Receding waters from highlands flood Kottayam’s plains

Death toll reaches five, relief camps opened as Kuttanad remains inundated

Local residents being evacuated from the flood-affected areas near Chungam in Kottayam on Monday.

Death toll reaches five, relief camps opened as Kuttanad remains inundated

The flood situation in Kottayam improved considerably on Monday with water level in all major rivers stabilising throughout the day and relief and rescue operations going on in full swing. While the high-range areas, which battled landslips and floods in the last few days, returned to normal during the day, life along the low-lying areas on the western parts of the district came to a complete standstill as the run-off water forced more people to go to the rescue camps.“People living in the Vaikom, Kottayam and Changanassery taluks were the worst affected,” said M. Anjana, District Collector. According to her, as many as 216 relief camps were opened in the district, which accommodated about 5,626 persons from 1,860 families. With the floodwater inundating most parts of Kuttanad, the district administration expects more people from the region to seek refuge in Changanassery and neighbouring regions.“The influx of people, however, has been much less than on the previous occasion (2018 mega floods) when we accommodated about 17,000 people from Kuttanad,” the Collector said.Meanwhile, the death toll due to the floods reached five with the rescue officials here on Monday recovering the dead bodies of two more persons. Sudheesh, 38, a native of Perumabyikkad, and Kurian Abraham of Nattassery, 61, had gone missing in the flood. Traffic along several roads in the Meenachil taluk including Kottayam-Thodupuzha, Ponkunnam and Erattupetta, which were disrupted by the flood, was restored during the day. Vehicular traffic along routes on the eastern side of Kottayam, however, remained disrupted. Preliminary estimates suggested that the farm sector in the district sustained a loss of around ₹30.71 crore due to the heavy rain that lashed the region between July 28 and August 9. Bund breaches were reported from northern Kuttanad. Fish farming units too suffered losses.

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