Unseasonal rains have hit Hyderabad, giving residents a preview of what to expect during monsoon season. Despite government promises, work on water bodies like lakes and drains is moving slowly, which is crucial to prevent flooding. Projects in Karwan, Shah Hatim Talab, Langer Houz Talab, Naya Qila Talab, and Jamali Kunta are unlikely to be completed before monsoon season. These areas and surrounding colonies have been heavily affected by flooding in the past due to a lack of outlets for backwaters to exit. Residents live with overflowing drains, blocked channels, debris dumping, and narrowing channels due to rampant construction and encroachments.
Shrinking lakes like Shah Hatim Talab and Langar Houz Talab have turned into dumping sites for household goods, construction waste, and tons of plastic. Although the civic body initiated several projects to save the lakes and prevent flooding, they failed. The GHMC has initiated a project to revamp the stormwater drain network in Tolichowki and has sanctioned a total of Rs 15 crore for Shah Hatim lake and Balakapur Nala to prevent flooding in residential areas during rains. In addition, Rs 8 crore were sanctioned for the diversion of Balakapur nala.
To reduce the capacity of water in Shah Hatim Lake, a new outlet was constructed to ensure the smooth passage of rainwater into river Musi. New stormwater pipelines were laid to reduce backwater that rushes into residential colonies of Tolichowki. Major open Nalas like Balkapur Nala, Gulshan Colony Nala, and Moti Darwaza Nala are now free from bottlenecks and no major inundation has been reported.
However, residents in surrounding colonies are still scared of monsoon season as they have experienced heavy inundation in the past despite the civic body’s claims. The work of laying Trunk Lines has been taken up phase-wise, but residents remain cautious.