This monsoon season, India’s southern state of Kerala witnessed worst floods in nearly a century after torrential rains. Heavy downpour forced authorities to open the shutters of dozens of dams and reservoirs to relieve pressure and prevent collapses last week.
“Our state is in the midst of an unprecedented flood havoc,” Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan said in a statement on Friday. “For the first time in history, 27 dams in the state had to be opened. Never before has the state witnessed a calamity of this scale.”
The death toll crossed 350 and thousands have taken shelter in various relief camps across the state.
In some relief, the rain has become intermittent causing the floodwaters to recede in many areas. Red alert has been withdrawn from all the districts, while eleven districts are on orange alert.
According to the Defense Ministry, Indian Army has rescued over 23,000 people as part of its ‘Operation Madad’ to rescue stranded people in flood-hit Kerala.
All the three wings of the armed forces along with the Coast Guard and National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) have been working round the clock to rescue stranded people from various districts. Army choppers have played a crucial role in evacuating people stuck on the rooftops of their flooded homes.
As part of the operation, the Army has so far provided medical aid to over 2,000 people. It has also restored the connectivity at 42 locations, cleared 22 landslides and constructed 15 temporary bridges, the Defense Minister said.
Helicopters have been dropping emergency food and water supplies across Kerala, while special trains carrying drinking water and rice have been sent to the state. From today, Navy airstrip has been opened for passenger flights.
Financial Aid to the Flood-Ravaged State:
As unprecedented floods hit Kerala, Mr Vijayan said that the state had suffered an estimated loss of around 20,000 crore rupees.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, after chairing a review meeting and conducting an aerial survey, announced a relief of Rs 500 crore for the state, aside from the Rs 100 crore declared by Home Minister Rajnath Singh last week.
Various officials, celebrities and people from various walks of life have also contributed money to provide relief to the flood-ravaged state.
In addition, state governments from all over the country announced financial assistance for supporting the flood relief efforts.
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