Published: Wed, August 14, 2019

India death toll rises to 144 as floods cut off roads

India death toll rises to 144 as floods cut off roads

Eighty-eight people have died across 14 districts of flood-battered Kerala while 40 are still missing, authorities said on Tuesday.

Floods and landslides across southern and western Indian states have killed almost 200 people over the past week as the Indian Army intensifies its relief operations to help thousands stranded in desperate need of rescue.

In Malappuram district, alone at least 11 people have been killed and around 50 others are missing after a landslide hit Kavalappara village following incessant rains in the region. In Malappuram, 59,351 people have been lodged in 240 camps. Over 250,000 people are staying in relief camps.

In Wayanad's Puthumala, another landslide wrecked the area.

The holiday was announced as several areas in these districts continued to be inundated and relief camps were functioning in several schools.

The situation has also improved in flood and heavy rain affected districts of Karnataka and inflows in reservoirs are also steadily decreasing, an official update issued by the government said on Tuesday said.

Seventeen deaths have been reported from Kozhikode where over 43,000 people have shifted to 177 relief camps.

Vijayan will visit Malappuram and Wayanad districts on Tuesday.

Extreme weather conditions that have been battering Indian states of Maharashtra, Karnataka, Kerala and Gujarat since last week forced hundreds of thousands of people to seek temporary shelters.

In states hit by floods, several roads were cleared, allowing partial movement of traffic, with priority being given to trucks carrying essential goods. It appears that he deliberately skipped the survey of the badly-affected Kerala. As per IMD, the light to moderate rainfall is likely to continue.

"Starting tomorrow, rains will be heavy in Alappuzha, Ernakulam and Idukki till Wednesday, while on Thursday it's going to be isolated rains", said an IMD official.

However, paddy cultivation that also sustained wetlands and has the capacity to hold excess rainwater and mitigate flood damage, has been steadily declining since 1970s, he added.

At least 93 people have been killed and more than 400,000 displaced in floods and mudslides following days of torrential rains in southern India. Hence, it was just the routine morning prayers for them. Only the headline has been changed.

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