‘Misery and devastation’: Indian flood kills 67 in tourist hotspot

16 August, 2018, 11:21 | Author: Clarence Schmidt
  • Kerala rains,Kerala floods,Mullaperiyar

Meanwhile, the operations at Cochin International Airport have been suspended till Saturday 2 pm after flood water submerged the runway.

Torrential monsoon rains have disrupted air and train services in the southern Indian state of Kerala, where flooding, landslides and bridge collapses have killed more than 40 people in the past week, officials said on Wednesday. The balance available in the State Disaster Relief Fund (SDRF) account as on April 1, 2018 as reported by the state Accountant General Rs 348.45 crore, another home ministry said.

"The situation is bad in many parts of the state and the number (of deaths) will likely increase", a senior official from the Kerala State Disaster Management Authority said. More than 81 people were rescued yesterday and many of them were also provided with food and shelter by setting up a rescue camp. The prime minister has assured all help, it said.

Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan demanded the intervention of Tamil Nadu CM Palaniswami to reduce the water level of Mullaperiyar Dam to 139 ft.

"Our state is in the midst of an unprecedented flood havoc", Vijayan said earlier this week.

Though initially 13 shutters of the dam were opened early by 4.30 am, three were closed and discharge through the spillway reduced to 3,480 cusecs.

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan while addressing the media here informed that the state is witnessing such a situation for the first time.

The weather office also issued warning saying that heavy rain accompanied with gusty winds, speed reaching 60 kmph, is expected in most of the districts of Kerala.

People also have been asked to avoid the Sabarimala hill shrine as the water level in the nearby rain-fed Pampa River was rising.

Many families were feared trapped in their homes in places like Kadunagalloor, Thottakattukara, Karumalloor, Thuruthu, Desom, Kalady, Companypady, Manjali, Veliyathunad, Malikampeedika, Paravoor Kavala, Chowara, Eloor North Paravur, etc. Search and rescue operations are going on full throttle in the district. The water level in Mullaperiyar Dam now stands at 142 ft. Situation so grim that even relief camps are flooded. "The neighbouring states have been helping us and we need their help in the future too", added the chief minister.

The suspension of operations at Cochin International Airport will continue till 2pm on Saturday (August 18), the airport's managing director said.

In fact, due to flooding and landslips, several trains at the Thiruvananthapuram-Nagarcoil route have been cancelled.

Bus services to Kochi were also affected after National Highways connecting the city submerged in Kalamassery area, officials said.



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