Kerala has taken unprecedented step of opening the gates of 25 water reservoirs
Thiruvananthapuram: Union home minister Rajnath Singh said on Sunday that Kerala is facing an "unprecedented crisis" and announced a relief of Rs 100 crore for the state, which is grappling with devastating landslides and floods caused by unprecedented rain. The state government said the damage caused is to the tune of Rs 8,000 crore. Over the last six days, 39 people died in the state and 8 of its 14 districts are on high alert. More than 60,000 people had to be evacuated to relief camps. The meteorological department said the heavy rains are expected to continue till the Independence Day.
Here are the top 10 updates in this big story:
- "Today we conducted an aerial survey of flood affected areas, and the Chief Minister and I reached the conclusion that the situation is very serious in Kerala due to floods," Union Minister Rajnath Singh said. "I would like to assure the state government that all sorts of support will be provided by the central government".
- Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan thanked Mr Singh for the visit and sought Rs 1,200 crore for immediate relief and rehabilitation. Early assessment showed the loss because of the disaster was about Rs 8,300 crore, he said.
- Water level in Idukki dam, the biggest arch dam in Asia, which was opened after a 26-year gap last week, marginally declined to 2399.16 feet at 10 am on Sunday after hovering close to its maximum of 2,403 feet, officials said.Last week, the state took the unprecedented step of opening the gates of 25 water reservoirs to prevent potentially disastrous breaches.
- "There was no rain in the catchment areas of major reservoirs today," news agency Reuters quoted PH Kurian, a top government official, as saying. He, however, added that the alert and preparedness will continue till August 15.
- There are warnings of floods in low-lying coastal areas and fishermen have been warned not to venture into the sea.
- Ten columns of Army, a unit of Madras Regiment along with personnel of Navy, Air Force and 14 teams of the National Disaster Relief Force, are engaged in relief and rescue operations in badly-hit districts -- Thrissur, Ernakulam, Alappuzha, Wayand, Kozhikode and Idukki.
- Both Thrissur and Ernakulam districts were flooded after nearly 7.50 lakh litres of water per second was discharged from the Idukki dam on the Periyar river. Crops over more than a thousand hectares have been damaged in the hilly Wayanand district.
- Nearly 20,000 houses and at least 10,000 km of roads have also been damaged in the floods.
- Nearly 10,000 people have been sent to relief camps in Thrissur and Ernakulam districts after five floodgates were opened on the Idukki dam. The state, which has 44 rivers, witnessed its worst floods in 1924 following torrential rains.
- Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan has announced a compensation of Rs. 4 lakh to families of the deceased and an equal amount for those who lost their homes. Those who have lost their land and home, will get a compensation of up to Rs. 10 lakh.
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