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Monday, Aug 19, 2019

Death toll in Kerala up to 78, rescuers focus on rehabilitation

No red alert has been sounded in Kerala on Monday as the continuous heavy downpour in the past few days brought back memories of last year’s flooding that killed more than 400 people in the state.

south Updated: Aug 12, 2019 08:45 IST
Ramesh Babu
Ramesh Babu
Hindustan Times, Thiruvananthapuram
A view of a flood-affected region in Malappuram district of Kerala.
A view of a flood-affected region in Malappuram district of Kerala. (PTI Photo)
         

The death toll from floods in Kerala rose to 78 and 58 people were reported missing, authorities said on Monday, as rains let up allowing rescue teams to shift focus on rehabilitating at least 300,000 residents in the state.

No red alert has been sounded in Kerala on Monday as the continuous heavy downpour in the past few days brought back memories of last year’s flooding that killed more than 400 people in the state.

Centres to distribute relief material has been opened at many places as rescuers said it will take at least two more days to remove the mound of slush triggered by landslides across the state.

As Kerala struggled with flooding, many people have decided not to celebrate Eid al-Adha or Bakrid, the Muslim holy festival which is being observed across India on Monday.

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi is camping in his parliamentary constituency, Wayanad, which is one of the worst affected. Rahul Gandhi reached Kozhikode on Sunday afternoon and went to relief camps in Wayanad.

Flight operations from the international airport at Kochi resumed on Sunday afternoon, two days after they were shut due to the inundation of the runway area.

The monsoon downpour has killed at least 140 people and displaced over one million in Kerala, Karnataka and Maharashtra in the past week, and three other states — Gujarat, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh — are battling a crisis triggered by sudden downpours.

The sudden deluge in some states, while some others are reeling from rain deficiency, has put the spotlight firmly on a skewed monsoon, which experts have linked to climate change.

The weather office said on Sunday the intensity of rain over Gujarat, Kerala and Karnataka may reduce on Monday.

First Published: Aug 12, 2019 08:39 IST

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