Situation in Kerala very serious, says Rajnath Singh; releases additional relief of Rs 100 crore

The Union Home Minister said that the state has witnessed the worst ever situation since 1924 and there has been all round damage caused to crops, homes, properties besides tourism activities.

Published: 12th August 2018 01:44 PM  |   Last Updated: 12th August 2018 09:42 PM   |  A+A-

Kerala-Floods

An aerial view of the flood-hit districts of Kerala (Photo | PTI)

By Online Desk

Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh today made an aerial survey of the rain-ravaged Ernakulam and Idukki districts of Kerala and said the situation in the state was "very serious".

He assured the state government of all help from the Centre to meet the challenges posed by the unprecedented floods in Kerala, while addressing affected people at a relief camp at Elanthikkara in Paravur Taluk in Ernakulam district.

"Today we conducted an aerial survey of flood affected areas with the Chief Minister and I reached the conclusion that the situation is very serious in Kerala due to floods," he said.

"And I would like to assure the state government that all sorts of support will be provided by the central government to meet the challenges of the flood situation," he said. The Central government stands firmly with the state government in this situation, added the union minister. He also heard the grievances of people who lost their homes and land in the floods.

HM Shri @rajnathsingh conducting the aerial survey of flood affected areas in Kerala. He is accompanied by the Chief Minister of Kerala Shri Pinarayi Vijayan and the MoS Tourism Shri @alphonstourism pic.twitter.com/mqy8FFeAfo

Rajnath Singh told the media that the state has witnessed the worst ever situation since 1924 and there has been all round damage caused to crops, homes, properties besides tourism activities and the lives of one lakh people have been affected.

The minister said that considering the grave situation, "I have made an immediate release of Rs 100 crore" and a new central team would be sent soon for the assessment of the damages.

Rajnath Singh also met a delegation of the Congress-led opposition besides leaders from his party also.

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Some relief as water levels in reservoirs subside

The rains started lashing several parts of Kerala this morning hampering the relief operations undertaken by multiple agencies in the flood and landslides hit regions.

However, the water level in the Idukki and Idamalayar reservoirs have further reduced, bringing some relief, with the authorities saying there was no need for any panic for people living downstream, officials said.

There were no fresh casualties reported since yesterday and the toll in the rain-related incidents since the current monsoon fury from August 8 stood at 37, they said.

CM Vijayan announces ex-gratia compensation

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan had earlier reviewed the situation and announced Rs 10 lakhs for victims who lost their land and house, Rs 4 lakh ex-gratia to the next of kin of the deceased, Rs 6 lakhs for people who lost land and Rs 3,800 for those in camps to buy ration. He has also made a personal contribution of Rs one lakh to the Chief Minister's Distress Relief Fund (CMDRF).

More rains predicted

The National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) had on Saturday warned that heavy to very heavy rains were expected in 16 states, including Kerala, till tomorrow.

At present, all the five floodgates of the Idukki dam are open and in a second, 7.50 lakh litres of water are being sent out to the Periyar river which touches parts of Thrissur and Ernakulam districts, causing floods resulting in the evacuation of over 10,000 people.

But officials in Ernakulam and Thrissur on Sunday said the situation was under control and the water level of the river has come down which may allow some people to return to their homes.

"As the first step for the families to return, various volunteers along with health officials will first reach the homes and clean up," a government official at a relief camp in Ernakulam said.

ALSO READ: NDRF officer Kanhaiya Kumar wins praise on social media for daring rescue

The situation in the hilly district of Wayanad, which has seen the massive destruction to crops and properties, on Sunday looked a bit grim with intermittent heavy rains pounding the region.

The day's forecast points to more rains with chances of landslides and mud-slips.

(With inputs from agencies)

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