Heavy rains lash Maharashtra, Mumbai’s lakes full

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Mumbai, Sep 21 (IANS) Heavy rains continue to lash large parts of Maharashtra, with many areas recording three-digit (in millimetres) rainfall, including Mumbai and coastal districts, officials said here on Wednesday.

Similar rainy weather has been forecast over the next three-four days across most parts of the state, even as monsoon enters the petering-out phase.

Mumbai and surroundings were plagued by heavy traffic jams on the Eastern Express Highway and Western Express Highway, the east-west links, suburban and arterial roads, as well as those connecting Mumbai with the mainland in Thane and Raigad.

In some parts of Thane and Palghar, local schools and colleges remained shut due to waterlogging and stalled vehicular traffic even as the district authorities remained in a state of high alert for any natural disaster.

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In a major relief for the 17 million Mumbaikars, all the lakes supplying drinking water to the metropolis are full. The water in Tulsi, Vehar, Tansa, Bhatsa, Modak Sagar, Upper Vaitarna and Middle Vaitarna water bodies stands at more than 14,47,300 million litres.

Last year, deficit rain led to water storage of 11,07,400 million litres, which resulted in sharp water cuts during the peak demand in summer months.

In the last 24 hours, the Indian Meteorological Department said, Mumbai recorded 180 mm average rain, with the suburbs accounting for 142.6 mm and the rest of the city, till 9 p.m. on Wednesday.

Normal life was severely hit in Palghar district which recorded 529 mm rainfall till Wednesday morning.

The other prominent areas with more than 20 mm rain in the past 24 hours include Raigad, Ratnagiri, Jalgaon, Mahabaleshwar, Amravati and others.

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Heavy spells of rains have been forecast for the next 3-4 days till Sunday, especially in the coastal areas where fishermen have been warned against venturing out into the Arabian Sea due to strong winds.

“Heavy to very heavy rains are expected in Konkan, Maratha, central Maharashtra and eastern Maharashtra’s Vidarbha region over the next 24-48 hours,” head of State Disaster Management Authorit R.V. Sharma said.

The monsoon revival is attributed to the formation of a new weather system in west-central Bay of Bengal, which is presently prevalent over northwest Bay of Bengal, coastal areas of south Odisha and northern Andhra Pradesh.

According to Skymet Weather, the system is moving westwards quickly and expected to come close to Konkan and Goa regions soon.

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