Kerala floods: Govt sounds alarm in landslide-prone areas as state braces for heavy rain

By: |
October 20, 2021 11:26 AM

The chief minister added that the respective district administrations had been directed to compulsorily shift people living in unfit houses and close to riverbanks.

Idukki-dam-1 keralaOn Tuesday, the administration confirmed the opening of three sluice gates of the Idukki reservoir for only the fifth time in the dam’s history. (File)

Kerala, already battered by heavy rainfall, is likely to receive more rain from Wednesday, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) said. The weather bureau has predicted heavy-to-extremely heavy rainfall to hit the Western Ghat belt and the state’s eastern hills.

The Kerala government has already started evacuating people from the landslide-prone eastern hills following the devastating landslides in Kottayam and Idukki districts. The respective district administrations, on the other hand, have roped in fishermen to evacuate people from the low-lying areas.

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan has called for vigilance from residents of river basins and hilly regions.

Chances of landslide and rivers overflowing are high as the southwest monsoon has reached its fag end, Vijayan said. He also urged people living in houses identified by the state disaster management authority as unfit to move to safer locations.

The chief minister added that the respective district administrations had been directed to compulsorily shift people living in unfit houses and close to riverbanks.

The disaster management authority has already issued an alert for the state’s landslide-prone areas. In several districts, the revenue department has urged people living in landslide-prone hill slopes to voluntarily move out.

In Kottayam, which last week suffered the effects of flash floods and landslides, the district administration has identified 33 landslide-prone areas. Collector Dr. PK Jayasree told The Indian Express that people living in such areas, identified by the Geological Survey of India, should move to safer locations. She added the government would take steps to evacuate the residents to camps if they didn’t move out voluntarily.

The warning comes after the government was forced to open the shutters of four dams where the water level had risen above the danger mark. On Tuesday, the administration confirmed the opening of three sluice gates of the Idukki reservoir for only the fifth time in the dam’s history. The water from the reservoir, being released into the Periyar river, will reach Ernakulam and Idukki districts downstream.

Anticipating a rise in water level and keeping in mind the predictions of heavy rainfall, the state government is shifting people living in river basins and low-lying areas to relief camps.

Ernakulam Collector Jafar Malik said the water from the Idukki reservoir would reach Aluva in Ernakulam by midnight. The rise in the water level is unlikely to be alarming if there is no further rain, he said. However, heavy rainfall could change the situation.

Get live Stock Prices from BSE, NSE, US Market and latest NAV, portfolio of Mutual Funds, Check out latest IPO News, Best Performing IPOs, calculate your tax by Income Tax Calculator, know market’s Top Gainers, Top Losers & Best Equity Funds. Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Financial Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel and stay updated with the latest Biz news and updates.

Next Stories
1Air quality in Delhi improves as winds disperse pollutants
2Delhi pollution: Air quality improves with increased wind speed
3Delhi pollution: Ban on truck entry to continue till further orders, say officials