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Floods >> Extent of Disaster >> Reason
  Mumbai Flood Relief and Rehabilitation Resource Centre 
in association with Times Foundation

BMC Disaster Control: Phone: 1916 or 108 or 22694725 / 7 or Fax 22694719. Online complaints via
Times Helpline: 56354376 / 45
Karmayog Helpline: 98201-55591 (Upadhyay)   

Mumbai Disaster 64-pg warning report unheeded (of Sr. IAS Jadhav)

Unread warning report fished out after deluge Publication: TOI Mumbai; Date: Aug 12, 2005 By Yogesh Naik TIMES NEWS NETWORK

Mumbai: Will the two committees set up by Vilasrao Deshmukh to prevent a repetition of Terrible Tuesday amount to much? If past experience is 
anything to go by, the reports will probably decay in a government godown until the next disaster strikes.

Had the government and the BMC implemented a 64-page report that senior IAS official Rani Jadhav filed following the floods in Mumbai on July 11-12, 2000, much of the chaos that followed the deluge on July 26 this year could have been avoided. Jadhav, who was asked by the state government to probe the administration's handling of the 2000 deluge, filed a report that zeroed in on the anomalies in the system that accentuated the floods, and suggested a plan of action to avoid similar failure in future. However, the report gathered dust soon after it was sent to the then chief secretary Arun Bongirwar. Today, the relief and rehabilitation department claims it has never seen a copy of it.

    TOI excerpts some of Jadhav's suggestions and checks out whether they were implemented.

Report says: Vihar and Tulsi lakes overflowed in 2000, causing damage to 240 families staying in encroachments along the Mithi. Desilting of the river
needs to be done and hutments removed. Action taken: None. Encroachments have increased since 2000, and the Mithi river caused havoc in the Kalina area during these rains. 

Report says: Cattle sheds along many important drains pose a risk. Action taken: None. On 26/7, carcasses of buffaloes clogged the drains of Mumbai
and affected the flow of storm water.

Report says: Information should be passed on to officials in the government immediately.

Action taken: None. On 26/7, messages were not conveyed. This time additional chief secretary, home, A P Sinha, who chairs the disaster
management committee, was not in India.

Report says: There is no permanent staff in the emergency operations centre at Mantralaya and no proper record is maintained. 
Action taken: Even after repeated reminders, the control room of Mantralaya still does not have dedicated staff and is manned by officials drawn from
various departments who work in shifts.

Report says: The emergency operations centre must get proper feedback from the control rooms of the police and BMC.
Action taken: Even in the 2005 rains, the communication was minimal, say sources in Mantralaya.

Report says: On July 11 and 12, 2000, there was no official communication regarding the weather forecasts between various government agencies. Also, the forecasts are too generalised. 
Action taken: The forecasts are still the same and there was not much communication this time too.

Report says: In 2000, of the 55 calls made to the control rooms in Mantralaya, only three were answered, that too with the response "We will revert.''
Action taken: This time too, things were no better. When a top bureaucrat said the army needed to be called in, the staff in the control room did not have the numbers. The control room also realised that it did not have enough phone lines.

Report says: At least 44 electronic display boards should have been set up from Cuffe Parade to Borivli and Thane to enable dissemination of 
information during disasters. 
Action taken: The BMC has two boards, one at Chowpatty and the other at Haji Ali. But these are not in working condition any more.

Report says: The administration failed to recognise and respond to the grave situation on the ground promptly... There was a total breakdown of
communication.... The public had no education on what to do. 
Action taken: The situation was exactly the same in July 2005. 

Report says: Slums located along hilltops and slopes, under high-tension wires and along railway lines should be removed.
Action taken: Slums on the hillocks and other places have not yet been shifted.

Report says: There should be a public address system (PAS) in trains and wireless communication between motormen and guards.
Action taken: Though the railways have fitted suburban trains with a PAS, they have yet to start using it. Thanks to this, commuters were left in the
lurch during the 26/7 downpour. 

Report says: The BMC should hold meetings of the disaster management committee at headquarters and at the ward levels. Railways officials do not
attend the meetings, which they should. In 2000, the wireless given to the railways was found in the chief freight manager's stenographer's room.
Action taken: Vilas Vaidya, disaster management head of the BMC, says the participation from the railways at the ward-level disaster management
committee is still poor. 

