A Look at the Extent of Destruction and How Kerala Battled the Flood Fury
The unusually high rainfall, increased the dam water to dangerous levels, prompting the state to open 35 of its 42 dams for the first time in history. Consequently, 774 of its 1564 villages were inundated.
File photo of a partially submerged house in flood waters in Kerala. (Image: AP)
New Delhi: About one-sixth of the total Kerala population has been affected by the incessant rains and floods that submerged half of its villages and damaged properties worth Rs 19,500 crore. According to official estimates, 373 people were killed, while 32 others remain missing.
The unusually high rainfall, Kerala was pounded with twice the amount this monsoon as compared to the rains that caused the 2013 Uttarakhand disaster, 2016 floods in Assam and 2017 floods in Bihar, increased the dam water to dangerous levels, prompting the state to open 35 of its 42 dams for the first time in history. Consequently, 774 of its 1564 villages were inundated.
Several states and central agencies came to aid for what is touted as the ugliest flood Kerala witnessed in a century.
Central forces are currently deployed in addition to a large contingent of State Police, Fire and Rescue Personnel and the entire contingent of State Disaster Response Team (SDRF).
Fishermen, 1,400-strong in number, rushed from coastal villages of Kerala in their 600-odd country vessels to save their brothers. They ventured into the remotest corners of the affected areas in their modified vessel rescuing people.
Their valour was responded in equal measure by the Armed Forces—23 columns of Army with 104 boats; 94 rescue teams of Navy with one medical team, nine helicopters, two fixed-wing aircraft, 27 hired boats; and the Air Force who came in 22 helicopters and 23 fixed-wing aircrafts.
Also, 59 rescue teams from National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) with 207 boats, two companies of Border Security Force (BSF); 10 teams of Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) were deployed for the rescue mission.
A warm gesture by Odisha government brought 244 brave firemen in their 63 rubber boats to complement 4,100 other Fire and Rescue Services personnel trying to save the people stranded in the Kerala floods.
According to official figures, the state has evacuated more than 12.5 lakh people to more than 3,941 odd camps. About 38 tonne packaged food and medical supplies were air-dropped to approximately 50,000 people
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