Rajnath Singh conducts aerial survey of flood-hit Kerala

RSTV Bureau
Image: Twitter/@HMOIndia

Image: Twitter/@HMOIndia

Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh conducted an aerial survey of two rain-ravaged districts of Kerala on Sunday 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.

The Minister was 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, the union minister said.

Singh was speaking in the presence of Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, Union Minister Alphons Kannanthanam, who arrived with him from Delhi, state Revenue Minister E Chandrasekharan and senior state government officials.

He also heard the grievances of people who lost their homes and land in the floods.

Earlier, Singh, on his arrival here, held a brief meeting with Vijayan, the Revenue Minister, Agriculture Minister V S Sunil Kumar,Water Resources Minister Mathew T Thomas and Chief Secretary Tom Jose at Cochin International Airport.

Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh arrived in Kerala on Sunday and took an aerial survey of flood-affected areas. He was accompanied by the Chief Minister of Kerala Pinarayi Vijayan and the MoS Tourism KJ Alphons.

Terming the flood situation in Kerala following heavy rains as something never witnessed by the state since Independence, Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh announced Rs 100 crore as immediate central relief.

14 teams of NDRF consisting of 404 rescuers and 31 boats are already deployed in various parts of flood hit districts. So far, NDRF teams have rescued seven people and evacuated 398 others and 12 livestock.

The death toll rises to 37 due to heavy downpour in the state. A total of 35,874 people have been put up in 341 relief camps across Kerala, officials at the state Disaster Management control room said.

An aeriel view of the flooded locality of Aluva after heavy rains, in Kerala on Friday, Aug 10, 2018. (PTI Photo)

An aeriel view of the flooded locality of Aluva after heavy rains, in Kerala on Friday, Aug 10, 2018. (PTI Photo)

A total of 580 houses were partially damaged and 44 fully, they said, adding crops in 1301 hectares have been destroyed.

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, who undertook an aerial survey on Saturday of rain ravaged areas of Idukki and Wayanad, said Kerala was in the midst of an unprecedented flood havoc and the calamity has caused “immeasurable misery and devastation.”

A view of houses submerged in water following a flash flood, triggered by heavy rains, at Palakkad in Kerala on Thursday, Aug 9, 2018. (PTI Photo)

A view of houses submerged in water following a flash flood, triggered by heavy rains, at Palakkad in Kerala on Thursday, Aug 9, 2018. (PTI Photo)

He said Rs 10 lakh compensation would be given to people who lost their homes and land and Rs four lakh to those who lost a member of their family.

Though there was a respite from rains across the state on Saturday, especially in catchment areas of Idukki dam, the Indian Meteorological Department issued a ‘Red alert’,asking people to be cautious as there was a possibility of heavy to very heavy rainfall in most places in Idukki, Wayanad, Kannur, Ernakulam, Palakkad and Malappuram.

(With PTI inputs)