Eight holding ponds to get new lease of life

Written By Unknown on Jumat, 18 Januari 2013 | 22.23

MUMBAI: More than 30 years after they were created, eight of the 11 holding ponds in Navi Mumbai will be cleaned and maintained to prevent flooding in the city.

The non-maintenance of the ponds, located within the Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation (NMMC) limits, has resulted in ingress of saline water and growth of mangroves, silt/sludge accumulation, which has severely reduced the holding capacity.

The NMMC recently approached the Maharashtra Coastal Zone Management Authority (MCZMA) after the Bombay high court assured that it would approve a project in the mangrove areas provided it obtained clearance from the competent authority.

"The authority has allowed the clearing of mangroves in the centre of the ponds with the court's permission. Mangroves at the periphery are not to be destroyed or silt dumped on them. Also, the NMMC will have to ensure that the desilting does not result in land reclamation and mangrove plantation is undertaken,'' said an MCZMA official.

Navi Mumbai city was developed by CIDCO on low lying areas. At certain locations, creek water enters the city during high tide. In the 1980s to avoid flooding of the area during high tide, the storm water management of Navi Mumbai was planned on the lines of Netherlands, which is called the Dutch method.

At places where there are major ways for creek water to enter in the city, holding ponds were constructed as a flood control measure during heavy monsoon and from the high tide. However, these ponds were neither cleaned nor maintained which contributed to the heavy flooding in 1991. CIDCO, thereafter, appointed a committee comprising experts from irrigation, Central Water Power Research Station, CIDCO, to ascertain the reason for flooding. The committee recommended the cleaning and strengthening of the ponds.

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