Heavy monsoon showers lashed Lahore for hours, submerging various parts of the city and disrupting business this Tuesday. It seems that enjoying the rain has become a thing of the past. Now, whenever it rains, the fear of urban flooding looms over the city. Mud and inundated roads pose problems for pedestrians and commuters. In many parts of the city, the acidic rainwater mixes with sewerage from choked drains. Refuse and debris float on the surface of puddles, which remain stagnant until they become cesspools of disease.
In the face of climate change, the city is intermittently paralysed. Under the grey skies, the romanticism associated with Barsaat fades somewhere in the background and, as WASA employees scramble to pump water out of select settlements, the citizens are confronted with a chilling reminder that the cities they are inhabiting may be ill-prepared to face what’s coming ahead.