CHENNAI: Sitting on a broken chair amid the ruins of his house along the shoreline of Srinivasapuram, R Sivakumar (36) looked on as the waves kept inching forward more than ever before. “The sea has been rough since the start of this month. But we thought it was like any other occasion when the water would enter a few houses near the shore and then recede,” he told Express.
But as things turned out, Sivakumar, a fisherman who claims he has no fear of the sea, was in for a big surprise. In the last two weeks, the surging waves brought down the walls of his house, built for more than `1 lakh as well as those of more than 50 others.
Locals say the sea water has crossed 50 metres into the shore, forcing them to keep a strict watch on their children. The houses, many of which were recently refurbished or built, were not thatched huts but of brick and cement. Nearby, the backside of the local church on the beach’s sands has crumbled.
Walking down a narrow gap between the remains of two houses (one of which was hers), Vijaya (45) speaks of her fear of the rising sea level. “The sea intrusion has been deep this time. We will definitely leave this area if we are allotted houses elsewhere,” she said.