Report says: Undertake the Brihanmumbai Storm Water Drain project (Brimstowad) to immediately change the 70-year-old Mumbai drains which
cannot take more than 25 mm of rain during high tide. 
Action taken: For five years, the BMC slept over the plan. It is only after this deluge that chief minister Vilasrao Deshmukh has written to prime
minister Manmohan Singh to sanction the funds.

Report says: There was no communication between the home guards and civil defence control room during the July 2000 rains.
Action taken: Even during these rains, the civil defence was alerted very late, sources in the state control room said.

Report says: The BMC has suggested punitive measures for ensuring strict compliance with Disaster Management Plan procedures. Action taken: No one in the BMC has been punished for his/her unprofessional attitude during the crisis.

Report says: Include the traffic police in the disaster management plan.
Action taken: "We are now a member of disaster management plan. In fact, we attended one of the meetings too,'' said joint commissioner (traffic) Satish Mathur. But deputy CM R R Patil was very upset with the performance of the traffic police.

Report says: There must be a proper line of communication between the fire brigade and meteorological department, BMC and other control rooms.
Action taken: Communication gap existed this time too. Chief fire officer A D Jhandwal said this time the fire brigade had communication with BMC
control room. Deputy police commissioner, Zone X, Ravindra Sengaonkar said despite repeated reminders to fire brigade, they turned up 17 hours late at Saki Naka landslide.

A-TRAST-NAGARIK" <> Aug 13, 2005
Chronicle of a Disaster Foretold!

[The problems that Bombay faced in the wake of unprecedented heavy rains are essentially threefold. We’ll have to look for the factors that have aggravated the disaster. We’ll also have to examine what have or have not been done during and after the disaster. 

It’s not only the Mithi River, Bombay has/had a number of natural waterways. In the name of (breakneck and unplanned) development, the major ones have been badly tampered with and many of the minor ones have just disappeared. Then again, those, which are still there, remain clogged with solid waste materials badly blocking the flow. The fate of the constructed storm water drains is also very much the same.

While the bulk of the drain water is to flow to the sea, low-lying wet lands work as useful sinks, particularly for the areas away from the coastlines. These have been and are being systematically destroyed through filling up and reclamation.

On 26th of July, there was absolutely no communication. The police and the civic authorities miserably failed in informing people, through FM/radio, TV, SMS, mikes etc., about the severity of the rains and the conditions of the various roads and streets and the train tracks. A timely warning could have induced many to stay put wherever they were instead of coming out onto the streets risking their lives and limbs. There was hardly any attempt to guide the traffic flow either.

The post-deluge response was also as pathetic. Rescue operations for the marooned started much later. Garbage remained piled up for days. It’s not known whether any action has been taken till date to unclog the drains and waterways. Relief materials have just started trickling in. (Even during such calamity the police brutality didn’t wane a wee bit. Shelterless people busy erecting their own sheds were mercilessly assaulted.) Nor there’s any visible drive, in terms of inoculation and supply of clean municipal water to the affected, to counteract the possibilities of epidemic outbreaks. Only sanctimonious advices to consume boiled water are issued aplenty, which sounds like a bad joke unless some basic helps are provided.

So the corrective measures must address all the three phases.]

The Christian Science Monitor
August 03, 2005

Bombay asks: When will the rain stop?

Record rainfall - up to 37 inches in one day - has flooded the Indian city, leaving more than 900 dead.
By Anuj Chopra | Contributor to The Christian Science Monitor

