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Rains halt Mumbai, commuters hit hard as local trains cancelled

Mumbai:  Normal life in the country's financial capital came to a grinding halt today as torrential rains wreaked havoc in the city and its suburbs leading to cancellation of local train services that left thousands
PTI June 19, 2015 17:29 IST
PTI

Mumbai:  Normal life in the country's financial capital came to a grinding halt today as torrential rains wreaked havoc in the city and its suburbs leading to cancellation of local train services that left thousands of commuters stranded.

The downpour also led to disruption of vehicular traffic and delayed flight operations with three services being diverted.

The average rainfall recorded in 24 hours ending 8 AM today is City 188 mm, Eastern Suburbs 155 mm, Western Suburbs 172 mm, according to the meteorological department.

Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has also issued an alert in view of the high tide (4.47 metres) expected during the day. People were also asked to avoid sea facing roads.

The rains caused water-logging in almost all low-lying areas of Mumbai and its suburbs including Kurla, Chembur, Tilak Nagar, Andheri, Parel, Lower Parel, Thane, Navi Mumbai and Dombivili.

There seems to be no let up in the situation with the Meteorological Department predicting heavy to very heavy monsoon rains in some areas.

The heavy rains also forced Shiv Sena to cancel its foundation day event while the Bombay High Court declared holiday today as lawyers and staff could not turn up.

All courts in Mumbai including the HC will remain shut for the day due to heavy rains, officials said.

One flight each of Indigo and Jet Airways had to be diverted to Ahmedabad, while a third one of Go Air had to be sent to Vadodara, said a spokesperson for the Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport (CSIA).

While Central Railway services still remain cancelled, the Western Railway has partially resumed services on a limited stretch between Andheri and Virar.

Earlier in the day, thousands of commuters leaving for offices were caught unaware on reaching the suburban railway stations as trains were being cancelled due to water-logging of tracks following heavy downpour since last night.

Narrating his ordeal, Nalasopara resident Atul Panday, an executive working with Alkem Laboratories said, "Normally, it takes me 50 minutes to reach Andheri from Nalasopara, but today it took around two hours."

BMC has already ordered schools across the city to remain shut in view of rains while Mumbai University (MU) deferred examinations of BA, MA and also the practical examinations of MSC.

MU Deputy-Registrar Leeladhar Bansod said all examinations have been put off to the next date as it was not possible for students to come to exam centres due to heavy rains.

Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis visited the BMC control room and reviewed the situation. “I reviewed the situation with the chief secretary and top civic officials,” he said.