People plucked from rooftops as Indian floods kill 324

People plucked from rooftops as Indian floods kill 324

People plucked from rooftops as Indian floods kill 324

The floods began nine days ago and Vijayan said 164 people had been killed - some in landslides - with about 223,000 people forced into 1,568 relief camps.

Heavy rains since August 8 have triggered floods and landslides and caused homes and bridges to collapse across Kerala, a famously picturesque state known for its quiet tropical backwaters and attractive beaches.

Anil Vasudevan, who handles disaster management at the Kerala health department, said authorities had isolated three people with chickenpox in one of the relief camps in Aluva town, almost 250 km (155 miles) from state capital Thiruvananthapuram.

After conducting an aerial survey on Saturday, to get a first-hand knowledge of the flood-affected area, Prime Minister Narendra Modi sanctioned a solatium of Rs 500 crore to the rain-battered state.

Addressing a press conference on Friday evening at the capital Thiruvananthapuram, he said that 82,442 people had been rescued on Friday, primarily with the help of Navy and fisherfolks' boats.

At least 190 people have died in the flash flooding caused by torrential rain since August 8, while 324 have died in the three months of the rainy season.

The death toll from the worst flooding to hit India's Kerala state in a century has jumped to 357 with losses to infrastructure pegged at nearly $3bn.

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According to the government, 6,000 miles of Kerala roads have been destroyed or damaged.

The India Meteorological Department on Saturday afternoon forecast that widespread rains, with heavy rains at isolated places, are likely to continue over Kerala following low-pressure area very likely to develop over northwest Bay of Bengal and neighbourhood during the next 24 hours.

Humane Society International India said many animals have perished in the disaster and were working with the Kerala government and the National Disaster Response Force to locate and rescue dogs, cats and other animals left behind during evacuations.

"Please ask Modi to give us helicopters, give us helicopters".

'No water and food. We have close to one million people in relief camps and we need to feed them. On top of tourist cancellations, Kerala's rubber industry has been hit by the floods.

Journalist Nikhila Henry said, "Red alert in all 14 districts; thousands crying out for their lives, 35 dams opened, the fourth busiest airport in the country remains closed; still this has not been declared as a national calamity; isn't it because Kerala is not part of India?", reports Firstpost. Crops on 80,300 acres of land have also been damaged, the Home Ministry said.

Flaying the state for "failing in the endeavour", Leader of Opposition Chennithala said, "I have been flooded with calls from the affected persons".

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