    BOMBAY - When will the rain stop? That's the question everyone is asking in Bombay (Mumbai), the financial capital of India, since the monsoon 
began hammering the city eight days ago. Last Tuesday, a record 37 inches of water dropped on the city in one day. Although the rains have slowed to no more than six inches a day, the water collected isn't receding, leaving parts of the city underwater. Residents of Kalina and Kurla, some of the 
worst-hit areas, had eight feet of floodwater to deal with. The Army and Navy are still evacuating people from homes. More than 900 people are 
believed dead in and around Bombay. "I've not seen so much water in Bombay in my life ever before," Jagdish Kalra, a resident of suburban Bombay. "I didn't know if I should save myself or my belongings." Knee-deep water has filled up Mr. Kalra's residence, damaging most of his furniture and sending his clothes, shoes, and utensils floating in murky waters. The shutting down of India's second city and the loss of life has prompted municipal officials to start heeding past warnings from environmentalists about development run amok. With dreams of becoming "the Shanghai of India," 
Bombay is a city bursting at its seams, cramming 16,000 people per square mile. Poorly planned development and neglected infrastructure prevented much of the water from draining harmlessly out to sea, say critics. The city's storm water drainage system is archaic. Water drains through the more than 100-year-old pipes at an abnormally slow pace of one inch per hour. Only one-third of the 124-mile stretch of this drainage system has been 
modernized. The municipal commissioner of Bombay, Johny Joseph, assured modernization of the remaining part will be taken up, something which 
will cost $275 million.
    Surface drains, meanwhile, had become clogged by indiscriminate dumping of garbage, according to Mr. Joseph. The resulting pressure on the 
underground drains, he says, led to the failure of the entire drainage system. Rampant development in recent years also choked off natural avenues for water drainage. According to Accommodation Times, a real estate and property market publication, today there are more than 12,000 sq. feet of construction projects going on in full swing in Bombay, many of them unchecked and unauthorized. Environmental experts say that the reclaiming of 
large tracts of land against all rules, laws, and expert advice, for construction is blocking the natural course of flood waters flowing into the sea.
"People in Bombay seem to suffer from ecological illiteracy," says Darryl D'monte, a well-known author and environmentalist. "We believe we can 
construct indiscriminately anywhere without considering cataclysmic ecological repercussions of it."
The Bandra-Worli sealink project, a multimillion dollar effort to link the western suburbs to the island city of Bombay, has constricted the mouth 
of the city's Mithi River. "The river is the city's biggest storm water drain. If you constrict the mouth of this river, how can water escape into the sea?" asked Mr. D'monte. "We're paying the price for development," Bittu Sahgal, a well-known environmentalist and editor of Sanctuary Asia magazine said. Nine years ago Mr. Sahgal was on the Ministry of Environment's infrastructure expert committee. He rejected the Bandra-Worli road project three times because of the flood danger. He was thrown off the committee and the project was subsequently cleared. The damage caused by the Mithi River flooding, says Sahgal, is probably going to be around $460 million - at least twice the cost of the Bandra-Worli project when it was approved. Environmentalists also decry the Bandra-Kurla complex in suburban Bombay, which houses world-class business centers - a swanky symbol of urban prosperity. It is built on large tracts of mangroves. "Mangroves are the best barriers between land and sea," says Deepak Apte, who heads the Conservation Department, Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS). "It's alarming how 70 percent of the mangrove area around Bombay has been reclaimed." This disaster in the past eight days is expected to jolt the civic administration and the government - who've been at the receiving end of public anger since the flooding began - into taking preventative action. Ruminations about ways to avert such a tragedy in the future have begun. There is talk of a more comprehensive disaster management plan by the government, something discussed after the tsunami, but which never materialized. The Bombay government is considering whether to partially implement recommendations made over a decade ago by foreign consultants. The 1993 Metclafe and Eddy report suggested ways to upgrade the city's drainage system. And Joseph, the municipal commissioner, says he recognizes the need for an independent communication link to warn people about such disasters well in advance. In the meantime, Bombay residents are working to restore their city. Raju, a laborer struggling in waist-deep water in the badly affected area of Kalina, joked: "They couldn't make it a Shanghai, at least they've made it Venice." 
Sukla Sen 
Aug 4, 2005
The recent ravages due to downpour in Mumbai has raised many questions and citizens have been compelled to point accusing fingers not only at the powers-that-be but at the role played by the media in the past for such sorry state of affairs.

The reason, I feel, the media too needs to be blamed is that, though being the eyes and ears of the common man and the discerning readers, they
have failed to expose the misgovernance of every Government starting from Chief Minister Y B Chavan to the present Vilasrao Deshmukh.

