Kerala gets temporary relief from rain on Monday
Thiruvananthapuram, Aug 12 (IANS) The rains appear to have reduced drastically on Monday in Kerala, giving a sigh of relief to those engaged in rescue operations.
The death toll according to the Kerala government, stood at 77, as 2.87 lakhs people are currently in 1654 camps across the state.
Meanwhile, with the weather turning sunny on Monday, various rescue teams are working hard in the worst-affected areas of Meppadi in Wayanad and Kavalapara in Malappuram.
State Minister of Higher Education K. T. Jaleel, who reached Kavalapara on Monday to oversee the rescue operations, said that whatever is humanely possible is being done to recover the remaining bodies, that are suspected to be lying under the mud.
"Initially it was said 63 people in this area are missing, but later four of them were traced to their relatives' houses. Of the remaining 59, till now 14 bodies have been recovered. Today we have got more heavy earth moving equipments which will be engaged in recovering all the remaining bodies. No efforts will be spared at all," assured Jaleel.
The maximum deaths - 18 - were reported from Wayanad, while Malappuram, Palakkad, Idukki, and Kozhikode have also reported casualties.
The meteorological department said that there is no red alert in any district on Monday, but more rains are predicted in the coming three days.
"Starting tomorrow, rains will be heavy in Alappuzha, Ernakulam and Idukki till Wednesday, while on Thursday it's going to be isolated rains," said the IMD official, here.
Like in the past few days, Monday also saw a few long distance trains being cancelled for the day, but more number of trains that were cancelled earlier have been restored.
Meanwhile, Alappuzha district, which witnessed the worst ever floods last year, has more than 10,000 people in relief camps this year as several low lying areas are submerged due to heavy rains.
Wayanad Congress MP Rahul Gandhi, who has been touring his constituency since Sunday, has assured all help to the people who are suffering.
"We are all with you in this hour of crisis and I call upon not just Congress workers, but all the people to work to ease the sufferings of the people. You don't have to worry about your future as we will help you rebuild your lives," said Gandhi while addressing a relief camp at Thiruvampady.
According to preliminary estimates given by State Agriculture Minister V. S. Sunil Kumar, more than 18,000 hectares of various agricultural crops have affected about 81,000 farmers and the total estimated loss as of now stands above Rs 800 crore.