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Meet Kanta Murti, the woman who guarded a manhole and saved hundreds of lives as heavy rains flooded Mumbai

Kanta lives on footpath and sells flowers to support education of her three daughters. Her five other kids are married and she is the sole bread-winner of her family.

As torrential rains in Mumbai continues to pummel the financial capital of the country, inundating various parts of the city, Kanta Murti, a 50-year-old pavement dweller took it upon herself to avert the dangers emanating from the rising levels of water in the Matunga suburb of the city.

Realising that the water levels in Matunga were crossing dangerous mark, Murti forced open a manhole on Tulsi Pipe Road in Matunga West to let out the flowing waters to recede. However, while all her savings and tent were washed away in the rolling rains, she stood there for 7 hours to warn the motorists and vehicles about the open manhole. The video of Murti’s bravery had gone viral on the Internet.

Kala, along with her fellow footpath dwellers spent an anxious night on August 3 as the water continued to touch alarming levels. By next morning, the road and the footpath were deluged in more than 3 ft of water. A few motorbikes that were parked on the road had begun to float away. Worried that BMC would not turn up to drain the water, Kanta herself opened the manhole and stood there guarding it to warn the oncoming motorists.

Speaking to the media, Kanta said, “I wrenched open the manhole drain water & stood there to warn vehicles. BMC officials came later and chided me for it.”

Kanta lives on footpath and sells flowers to support education of her three daughters. Her five other kids are married and she is the sole bread-winner of her family. Kanta’s husband is differently-abled after being paralysed in a tragic railway accident.

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Staff reporter at OpIndia

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