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Heavy rains cause 11 deaths in Indian states of Karnataka, Kerala

Nearly 43,000 people have so far been evacuated from flood-hit and rain-affected areas of Karnataka, where the rain fury has left nine people dead, authorities said on Thursday. The worst-hit was Belagavi district, where six persons have lost their lives, while 40,180 people have been evacuated.

Two persons lost their lives in rain-related incidents in Uttara Kannada district, from where 3,088 people have been evacuated till date, and one in Shivamogga, according to official figures. Nearly 17,000 people are taking shelter in relief camps.

Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa is currently camping in Belagavi supervising relief and rescue operations. On Thursday, he visited rain-affected Shivajinagar and Gandhinagar areas of Belagavi.

“Releases from reservoirs are well coordinated and as per protocol to prevent inundation of downstream areas. The villages likely to be affected due to heavy discharge have been identified and necessary precautions taken”, an official statement said.

An aerial view of the flood-affected districts of north Karnataka
An aerial view of the flood-affected districts of north Karnataka, in Bengaluru, Monday. Credit: PTI

A total of 43,858 people from affected districts in northern, coastal and Malnad regions have so far been evacuated by joint rescue teams comprising Fire and Emergency department, State Disaster Response Force, National Disaster Response Force and Army, official sources said.

District administrations are on high alert and are prepared to tackle any emergency arising out of heavy discharge from reservoirs, the statement said.

“The flood situation is under control”, it said.

Two dead after rains batter Kerala

Two women were dead and over 2,600 people evacuated after heavy rains battered several parts of Kerala, said state Revenue Minister E. Chandrashekeran said on Thursday.

Chandrashekeran told the media that districts like Malappuram, Kozhikode, Kannur, Wayanad, Kasargode and Idukki were the worst affected areas.

On Wednesday morning, a 50-year-old woman, Kara, died after a tree fell over her house in Palakkad district’s Attapady. Twenty-four-year-old lady Muthu fell unconscious and died after her house in Panamaram village in Wayanad was flooded. More than 400 people were evacuated from their houses in Nilambur area alone.

“At the moment, 2,600 people have been kept in 47 relief camps in these places. Three teams of the NDRF (National Disaster Response Force) have started their work at Malappuram, Wayanad and Idukki. We have requested 10 more teams, of which five from Arkonam (Tamil Nadu) have started their journey,” said Chandrashekeran.

Nilambur police official A.P. Sunil told the media that while they transferred around 100 people to safer places, some have refused leave their houses. “If they do not come out on their own, they will be forcefully taken out,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) has predicted heavy rains in the state till August 14. Red alerts have been issued for the day at Idukki, Malappuram, Wayanad and Kozhikode districts.

Barring the state capital district and neighbouring Kollam, the remaining 12 districts have been affected by the rains.

Fishermen have also been warned not to visit the beaches because of the winds blowing at the speed of 40-50 km per hour.

Traffic on the Kannur-Kozhikode national highway and Kottayam-Kumili route have been badly affected.

Inbound tourists to Idukki district have been warned not to come till August 15 as the hilly district have been witnessing landslides at a few places.

Warning signal raised in Srikakulam district

The third warning signal has been raised in Srikakulam district as the flood level at Gotta Barrage on River Vamsadhara crossed 1.11 lakh cusecs on Thursday morning.

The second warning signal was continuing at Thotapalli Barrage on River Nagavali with an inflow of 43,479 cusecs.

Heavy downpour in the upper catchment area in Odisha is resulting in copious inflows into Vamsadhara and Nagavali rivers, the AP State Disaster Management Authority said.

At Kasinagar in Odisha, Vamsadhara was flowing at the danger level but has been steady at Gotta Barrage.

A 60-member team of NDRF and 35-member SDRF and 60 personnel of Fire Services Department have been deployed in Srikakulam district for rescue and relief operation in view of the flood situation.

Another team of SDRF personnel has been kept on standby at the AP Special Police Battalion at Chintavalasa in neighbouring Vizianagaram district to attend to any emergency.

About 13 boats have also been deployed in Srikakulam to evacuate people to safety in case of need.