Screaming and wailing echoed in the air mostly from parts of the old city on a fateful morning of October 18 as social media platforms especially whatsapp accounts flooded with devastating reports coupled with heart wrenching visuals revealing the havoc caused by the furious flood. The furious flood ravaged half part of the city the same month of October last year, more precisely the horrific days between 10-18 October.
The proximate cause of last year’s flood fury and the subsequent devastation was breaching of bunds at several water bodies from Shamshabad to Gurram Cheruvu at Balapur as the lakes were crammed and developed breaches due to incessant rains recorded during last week of September and early October in 2020.
Among the primary water bodies that received breaches due to incessant rains include Brahmana Kunta, Brahman Cheruvu, Appa Cheruvu, Palle Cheruvu, Mamidla Kunta, Erra Kunta and Gurram Cheruvu at the stretch. The flood fury that unleashed the trail of destruction between 10 to 18 October also claimed 60 to 80 lives besides heavy loss of public and private properties.
Later the officials found 110 out of a total 192 lakes received damages. As per the official data out of 192 tanks, a total of 14 have developed breaches while another six are in critical stages. In 27 tanks damage was caused to their sluice and bunds at 32 places while weirs have received damages in 31 water bodies.
Though the snowball effect of the flood started wrecking havoc around the water bodies mainly at Gagan Pahad, Kattedan, Mailardevpally, Jalpally and Bandlaguda area from October 10 itself, the obvious picture of devastation was appeared only in the morning of October 18 as the flood managed to clampdown the bund of Gurram Cheruvu at Balapur the last in the row before culminating at Musi River. The bund breached the intervening night of October 17 and 18 around 1.30 am unable to put up with the intensity of the inflows travelling through the course of water bodies from upward directions.
The ferocious inflows – flowing through the water bodies on its course all the way from Shankarpally to Gurram Cheruvu during last week of September and early October last year had left a trail of destruction in areas abutting to lakes on the eastern side while the citizens in rest of the areas left completely shell-shocked watching the images and videos with a full view of devastation on October 18.
It is when the administration was busy in ascertaining the impact of the devastation caused by Appa Cheruvu at Gagan Pahad – that received a breach unable to put up with the heavy inflows from upstream lakes just a few days ahead, the reports of breached Gurram Cheruvu lake at Balapur dragged the city’s attention towards another round of destruction in several other colonies in Bandlaguda, Jalpally and and Balapur areas.
Tragic Images started pouring in from areas such as Hafiz Baba Nagar, Al-Jubail Colony Hashamabad, Al Saroor Nagar, Ali Nagar, Ghazi-e-Millat Colony, , Omer Colony, Gulshan-e-Iqbal Colony, Phool Bagh, Aaliya Garden, Nabeel Colony, Saif Colony, Royal Colony, Sayeed Colony, Ali Colony and Osman Nagar.
Although life was recovered in most of the areas in following months, the trials and tribulations were not yet over for the families in the Osman Nagar area which remained under water for two years on the trot. Accounts of untold misery are still appearing from the watery grave of Osman Nagar from where most of the families flocked to other safest areas of the city.
Though the tragedy attributed to the breaches of bunds in over 100 water bodies from Shankarpally to Gurram Cheruvu, the encroachments over lakes and trampling down of water curse of the Firangi Nala was found to be the proximate cause that proved as a harbinger of doom for the dwellers residing around the water bodies.