Chennai Buzz: COVID cases on the rise | Rain batters city..and more!

Weekly recap: COVID cases are on the rise in Chennai. The city is also reeling from the effects of another heavy spell of rain.

COVID-19 cases on the uptick in Chennai

COVID cases in the city doubled  between the 29th and 30th of December. Chennai saw 397 new cases on the 30th. The Union government has urged the State government to amp up the number of daily tests and ensure strict adherence to COVID-19 safety protocols. 

Clusters of cases have emerged across the city, with two active clusters – at Rajiv Gandhi Government General Hospital and on Ashok Nagar 19th Street. Containment measures have been initiated with the street cordoned off after many positive tests. The civic body has set up three COVID care centres with a capacity of 500 beds for treatment and isolation. 

Source: The Times of India | Deccan Chronicle

Containment zones across the city have been demarcated by the Chennai Corporation. Pic: Alby John/Twitter

New Year curbs across Chennai

In the aftermath of the steep rise in COVID-19 cases in the city, temporary restrictions were put into effect on New Year’s eve in Chennai. Vehicular movement was banned across the city from midnight until 5 am on January 1. Checking was carried out by the city police on all arterial roads. Residents had been advised to stay indoors past midnight and step out only in case of emergency. 

Around 450 checkpoints have been established with 18,000 police personnel on duty. CCTV cameras will be used to monitor movement and violators will be penalised. Public spaces such as the city’s beaches have also been cordoned off to prevent large gatherings. 

Source: The Times of India

Read more: Four recommended steps for a flood-proof Chennai

City sees sudden, heavy spell of rains

Chennai received heavy rainfall from a sudden, prolonged downpour on December 30. With many stations across the city crossing 200 mm of rainfall, the spell added to this year’s tally. The total quantum of rainfall received surpassed 2015 to become the third highest rainfall received in a year after 2005 and 1996. 

The city saw gridlocks as traffic came to a standstill. Subways and roads were closed off after water-stagnation. Chennai Metro saw a rise in the number of passengers due to the rains. Three deaths due to electrocution also took place in Mylapore, Otteri and Pulianthope. 

The IMD predicted more rains on January 1 after which wet weather is expected to taper off. Schools and colleges have been shut and a red alert has been issued for four districts including Chennai.

Source: The Hindu | Times of India | Scroll

Chennai to get 28 new parks

The Greater Chennai Corporation plans to build an additional 28 parks in the city. At present 54 parks are currently under development. The parks are set to come up in Manali, Madhavaram, Sholinganallur and Perungudi.  Eight playgrounds are also being developed at present. The parks will have less than 15% concrete structures. The brief is for the area to have more trees and greenery. The parks could also act as a flood mitigation tool. The parks have been designated based on demand and land availability.

Source: The Times of India

Read more: All that’s wrong with stormwater drains in Chennai and how to fix them

Civic body to fix missing links in stormwater drains

A work order has been issued for 144 locations where the civic body is looking to plug any gaps in the city’s stormwater drain network. The project is estimated to cost Rs 120 crore. Areas with a history of waterlogging and those that have been affected by the recent rain have been identified as part of the exercise.

A total of 45 kilometres will be added to the stormwater drain network on completion of the work. Some of the old drains will also be replaced. Work will be carried out in Royapuram, Tondiarpet, Anna Nagar, Thiru Vi Ka Nagar, Teynampet, Kodambakkam and Adyar. Funding for the project will come from the World Bank.

Source: The New Indian Express | The Hindu

[Compiled by Aruna Natarajan]

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  1. Lakshmi nilakantan says:

    A very good initiative of adding new parks. Adding greenery is an essential act for public well being. Green cover ( the color green is associated with stress free and calm human minds ) in turn make citizens healthy. However , citizens cooperation, understanding and involvement is important.
    Besides, Rainwater drains should be used only for rainwater harvesting people should at least after all these flooding, stop connecting illegal sewerage drains. As a saying goes β€œ what goes in comes back to us”.
    Judicious use of rainwater drains should alleviate future flooding.

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