When our coastal areas were reclaimed and sold off to the highest bidder, when dereservations of our open spaces - such as playgrounds and recreational grounds were permitted at the drop of a hat to favour the builders and developers, when despite protests from the citizens on the 
unhindered influx into the city the local Corporator and the MLA stalled evictions for cultivating his vote-bank, when laws were tampered with to 
deny open spaces to the citizens, when extra FSIs were doled out to builders for re-development of perfectly healthy cessed buildings, when our wetlands were destroyed and mangroves were hacked to permit construction of golf-courses, clubs, entertainment plazas and residential colonies and even slums to come up and when the irregularities committed by our Corporators and MLAs in the Building Proposal and Urban Development Departments were overlooked and not exposed by the media. Instead the media indulged in reporting frivolties like the Mayor evesdropping on the going-on of the Standing Committees or promote the Page 3 culture or report on the antics of filmstars or socialites or some such thing. Even a TV channel, without checking the veracity of the news, reported that the Barvi Dam had burst in Thane thus giving rise to another round of panic in the already harried citizens.

A common citizen could not have had access to the decisions taken in the corridors of powers, but the reporters of the media who were specifically put on duty and were privy to the policies framed, the rules violated, the decisions taken by the people in power.

At the end of the day when such calamities strike, the common man feels the gravest impact, in terms of loss of life and damage to property not to mention the tremendous physical and mental agony due to the consequence of the neglect and abuse of the powers of our polit-bureau, also the violations of the laws of the land by the people in power such as systematic destruction of our city and it's coasts and mangroves, allowing the area around our water bodies to be encroached and get polluted due to disposal of raw sewage, industrial wastes and garbage. How the Mithi river which at one time was beautiful and serene has now been allowed to be degenerated into a stinking nallah? How "development" has been permitted
with no concern whatsoever for the environment? 

The media at least now needs to do some soul-searching and introspect on why and where did it fail in it's duties in bringing out the true picture, on exposing the rot-in-the-making despite it being the watchdog for the common man. It needs to take responsibility for not halting the rape of this city, perpetrated by a bunch of greedy nincompoops, in it's tracks. It needs to mend it's ways.

I earnestly hope at least now onwards the media becomes proactive and takes up the responsibility to investigate every little scandal and misdeeds
of the Government, of taking our rulers to task for bad policies or corruption in it's ranks etc. and thus fulfill it's obligation to this city, the Society and the nation. 

Madhu Sawant,
Shivaji Park, Dadar, Mumbai-28 
"If we fight, we may not always win, but if we don't fight, we will surely lose." Save--our-- Mumbai
A city's recipe for watery disaster - Surekha Sule
Mumbai's looming ecological disaster 
By Payal Kapadia in Mumbai 

National Alliance of People’s Movements
Haji Habib Bldg. Naigaon Cross Rd. Dadar East. Mumbai 400 014 Ph : 24150529 

Press Note – 31-7-2005

Flooding In Bombay – Myth and Reality !!!!

We were appalled to learn how ignorant we all were when we were informed that the slums are the cause of the flooding in Bombay!!!!! It’s not the rains – stupid !!!!

Bombay has a massive expanse of sea into which any amount of water can drain without the water level rising even an inch. Why then is there this kind of flooding, especially in certain areas of the financial capital of India? 

The Truth seems to lie with the MMRDA “digging before dialing” and reclaiming large tracts of land against all rules, laws and expert advise – thereby disturbing the entire drainage of the area. 

- The Airport Authority has succeeded in diverting the Mithi River to an extent that it has now submerged its own employees! 

- The Bandra - Kurla Complex seems to be an excellent example of bad planning – it has reclaimed 730 acres of land , ignoring the recommendations of the K.G. Paranjape Committee of 1987; Dr. Kulkarni’s Report done for the Central Institute of Fisheries 1992; The Mangrove Committee of 1993 ; NEERI Report 1994 – 96 ; BNHS Report for the MOEF . Warnings against reclamation have been loud, clear and repeated. The Mahim Creek is also a biological filter.

Despite all this, the MMRDA and related agencies treated the “Wet-lands” of Mumbai as “Waste-lands”, called the Mithi River and it’s tributaries “ Nallahs” and treated them as gutters instead of estuaries which are breeding grounds for fish and proceeded to disturb the entire drainage system of the area. 

