Cyclone Ockhi: Over 531 fishermen rescued off Kerala and Lakshadweep coasts
Over 531 fishermen rescued off Kerala, Lakshadweep coasts; relatives of missing fishermen block national highway for five hours to demand intensified searches
Family members of 1,000 fishermen from the Kanyakumari district demanded on Saturday that aerial searches and rescue operations be launched to trace the missing men. Blocking the national highway for almost five hours, the protesters demanded better relief and rescue measures. Several boats appear to have capsized due to heavy winds and rain after the cyclone made landfall in the state and neighbouring Kerala on Thursday.
Locals try to catch fish as water level in rivers increased following heavy rain in the Kanyakumari region on Saturday
Thiruvananthapuram district Collector S Vasuki said, "Around 102 fishermen from the state had gone to the sea. They are yet to reach home. The search operations now are aimed towards the Alappuzha area, as the boats would have run out of fuel. It's likely that they might be drifting according to the wind direction."
Meanwhile, the Kerala government has decided to urge the Centre to declare Cyclone Ockhi, which left a trail of destruction in the state, as a national calamity.
There is a huge demand for generator sets as power supply is yet to be restored by the state electricity board, following the Ockhi devastation. pics/PTI
Over 500 rescued
As many as 531 fishermen, stranded in the choppy waters off the Kerala and the Lakshadweep coasts have been rescued, Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan said on Saturday.
Naval personnel bring back stranded fisherman in Kerala
Navy, Coast Guard help
The Indian Navy and the Coast Guard continued search for missing fishermen using ships, dornier aircraft and helicopters in the "rough sea" off Kerala and Lakshadweep.
Children receive food and relief material at a TN relief camp
"While INS Nireekshak, INS Jamuna and INS Sagardhwani are continuing search and rescue operations along the coast off Vizhinjam and Kollam, INS Shardul and INS Sharda are heading towards Lakshadweep," a defence spokesman said.
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The 'very severe' cyclonic storm Ockhi is likely to continue to move west-northwestwards across Lakshadweep islands during the next 24 hours and then recurve northeastwards in the subsequent 48 hours, a Met department bulletin said.