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3 deaths in this open stormwater drain in a year | Noida News

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GREATER NOIDA: The 15-foot deep stormwater drain, which falls under the Yamuna Expressway and meets the service road going towards Dankaur, has seen three deaths within a year.
On Tuesday, police recovered the body of a law student of Amity University, Noida, from the drain. Deepraj (19) allegedly slipped into the drain from the service road on his way to the Gaur Yamuna City society, where he lived.
Last year, TOI reported that two Class 12 students, Mohit Sharma and Anjali Gupta, returning home from their school died while another suffered injuries on December 20, 2021, after their car hit the divider on Yamuna Expressway and fell into the drain in the Dankaur area.
As the news of the 19-year-old’s death spread, people from nearby villages gathered near the drain on Wednesday morning. They said they saw the drain earlier but did not realise it was as deep as 15 feet till it was drained out on Tuesday. “It took eight hours for officers to empty the drain. The drain looks choked, and it seems like water has not been flowing in it for a long time. You can see farmland on its sides; there is a wheat farm on one side and a paddy field on another. We did not know this drain ran near our society till this incident,” Raj Bahadur, the boy’s father.
Police earlier said that Deepraj might have been using his phone while walking and did not notice the drain. “He got down the bus at the Yamuna Gaur City bus stop and took the service road, which is a little slippery. The drain lies on one side of the service road,” a source told TOI on Tuesday.
The boy’s father said, “The administration should cover the drain because if anyone falls into this drain, that person will drown. The service lane lights also aren’t sufficient.”
Another resident of Gaur Yamuna City said that it is dangerous that the open drain lies so close to a residential area. “This township has mostly college students because many universities like Galgotias University stand nearby. But some of the service road lights have not been working for months. It is dangerous for anyone unaware of this drain to take this service road. Anyone can easily slip and fall into the drain like the 19-year-old,” the resident added.
A villager, who has a farm land near the drain, said, “Several animals have also fallen in the past. The authority needs to cover the drain because it seems very deep. The streetlights don’t illuminate the service road properly. We try to finish our work in the afternoon and reach home before sunset.”
A three- or four-foot-high retaining wall surrounds the drain, but that doesn’t seem to be doing anything. However, Arun Vir Singh, CEO of Yamuna Expressway Industrial Development Authority (YEIDA), said, “There is already a retaining wall to the drain. According to NGT guidelines, we can’t cover the drain, but we will investigate the spot and see if we can do anything.”
The NGT guidelines state stormwater drains should not have covers because the same could result in flooding and increase toxicity of the environment around the drain, turning it into a health hazard due to trapped gases. However, there are no restrictions on safety measures like building retaining walls or covers made of iron grilles and concrete slabs with gaps between them.

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