The much advertised “ Environmentally – Friendly” Bandra – Worli Sea – Link , despite protests, has gone ahead and built the foot of the bridge in a manner that blocks the outlet of the Mithi River into the sea – sending the waters back to flood the interiors. 
The Western Express Highways, Link Roads, road expansion are undertaken on fast track basis for Transport and Communication , blocking natural drainage and resulting in a total collapse of the same. 

All this and other such “development projects” have resulted in the current developments in the city. 

The complete collapse of disaster management excused by A.N. Roy with a cursory “disaster cannot be expected”, is patently false, as repeated warnings even in black and white have been given to the Government even by Committees set up by the Government itself. 

The lack of police in the streets, no divers, no rations, no drinking water, no doctors to help the sick, have left the onus of helping their fellow bretheren on the shoulders of the common man on the streets. The least the government and its agencies can do is not destroy what has been donated on humanitarian grounds and let the people take shelter in the empty transit camps and SRA blocks – even on a temporary basis. 

Medha Patkar, Arif Kadri, Kaushalya Salvi
I fully support Madhu Sawant's views that thin plastic bags are a nuisance to public, environment, especially drains which they block. I find it surprising that every one in media is criticizing everything BUT not a single word against thin plastic bags which are a major reasn for blocked drains. Maybe the plastic lobby blocked it!

Some of the many possible solutions are
1. use of ecofriendly paper-bags (prevalent in pre-plastic bag days)
2. proper disposal systems & fines for people loitering plastic bags (any size)
3. Totally ban thin bags
4. Ask plastic mfrs to install (plastic) bins for disposal in public places and to create awareness ..

Ramesh Patodia (, Aug 1, 2005
If we look at original Geographical map of Mumbai, Mumbai is formed by connecting seven islands. It clearly indicates Mithi River must not be at all present there at that time. Mithi River is the nature's gift to the Mumbai. It was & is a need of rising population and reclamation of land. But every thing has saturation point. It has been created to swallow majority of rain water & sewage generated from Mumbai's land. Ten years before Dr. A.G. Oontwale of (NEERI) National Environmental Engineering Research Institute of Oceanography had warned the Government. But it went over deaf ears of Politicians and Bureaucrats.

Over flowing water from lakes of Tulsi, Vihar, and Powai and also from the ridges, valleys of hills of Borivali are responsible for the birth of Mithi River. Neither this area of lakes was part of the islands nor the lakes were constructed. One can point out origin of Mithi River at L&T factory at Powai (Vihar Village). At the end, Mithi discharges all its water in to the Arabian Sea at Mahim.

Mithi is being gang raped by Politician, Builders and we citizens of Mumbai. No body has spared her. Present floods are her sulk, anger and curse. As mentioned by others at Karmayog news letter, like plastic bag is a minimal reason. One of the major causes is garbage dumped in to the Mithi River through its 15km stretch. This pollution reduced the flowing capacity of Mithi. For details refer MPCB report at The Government itself failed
to take the cognizance of its own report.

While constructing Sahar AirPort, Mithi was turned ninety degree at two places. At Kurla Bail Bazar and just ahead of it. Moreover nature had bifurcated Mithi into two streams. This second stream was totally land filled for expansion of Sahar Air port.
The major cause for flooding at Air India & Indian Air Lines colony is also abuse on Mithi River. Rain water flowing from Kalina Military area is also disposed in to Mithi. At this meeting point a thick protective wall for Sahar Runway is constructed. However our intelligent (?) Civil Engineers did not forget to make a provision of 5" diameter pipe line to make a way for Mithi. But Mithi did prefer to RUN(A)WAY from this 5" pipe line and it made its own by demolishing this strong wall.

Further abuse is by MMRDA. Bandra-Kurla complex is developed by MMRDA. Here Mithi is made to flow like canal between two walls. Same is being repeated by MMRDA on Jogeshwari Link road. Concrete drains are being constructed for the flow of Mithi. See photo on page 47 of above referred MPCB website report.

