Mumbai, Sep 20: Afraid of a repeat of the deluge on August 29 this year, panic-stricken Mumbaiites stayed put indoors even as heavy rains pounded the city. The administration asked schools and colleges to shut down after the IMD warned of heavy to very heavy rains.With major roads in the city flooding since Tuesday night, most residents chose to take the day off and stay at home.

The city’s ‘local’ trains, which were running slower by half-an-hour in many places had fewer people travelling. Though a few services were cancelled, the suburban train services of both the Western and Central Railways were plying normally, officials from both organisations said this afternoon.

According to the weather bureau, the city received 304 mm of rainfall in the 24 hours ending 8 am today. This was only slightly lower than the 316 mm of rainfall reported on August 29 this year. However, the intensity of the rainfall has tapered down towards the afternoon.Worst hit were flights to and from Mumbai after a SpiceJet aircraft skidded off the runway and got stuck on the mud late Tuesday night.

The authorities diverted more than five dozen international and domestic flights to various airports across the country. Later in the day, the secondary runway of the airport was made operational.

Airport officials said the normal services were likely to resume later on Wednesday afternoon. According to the weather bureau heavy rains have been reported from coastal Konkan and western Maharashtra in addition to Mumbai.

Mumbai’s Dabbawalas, too, said they were cancelling their tiffin box delivery services due to the heavy rain. The dabbawalas supply more than two lakh lunch boxes across the city every day. Meanwhile, the police have warned people against rumours being spread across social media. Messages on WhatsApp earlier today spoke of the Bandra-Worli Sealink and other arterial roads being shut down after floods. This was denied by the city police.The authorities also debunked rumours of a cyclone scheduled to hit Mumbai later this afternoon.

Source Tribune India