Mumbai, July 10 (IANS) Road and rail traffic was disrupted as heavy rains continued to batter Mumbai, its surroundings areas and large parts of Maharashtra for the fourth consecutive day on Tuesday, officials said.
Mumbai’s lifeline, the Western Railway (WR) and Central Railway (CR) suburban trains, were running late by 15-20 minutes due to waterlogged tracks, causing major delays to the morning commuters.
WR services on the critical Vasai-Virar sector were cancelled. Services operated only between Churchgate and Vasai.
Several inbound or outbound long-distance trains were either cancelled, terminated en route or diverted on the Mumbai-Gujarat and Mumbai-New Delhi sectors.
WR spokesman G. Mahapurkar said food packets and water was distributed to thousands of stranded passengers at various stations on the network and efforts were on to restore services after the waters receded.
As a precaution, Education Minister Vinod Tawde on Tuesday advised all school and college principals to monitor the rainfall position in their areas and declare a holiday if necessary for the second consecutive day.
According to the IMD, Mumbai recorded 165.8 mm rains so far this morning whereas the suburbs received 184.3 mm. More rains were forecast for the next couple of days.
In the past 21 days, the city has received nearly 60 per cent of its average seasonal total rains, said the BrihanMumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC).
Areas like Dahisar, Borivali, Malad, Jogeshwari, Andheri, Santacruz, Mahim, Kurla, Parel, Dadar, Chembur, King Circle, Sion, Wadala, Masjid Bunder, Ghatkopar, Powai, Bhandup and others experienced heavy waterlogging, impeding traffic and pedestrian movement.
Massive traffic snarls were witnessed on the Eastern Express Highway, Western Express Highway and the Eastern Freeway.
Besides Mumbai, the adjoining districts of Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR) like Thane, Palghar and Raigad also got heavy rains. Many villages and towns were flooded or waterlogged since Monday night.
After heavy rains, several big and small rivers, streams and ponds in the tourist hotspots like Sanjay Gandhi National Park, Tungareshwar Wildlife Sanctuary, Karnala Bird Sanctuary, Tansa Forest Sanctuary and Yeoor Hills besides Vaitarna, Surya and Ulhas rivers overflowed.
Teams of NDRF, SDRF, Fire Brigades and other agencies were on high alert in Mumbai and all other districts.