Land grabbing by Builders with hand in glove with Politicians is another reason. Owner of the Company constructing Bandra-Worli sea link also seems to have a close link with a very big politician. The required land at Mahim for sea link was 4.7 hector. Whereas this Company  has reclaimed 40 hector of land. This reclamation has completely sealed the mouth of Mithi where it meets Arabian Sea. In 1987 the Committee of then Chief Secretary, Department of Fisheries and also Ministry of Environment and Forest has warned on various occasion to not to reclaim this land.

Nature is tired of Human atrocities. It is not able to treat the sewage generated by Metro cities. Quantity is beyond the capacity of nature. It is so large in volume that the Nature's military (Marine life) is also not capable of disposing this. World Scientists have come to the conclusion that quagmire created during past thousands of years only can treat this polluted water. This is the reason in year 1992 US Government has ordered to create swamps at New York. But in MERA BHARAT this precious marsh is being swallowed by gang of P&B (Politician & Builder) company.


References: Loksatta Daily, Sunday 31 July 2005 edition, & (July 31, 2005)
I would like you to convey the following to the Municipal Corporation officers including the Municipal Commissioner and ask for their explanation.

For the present disaster in the city the MCGM is solely responsible and it is their lethargy and inactivity in time that has brought the severe hardship for residents and other living beings. 

There was no serious reason as to why the water had to stagnate to such heights so as to suffocate people to death. It is only because of the unattended debris and the waste lying strewn that clogged the outlets of the storm water drains (which were already clogged and full with filth) and led to water accumulation. The MCGM should be solely held responsible for this. It is not that the citizens are facing such a disaster this time. Every year the situation is the same and citizens are left to suffer and after all this suffering the MCGM still behaves blindfolded. All the public money that is utilised in the name of work for cleaning goes down the drain without even achieving any desired outcome.

The MCGM is aware of the onslaught of monsoons on the highly vulnerable Mumbai situated hardly 5 metre above the mean sea level hence it has framed very specific rules.

1. No excavation shall be allowed on roads and public areas between 15 May and 15 October, All work on roads etc will be covered up by 15 May. No permission even for providing new water connection was given (residents shall have to wait for new connection till the end of the monsoons). 

2. All storm water drains and open gutters should be cleaned and excavated material to be hauled away before 31 May. The MCGM used to spend Rs 1.5 crores every year for this clean up.

3. All debris and other material lying on the roads to be lifted by 31 May and nobody would be allowed to dump in public areas.

None of the above decisions was observed this year even though the monsoons have been unduly delayed. 

Municipal work was going on either departmentally or through petty work contractors. The Assistant Ward Officer, who is also designated as Disaster Officer for the ward and his staff did not stop excavations. In the Suburbs everywhere heaps of debri and waste were lying. They were carried to the gutter opening by the heavy downpour and clogged all rain water drains. People were required to wade through dirty, foul smelling stagnant water lying everywhere for hours even after the intensity of rains had subsided. 

This water got mixed with drinking water at many points. 

Despite the Commissioner being the Chief Disaster management Officer this has happened. It is clear that the MCGM has failed in its duty as a public body.

Yours sincerely
Priya Salvi
Consultant, Solid Waste Management
Mo. 93231 96420
A few thoughts that come to my mind ,after living in Bombay for 56 years; 22 yrs in King's Circle, 6 yrs in Juhu (MHB Colony) and the rest in Garodia Nagar
  • In the Road sector, there has been a well discernible improvement in the matter  of mobility due to raised levels and the flyovers.
  • But, with indiscriminate concretising, normal draining by the soil on the edges of the roads and also within the buildings have added to the increased water-logging handicapping drainage to at least certain levels.  While in the 50's and 60's, to the best of my knowledge, the ground floor structures of even chawls were not so badly damaged  by seeping water from within the compounds as it had happened today. 
  • The most nauseating collusion between the builders lobby with the politicians (most of whom need to forced to say among the commoners than in posh localities) who registering new heights of abysmal lows in morals and ethics, has denied creation and existence of vacant lots in the colonies which could easily have facilitated alternate sources of drainage points.
  • To the best of my knowledge, I think we have been reading and listening to the heroic deeds done more by individuals or on-the-spot groups that spring up (as in the case of the AI Colony rescuing 250 bus passengers  than any of these Lions ( not even any cub), Rotarians etc. most of whom I think are interested in meeting on a specific day in a month listening to lectures or planning parties and jambories.  Could anyone educate me as to how many such NGO's have awakened themselves to organised on the spot rescue missions and not later day collection drives, blood donation camps, fee checkups and all that blah , blah?  I am afraid that almost ev ery street has one District of one or the other such blah, blah, ...
  • I honestly feel that right from the primary school level (even in the now-a-days obnoxious prenatal tiny tots) audio-visual presentations o f the effects of such natural disasters and stories of the brave and beautiful should be shown.  It is this stage the human being absorbs deeply the implications and the responsibility of an individual to the society.  
  • The older generations and even today, one knows very well how the relief materials find their way into the open markets
It is only such young minds which treat such necessities as a part of their own individual responsibility.  All of us elders if and when we do in most cases do it for the cameras and newspapers.
In case the above sounds like the ramblings of an aged or averaging man, please forgive and forget.
Thanks for a chance to vent out my deep anguish of today's values.
srl narasimhan

