Flood-ravaged Kerala faces a sharp fall in tourist footfall

RSTV Bureau
Gir-Somnath: An aerial view of a flooded Rajpara village after heavy monsoon rainfall, in Gir-Somnath district on Wednesday, July 18, 2018. PTI Representational Image

Gir-Somnath: An aerial view of a flooded Rajpara village after heavy monsoon rainfall, in Gir-Somnath district on Wednesday, July 18, 2018.
PTI
Representational Image

Kerala is staring at a 4 to 5 per cent decline in tourist footfall if the sector does not pick up from October. The state is dealing with the aftermath of the worst floods in 100 years.

The busiest airport in Kochi is shut since August 16 and is expected to resume operations only from the 29th of this month.

The Kochi and Ernakulum regions, which have been under the waters for almost two weeks, alone accounts for around 52 per cent of all tourism in the state.

Ahead of the floods tourism footfall in the state had been hit due to the Nipah virus.

Meanwhile Prime Minister Narendra Modi assured the Kerala governor that the state would get more central funds from the National Disaster Response Fund as per laid down procedure. The assurance came during their meeting in Delhi on Saturday.

The Kerala government organised a formal farewell function in honour of the various central forces that played a pivotal role in the rescue and relief operations in the state. Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan thanked the forces and said the state will remember their services with gratitude and appreciation. The CM also urged all Malayalis to donate one month salary to rebuild the state.

While heavy rainfall caused heavy destruction and loss of lives in Kerala, more than 40 per cent districts in South India witnessed deficient rainfall this monsoon season according to the IMD.

(With inputs from agencies)