Heavy rain turned many parts of the capital into swamps yesterday, paralysing normal life and creating a traffic chaos.
Thoroughfares, lanes and bylanes were partially or fully submerged in those areas. At places, human waste and dirt came out of sewers.
The Met office said the rain, caused by active monsoon, started Thursday noon and continued with intervals. It is likely to rain in the city in the 48 hours.
The office recorded 114mm rain between 6:00am Thursday and 6:00pm yesterday in Dhaka, said meteorologist Abdur Rahman.
City planners say it is the inadequate storm-water drainage system, not the rain, that caused the waterlogging.
Yesterday was a weekend and those who went out of their homes for various works found themselves in deep trouble.
Some of them were seen waiting for public transport in rain while others were wading through ankle-deep or knee-deep filthy waters.
The Daily Star correspondents found roads in Rajarbagh, Paltan, Nayapaltan, Motijheel, Karwan Bazar, Mirpur Road, Tejturibazar, Manipuri Para, Kazipara, Senpara, Indira Rood areas and many alleys in old Dhaka inundated. In some of places, the water receded in the afternoon when rain stopped.
At places, buses, cars and three-wheelers haphazardly inched forward throughout the day. Many of the vehicles broke down being stuck in water.
Traffic policemen, who were manning some important intersections, seemed helpless.
The sufferings of the people worsened due to road renovation and construction works of different projects, including Metro Rail, in different parts of the city.
On the other hand, rickshaw-puller charged high even for a very short distance, cashing in on the situation.
Talking to The Daily Star, Rahman Mia, a service holder, said failing to get any bus, he hired a CNG-run auto-rickshaw from Mirpur-10 to attend a wedding in Dhanmondi.
However, the auto-rickshaw broke down in Kazipara area after the vehicle remained stranded in water for some time.
“I got down in the murky water and hired a rickshaw which took me to Agargaon. From there, I hired another auto-rickshaw and reached the wedding venue in that. I had to spent Tk 500 in total,” he said, adding that the usual fare would be Tk 200-250.
Many city dwellers, using Rokeya Sarani in Kazipara, Senpara where the space of the street has shrunk due to the construction of Metro Rail Project, and Manik Miah Avenue near Dhanmondi-27, had similar experiences.
“This is how we live in the capital. Only a few hours of rain and there is water everywhere,” said a frustrated Yousuf Hossain, who got drenched after coming out of his home in Dhanmondi to buy some medicines.
“This says all about the drainage system of Dhaka,” added the man while wading through a flooded road.
Habibur Rahman, who lives in Farmgate area, said he had to pay Tk 800 to hire a car to go to Kalyanpur for an emergency work. “The water stinks. The roads are flooded whenever it rains for a while,” he said.
Many shop-keepers said their businesses were hit hard by the waterlogging.
“Customers don’t come unless it’s an absolute emergency,” said Akib Javed, who owns a grocery shop in Indira Road area.
Amzad Hossain, a resident of Nazimuddin Road, said, “We’ve been facing the problem [waterlogging] during monsoon every year. The authorities had promised us of solving it, but it has not happened yet.”
“We want a solution. We can’t bear it anymore,” he added.