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Kerala flood: Death toll rises to 26 as heavy rains hit Kerala

Landslides in Kerala

Thiruvananthapuram: With incessant rain due to the southwest monsoon over the past 48 hours, 24 dams’ shutters being opened for releasing the excess water and landslides in many regions of the state, death of at least 26 people due to flash floods and landslides, Kerala is largely under the grip of flood lately.

Of the 26 people being killed in the Kerala flood, 11 are in Idukki district, 6 in Malappuram, 2 in Kozhikode and 1 in Wayanad. As stated by the Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, the situation in Kerala is  “very grim”.

The latest threat in the state currently is that the heavy rains for the past two days have increased the water level of Idukki reservoir, Asia’s highest arch dam rapidly. When on Thursday, the government decided to open one of the five shutters of the connected Cheruthoni dam by 50 cms, the immediate impact of the water released led them to delay the decision of opening the rest of the dams. The one shutter partially opened showed such threats to the people residing in the nearby areas, that the destruction of the rest of the dams’ water may create to the heavily populated towns, villages and big cities are unpredictable.

The current status is that in addition to the 24 dams already opened and that is to the first time in the history of the state, two more dams are opened now. the newly opened shutters of the Cheruthoni dam have caused a ban on tourists in Idukki. However, not only the ban, life has been difficult for the local people living in the areas that are underwater now. Four teams of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) consisting of 45 personnel each have already started their rescue mission.

the Central government has also sent an Inter-Ministerial Central Team for visiting flood-affected areas in Kerala. Army troops from Bengaluru are deployed to the rain-battered southern State. As an immediate action of relief to the families harassed due to the flood, Tamil Nadu government announces an immediate grant of Rs. 5 crore which will be provided from the Chief Minister’s Public Relief Fund to Kerala government.