Ashif is absolutely right on both points. Natural calamities are so called because no amount of precaution helps save all lives, humans or animals. My friends who walked all the way from Jaslok to Borivili, saw carcasses of cattle as well as dogs floating away with the water. The animals, though natural swimmers, could not keep up with the speed of surging water.

Plastics and to an extent thermocol and the more fashionable stryofoam are definitely the bane of all problems, still we have been unable to stop its use. And we are not talking of only plastic bags, we have chocolate wrappers, bread wrappers, mineral water bottles, gutka packets et al to deal with. And not to forget our lifesaving injection syringes.

But I deduced there is another reason for the floods too. Lack of open grounds. This is purely my deduction, but our animal hospital has huge open spaces around it, and though our staff were scared of flooding when the rains started, they gradually realised that while the neighbouring areas became waterlogged, our ground had soaked up all the water through the 2 days. There were a couple of big puddles, but that was all. In fact, our staff were advised not to leave the hospital, so they spent the next 2 days there itself. Any more concretization and not only will the reflected heat kill all of us in the coming years, but this would not have been the only flooding in this century.

Nature is shouting out loud, now it is for us to hear and act.

Rainbow wishes to all (as Ashif would say)
Thane SPCA

I believe an important reasons for flash bag....which holds water flow and makes matter worse...The same plastic/ polythene bags that we dispose off every day....

Apart from being responsible for deaths of heavy number of the cities...which die as a result of swallowing plastic along with the food stuffs from kachra...Plastic also releases toxics during its decomposition....which may take upto 250 years or even more.....

The plastic if not recycled is the worst form of Garbage.....Burn it, Burry it, Dump it, or throw it in the sea......The plastic remains plastic....The non-biodegradable thing continues to harm us...

During the conditions of flash floods... the most important point is the out flow of water...and that is where the plastic/ polythene bags come into picture as a real monster.....The water outlet paths often starting with a grill.....(The doors with iron bars that we see on roads) are chocked up becoz of these bags.....they prevent the flow of water....and hence the conditions becomes worse...

Some 7-8 years back...during the floods in Surat - Gujarat...a mega plant producing cement...might have faced heavy loss due to the floods.....The water was rising quickly......authorities were worried....about what had happened to the well planned water outlets......When divers were sent in....they found....empty plastic cement bags had badly ...chocked the path way ....

Have a look yourself....while going in the trains...just take a look.....just look only for plastics and polythenes.....n think where it goes....when it rains....

A good initiative was taken by Nature club Surat some 3 years back...."Say no to Plastic"...we used to go with children...n distribute cloth bags...made from waste materials from the big textile industry in surat...with printed eco friendly messages on it...The group would stand near the vegetable market and offer the bags to the ladies coming there...n request them...not to use polythene bags....with a little green chat....

i personally do not use disposable plastic cups or plates....n..what ever plastic bags enter the house..specially during the to stay a long is reused,,,n reused....n reused....

The best policy remains....3 R s....Reduce, Reuse, Recycle...

Green wishes..


The reasons for death of buffalos in Flash flood..

The number is 1500+....

