Kerela rains: Death toll mounts to 29; 54,000 rendered homeless


Thiruvananthapuram: The government of Kerala in an official statement on Friday evening has reported that the death toll due to the incessant rains witnessed in the state for the last three days has risen to 29.

Of the deaths, the government said 25 were caused due to landslides and four because of drowning.

As per the reports, two persons each have died from the districts of Palakkad and Ernakulam, 6 from Malappuram, 12 persons from Idukki, one person from Kozhikode, two persons from Kannur, and 4 persons from Wayanad.

As per the government’s statement over 53,500 people are living in the 439 relief camps opened across the state.

Earlier in July when rains lashed Alappuzha, people moved to the camps and are still reportedly living there. In the 68 relief camps set up in Ernakulam district, around 9,476 people belonging to 2,795 families live there.

The district of Malappuram is reported to have around 1,050 persons living in 13 relief camps and in the 10 relief camps in Idukki, there are over 530 persons.

There are over 848 people living in 18 relief camps in Kozhikode, 539 people in 10 camps in Kannur, 1029 people in 13 camps in Thrissur, 7367 people in 113 camps in Wayanad.

The heavy rains have caused severe damages to several houses — over 71 houses across the state have been partially damaged, while 29 houses have been destroyed completely.

According to the Indian Meteorological Department, heavy rains are expected to continue till Monday. A red alert has been issued in the Wayanad district till August 14 and in Idukki district, till August 13.

In the districts of Alappuzha, Kottayam, Ernakulam, Palakkad, Malappuram and Kozhikode, a red alert has been announced till August 11.

Five columns of Army were deployed in the state’s seven severely-hit northern districts, out of Kerala’s 14, to help evacuate people and to build makeshift bridges even as the Indian Navy’s southern command was put on alert after water level in Periyar river rose amid concern that parts of Wellingdon Island in Kochi could be inundated. Almost all 40-odd rivers in the state are in spate, officials said.

A red alert was issued for Idukki and its adjoining districts in view of the possibility of release of more water from the Idukki reservoir.

Tourists were barred from entering the hilly Idukki district after roads caved in at many places. Army soldiers were building small bridges to evacuate people stranded at various places in Kozhikode and Wayanad.

At least 50 tourists, including 24 foreigners, stranded at the Plum Judy resort at Munnar since Wednesday were rescued and taken to safer places, state Tourism minister Kadakampally Surendran said.

Kerala chief minister Panarayi Vijayan visited the flood monitoring cell and reviewed the functioning today.

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