Heavy rains lash Kerala, schools shut today, Kochi airport closed till Sunday

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Heavy rains have lashed Kerala in past two days. The incessant rains have claimed over 20 lives with many reported missing.  More than 22,000 people have been shifted to some 315 relief camps across the state, officials said on Friday.

Flight operations at Kochi international have been stopped till Sunday due to water-logging, airport officials said.

Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan in a tweet said, “Update on relief camps (As of 07:00 AM 9/8/2019): 315 flood relief camps have been opened across the State. These camps now host 22165 persons from 5936 families. Wayanad has the most number of camps-105.”

A heavy landslide was reported in Wayanad’s Meppadi region. Several were feared trapped under debris.

A team of National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and the fire department are at the site and efforts are being placed to rescue trapped people.

“The landslide in Meppadi, Wayanad was a major one. We are looking at all possible means to rescue. Most parts of the State are witnessing heavy rainfall. All arrangements have been put in place to deal with the disaster,” Vijayan had said earlier.

Schools and colleges are shut at several districts of the state today.

In a series of tweets, Rahul Gandhi on Thursday said, “The people of Wayanad, my Lok Sabha constituency, are in my thoughts & prayers as they battle raging flood waters. I was to travel to Wayanad, but I’ve now been advised by officials that my presence will disrupt relief operations. I’m awaiting their OK to travel.”

Rahul said, he spoke to the Kerala CM, P Vijayan, regarding serious flood situation in Wayanad. He had also spoken to the Collectors of Wayanad, Kozhikode and Malappuram to review relief measures being undertaken.

Rahul requested Congress workers and leaders, citizens and NGOs working in Kerala to help with relief operations in flood hit areas of Wayanad. “I hope the State Govt will release a generous financial rehabilitation package to help those who’ve been impacted by the floods,” he added.

“The flood situation in my parliamentary constituency, #Wayanad is grim. I’m monitoring the situation closely & have spoken to the Kerala CM and key Govt officials to expedite relief. I will be reaching out to PM Modi as well to brief him & request Central Govt. assistance,” Rahul had said.