When the reason was being discussed among us..(.about 1500+ buffaloes that died in the flash goregaon-e ..Wal bhat road....)...i blamed it all on to the consumption of white blood...


Consider....way back in century......Most families had a cow or 2 with them...they were taken good care of...and the family inturn got milk....Killing of male calves must not have been prevalent...

U must have seen the videos of floodings in many villages...on many occasions i had seen people migrating to safe places with their livestock and also with stray animals like dogs....They used to consider their animals as an important part of their family...

Now...Due to the mass production of milk...for the flourishing dairy industry.......The buffaloes were brought into the large meet the demands....also to reduce the cost of was necessary to keep the buffaloes nearer to the city......Well than....where is the place for anybody in the city......The tabela owners had to settle into the worst places available....many of them thus settled on the sides of these nullahs...(which are disaster prone)....from where they would find water.....possibly to wash the tabelas and bathe their cattles.....and/ or an outlet for the sewage.....

The water was rising quickly that evening...the water level had risen to about 9 feet+ that night.....people hurried to save their lives....what about animals?.......each tabelas had 200- 300 upto 600 buffaloes....what even if they thought of releasing the chains.....where would they go....on the crowded streets....on roads...where traffic had jammed...vehicles had collapsed,,,,people were running every where.....The scared animals might have hurt humans.....and consider every thing was happening very fast......No body had any idea of such a flash flood......i don't believe that there is any reason for the tabela owners to make their animals die willingly....they would've tried their best...( forget compassion...think economy from their point of view...a buffalo costs not less than 30,000 ).....why would they finish their own business.....some one had even started releasing his cattle....i dont think they lived either...around 40 + buffaloes which were not chained ....were seen in the nullah.....

who is responsible than.....?????

People????...... unaware of the realities of cattle in dairy industries.....??? are they responsible??????

..So what if i and u had stopped milk??? we might have not been much successful in spreading the message much....??

Also consider the tabelas being at some distant place....would cattle be safe there??....God knows....Disasters have been taking lives matter how much we are developed...or prepared...Nature has its own express....that we are comparison...

This is what i felt when i was on the site...

God bless all...



I am opening my mail box after 3 days, as no eletricity till yesterday, ATM's not working, Banks closed, Schools & Collages are off dut record break Rains in Mumbai, Thane & Raigad districts. Trains are not working. Cell phones networks jam.

We at PAWS received pigeons, birds who became wet & shiewring. Other NGO's in Mumbai are picking-up dead bodies of cattles in Borivli, Andheri, Jogeshwari. All cattles are died on the spot becasue they were tied in Milk colony & water was full till first floor. Death of buffelows will go 300 above. It is stinking everywhere near those cattle shed.

People are stuck-up in trains, bus-stops & not able to go home due to
Easteren Express & Western Express Highway are under water, Many bridges are broken. Over 200 people died.

In our dombivli rly. station the 2 local trains are haulted since past 2 days & one express train is stuck-up since yesterday. People in trains are starving, so since today morning we all volunteers are providing biscuts, water & fruits to people. There is no water in trains even for toilet. All Jain & Social groups are operational now to provide food to nearst villages. How many animals died in near villages are unknown.

In Thane, 20 Cattle died due to eletric shock. My ThaneSPCA hospital was full with 2 feet high water, now cleaned. We asked vets not leave hospital for 2 days atleast. One pup died but except that all staff, animals & infrastructure is safe. Night Shift Vet. is resting at home. PAWS pigeons shelter was affected with water yesterday but we put-up tourpolin sheets.

Cities like Kalyan, Mumbra, Ulhasnagar, Badlapur Still under water. People are stuck-up in homes with no food, water, eletricity, telephones, transportation held-up. Nearst Barvi Dam in Thane District is full with water & now all gates are opened.

In new-Bombay, Panvel - Helicoptors are throwing food packets-miniral water in flooded areas.

My father is not came home since past 2 days but he is safe in Mumbai.

The Rains broke the records of past hundred years with 100mm in just 48hrs. Media stating that trains are working but it is not true. Nijamuddin express is haulted at our station since yesterday afternoon. One person fallen sick so we arranged doctor to check in trains.

We are tackling situation with our own way. Now rains are less may be mumbai will start working as usual from tomorrow?