Mumbai News

Spirit of Mumbai tired and beaten – Mumbai Mirror

High tide touching 4.41 meters and cyclone-like winds combine with season’s heaviest rain to pummel Mumbai. Colaba recorded 229.6 mm and Santacruz 65.8 mm of rain in just nine hours.

As he slumped on the road divider at King Circle, soaked shoes in hand, a dripping wet kerchief covering his head, and tears welling up in his eyes, Ashok Singh, 45, a Bhendi Bazaar vegetable vendor, personified Mumbai on Wednesday – tired and beaten.

As the season’s heaviest rain and cyclonelike winds pummelled Mumbai, bringing life to a standstill and shuttering down businesses once again, the question that Singh and the rest of the city seemed to be asking was – when will this ordeal end?

It was a day when Mumbai was scheduled to kick back to life after being laid low by Covid-19 for four months. Malls were to reopen and restrictions on shops were supposed to be eased. But what it got instead was a smack in the face – nearly the entire city was flooded, trains remained marooned on tracks and buses and cars submerged on roads, rain water entered hospitals and Covid centres and the iconic BSE signage on the roof of the Bombay Stock Exchange building in Fort collapsed – like the country’s financial capital was ready to throw in the towel.

Just like many others in the city, Singh, a resident of Kurla and a father of two, had opened his business on Wednesday after being driven to penury during the lockdown — one of his two daughters lost her job and the family exhausted all its savings. But within hours the street outside the shop was flooded and he had no option but to pull down the shutters and start a long, lonely trek home. When this correspondent last spoke to him around 8 pm, Singh was yet to reach home.

The forecast for Thursday, the weather bureau said, was continuation of “intense rain” and the advisory from local authorities remained the same – stay home. But what Mumbaikars could well do with is a forecast for the rest of the year – is there an end to this ‘annus horribilis’?

Ashok Singh, 45, a Bhendi Bazaar vegetable vendor, who opened his shop for the first time in four months on Wednesday but was forced to shut it because of flooding, burst into tears at King Circle as he walked back to his house in Kurla