Kerala flood death toll 357, 11 districts still on alert

Barring Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam and Kasargode, the remaining 11 districts of Kerala continued to be on red alert following prediction of more rains.

The death toll due to rains and floods in Kerala has gone up to 357 this monsoon season, as 22 more deaths were reported on Saturday and red alert continued in 11 districts following prediction of more rains.

The death toll due to torrential rains since August 9 — the third spell during this year’s monsoon in the southern state — reached 194 with the casualties reported on Saturday in Ernakulam, Thrissur, Idukki, Pathanamthitta and Chengannur districts.

Barring Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam and Kasargode, the remaining 11 districts of Kerala continued to be on red alert following prediction of more rains.

The worst affected places include Aluva, Chalakudy, Chengannur, Alappuzha and Pathanamthitta, where massive rescue operations were on as scores of persons were rescued.

Media houses continued to be flooded with requests from friends and relatives of those stranded in affected areas.

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan held a review meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Kochi. In a memorandum submitted to the Centre, Vijayan said that the death toll in rain-related incidents since May 29 had climbed to 357. Over 3.53 lakh affected persons had been lodged in over 2,000 relief camps, he said.

Modi sanctioned Rs 500 crore to the flood-battered state, apart from Rs 100 crore announced earlier by the Centre on August 12, before returning to Delhi after an aerial survey of the affected areas.

Meanwhile, anger mounted across Kerala as coordination of rescue work went haywire due to the magnitude of calamity.

More fishing boats from various places reached the affected areas during the day.

The situation in Kozhikode, Malappuram, Palakkad and Wayanad inched towards comparative normalcy as rains slowed and water level receded, with many living in crowded relief camps awaiting return to their homes.

At several places in waterlogged areas, banks could not function normally since staff faied to report for duty due to the flooding.

Certain blockades on the Thrissur-Palakkad highway though were cleared for traffic. Army personnel worked hard to clear the roads to Munnar.