Heavy landslides in Idukki district
Landslides triggered by heavy downpour have claimed 13 lives in the high ranges of Idukki district of Kerala. The RSS volunteers are actively engaged in rescue operations alongwith police and fireforce in affected areas. The dead included three children as their houses were on slopes of the hills and were swept away by flash floods caused by heavy rains battering the area.
The Collector has sought the help of the navy for rescue operations. The State government has sought help from the Centre. Revenue Minister Adoor Prakash said that an amount of Rs 2 lakh would be given to the kin of the dead. Casualties were reported from Kunchithanny, Karimannoor and Urumbidam. Roads linking the hilly district with the rest of the State have been blocked by boulders and rubble crashing down in landslides. Idukki MLA Roshi Augustine said relief works are hampered by disruption in road traffic. However, the district administration has geared up to meet the situation with the help of local people, Shri Augustine said. The water level is rising in Idukki and Mullaperiyar reservoirs. Shutters of small dams have been opened.
(K Rajeshchandran, Media Centre Kerala)