Loha pul| Yamuna river
Old Yamuna bridge is also known as Loha Pul | Manisha Mondal/ThePrint
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Many, including mediapersons, are flocking to Old Yamuna Bridge, which has been made out of bounds for traffic in the wake of a flood warning.

New Delhi: Every year during the monsoon, the Yamuna banks in the national capital turn into ‘tourist spots’, with onlookers flocking there to click pictures of families being evacuated from the flooded riverbed.

This season has been no different. Authorities had announced that the river crossed the danger mark of 204 m as on 28 July, issuing warnings to people to move out of the low-lying areas. The water level touched 206.03 m Tuesday morning.

Huts in the low-lying areas on the eastern bank have been evacuated | Manisha Mondal

Although dozens of families of farmers, cattle grazers, labourers who live illegally on the floodplains are shifting to higher grounds now, they are likely to return to the same area once the floodwaters recede, say locals.

The evacuation that comes every monsoon as become a part of the dwellers’ lives | Manisha Mondal

“This happens every year. The water increases a bit and then recedes. We don’t want to move out but we have no other option. We are used to this yearly ritual,” says Gayatri, who lives with her family near the Old Yamuna Bridge (Loha Pul) that has been made out of bounds for traffic in the wake of the flood warning.

The police find it difficult to control visitors who sometimes put themselves in danger while clicking pictures or selfies | Manisha Mondal

Built more than a century ago, the bridge has become a favourite spot for mediapersons and citizens to get a view of the Yamuna in full spate.


Also read: Two MoUs signed 2 years apart, but there’s still no Yamuna sewage treatment plant in sight


For the flood-affected, this sudden media glare does not come as a surprise. They claim this happens every year during the monsoon.

River Yamuna has swollen up in the last 5 years and touched its highest level 206 m | Manisha Mondal

Even the police find it difficult to control the onlookers who sometimes put themselves in danger while trying to click pictures or selfies.

Political parties, with their usual blame game, are also an integral part of this annual ritual. Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal has already tweeted explaining how his government is working to helping these people.

Union minister Harsh Vardhan, on the other hand, has lambasted the “insensitive” AAP government, saying, “As the river is rising above danger mark due to incessant rains, no advance planning in place, not enough shelter for people caught up in flood waters”. (sic)


Also read: 90% of plastic polluting our oceans comes from 8 Asian rivers


 

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  1. “People along the #Yamuna in Delhi are at the mercy of an insensitive government,” says a ‘sensitive’ BJP MP. knowing all the time that the MCD, supposed to clear away the silt and garbage from the banks of the water logged river is under the BJP. Half of it flows right back into the river.

    The flooding of the Yamuna has been an ongoing problem since years and neither the BJP nor the Congress have addressed the issue.

    As far back as July 2017, the AAP proposed super suckers to deal with it. But guess who controls the officers in charge of funding projects like these? IAS officers who are under the LG who is elected by the said ‘sensitive’ BJP.

    Incidentally, to find out what the AAP has done in its 3 years in power in Delhi – read the article titled, “MEETING OF APEX COMMITTEE TO REVIEW FLOOD CONTROL MEASURES HELD AT SECRETARIAT” on their website, aamaadmiparty dot org. There is no blame game – just good, common sense measures and co-operation between various agencies. That’s how a government operates if their concern for the people is genuine.

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