Kerala under water: State on high alert as floods kill 37, 31k in rescue camps

Aug 12, 2018, 11:15 IST | Agencies

31K in rescue camps; compensations announced for victims; heavy rain likely to continue till Aug 15

Kerala under water: State on high alert as floods kill 37, 31k in rescue camps
Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan conducted an aerial survey of the flood-affected areas yesterday. Pics/AFP, PTI

More than half of the 14 districts in Kerala have been put on high alert, officials said on Saturday, as the death toll from one of the worst floods in the southern state reached 37.

Torrential rains and landslides have ravaged farmlands and prompted massive evacuation efforts in Kerala. Crops on 2,547.66 acres have been damaged and 31,000 people have been forced to take shelter in rescue camps, according to the Kerala State Disaster Management Authority's (KSDMA) control room in the state capital. A senior official there said eight districts had been put on varying levels of high alert.

Kerala Floods

Another government official previously said that crop worth R342 crore had been destroyed by rains since their onset on May 29. PH Kurian, KSDMA's chief and a top state bureaucrat, said rains had eased.

"We will continue our alert and preparedness till August 15," Kurian said. Kerala authorities have taken the unprecedented step of opening the gates of 25 water reservoirs to prevent potentially disastrous breaches.

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan
Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan

CM makes personal contribution of Rs 1L
Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan has made a personal contribution of R1 lakh to the Chief Minister's Distress Relief Fund. Urging everyone to contribute to relief efforts, he said in a Facebook post that rebuilding the affected areas is going to be an arduous task.

RaGa writes to PM
New Delhi: As torrential rains continue to lash Kerala, Congress President Rahul Gandhi on Saturday wrote a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi apprising him of the situation and urging the latter to release sufficient funds immediately to the Kerala government for their relief and rehabilitation efforts.

Compensation for flood victims
The Kerala government said that the victims' families will receive compensation of R4 lakh each. The CM also directed the authorities to disburse cash compensation of R10 lakh each to those who suffered damages to their homes or farms.

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