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Waterlogging not only a traffic problem, hurts GDP too: Poll

 PTI |  2016-09-02 00:58:58.0  |  New Delhi

Waterlogging due to rains not only causes traffic snarls on roads but also brings the country’s GDP to a “standstill” as people get stuck in jam for hours, losing productive work hours, says a survey. As per the citizen engagement platform LocalCircles, 78 per cent Delhi citizens claimed that they lost most time due to waterlogging, leading to loss in work hours. This was followed by 68 per cent in Chennai, 66 per cent in Mumbai and 58 per cent in Bengaluru, says the survey conducted across the metro cities to understand the extent of the problem.

The government needs to realise that waterlogging has a direct impact on GDP and GSDP, it added. Every city has lakhs of commuters whose work life is hampered due to this waterlogging, LocalCircles said adding that in some of the cities like Bengaluru, the menace affects the software industry badly. 

“With white and blue collar workers stuck in traffic it is as if the whole GDP of the country has come to a standstill during this period,” it said. Seeking government attention towards the problem, LocalCircles said, “Such a massive disruption of work life of citizens due to mismanagement means that a much more integrated approach from the central government is needed on this issue.” Some of the solutions proposed by the citizens to address the waterlogging issue include ban on polythene bags, filling of pot holes, repairing of broken pumps in subways and underpasses and ban on throwing garbage in the drains, among others.

Meanwhile, in line with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision of “Blue Economy”, country’s ambitious Sagarmala project has identified 173 projects entailing huge investment of USD 60 billion (around Rs 4 lakh crore) by 2020, Union Minister Nitin Gadkari said.

This in turn would save India USD 6 billion per annum in logistics costs besides creating 10 million new jobs, the Road Transport, Highways and Shipping Minister said at an event in Singapore. “Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi says that Blue Chakra of India’s national flag represents the potential of the Blue Economy and my Ministry is committed to realising its full potential,” an official statement quoted Gadkari as saying.

He said the government has embarked on Sagarmala project, a model of port-led development for India which will establish new ports and modernise old ones to link coastal and island territories with the hinterland.

The project is based on four pillars - Optimising multi-modal transport to reduce cost of domestic cargo by leveraging inland waterways, minimising time and cost of export-import cargo logistics, lowering costs for bulk industries by locating them closer to the coast and improving export competitiveness by locating discrete manufacturing clusters near ports.

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