Kerala Floods: Death Toll Rises To 60, Over 2 Lakh Moved To Relief Camps
While rains abated in God’s Own Country on Sunday, the death toll in the Kerala floods rose to 60 with over 2.27 lakh people moved to relief camps across the state.
Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, who held a meeting with senior officials on Sunday to review the Kerala floods situation, said the death toll in rain-related incidents since Aug. 8 has touched 60. About 2.27 lakh people have been shifted to 1,551 relief camps, he said.
Though the rains have subsided, people should remain vigilant, he added. "There is respite from the rains today in the hills. But we need to be cautious. It's not easy to escape from landslides," said the chief minister.
Eight people are still missing in Wayanad’s Puthumala, which was hit by a landslide on Aug. 8, and search operations are on for them.
Meanwhile, India Meteorological Department has issued a red alert for rains in three districts—Kannur, Kasaragod and Wayanad—of Kerala.
Vadakara in Kozhikode districts recorded 21 cm of rainfall, the highest in the state as of 8:30 am on Sunday, followed by Kodungallur in Thrissur (19.9 cm) and Perinthalmanna in Malappuram (13.8), IMD said.
The water level in major dams was not a cause of worry as of now, said Vijayan, as the Idukki Dam, one of the biggest in Kerala, is just 36.61 percent full.
Rahul Gandhi To Visit Wayanad
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi began his Kerala visit on Sunday to review the flood situation in his Wayanad Lok Sabha constituency.
Accompanied by Congress General Secretary KC Venugopal, Gandhi arrived at the Karipur airport near Kozhikode on Sunday afternoon.
He would later visit some rain-hit places in the neighbouring Mallapuram district, three assembly segments of which form part of Wayanad constituency, party sources said.
Gandhi has spoken with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, the District Collector of Wayanad and Congress workers in the state regarding the flood situation in his constituency.
Flight, Train Services
The Abu Dhabi-Kochi Indigo flight landed at around 12:15 pm on Sunday, marking the resumption of operations, a Cochin International Airport Limited official said.
The Southern Railway on Sunday fully cancelled 10 trains, including the Mangaluru-Thiruvananthapuram Express, Maveli Express, Malabar Express, Kannur-Ernakulam Intercity Express, Ernakulam-Bengaluru Intercity express and four passengers.
Seven trains have been paritally cancelled and two trains diverted, it announced.
Various agencies, including the Indian Army, Indian Navy, Coast Guard, the National Disaster Response Force, local police, volunteers and fishermen are involved in the rescue operations at various places.
This is the second consecutive year that the floods and landslides have ravaged Kerala, which is yet to recover from the deluge that had claimed over 400 lives last year and rendered lakhs homeless.