The flood situation continued to be grim in Upper Kuttanad region and other low-lying areas of Thiruvallur, Mallappally, and Kozhencherry taluks on Tuesday.

The flood has claimed one more life, taking the total death toll in the natural calamity in the district to three. Baiju, 31, of Vallicaud drowned in the Achencoil river and the body was fished out by a Fire and Rescue Force team on Tuesday afternoon.

With the floodwaters started receding from the upper reaches, the flood situation turned grim in the lower reaches of Upper Kuttanad. The swollen Pampa, Achencoil, Manimala, Kallar, and Kakkattar rivers have breached their banks, inundating many low-lying areas in river basins.

District Collector P.B. Noohu told
The Hindu
that the administration had taken every possible measure for the safety of the people and their property. As many as 138 flood relief camps had been opened in the three taluks as on Tuesday afternoon. The administration has provided free ration to all the affected families. Steps had been taken to assess the loss due to crop destruction and damage to houses and other property, official sources said.

Holiday

Mr. Noohu declared that Wednesday would be a holiday for all educational institutions, other than professional colleges, in the taluks of Thiruvalla, Mallappally, and Kozhencherry.

Vehicular traffic on a good number of rural roads have been disrupted for the second consecutive day on Tuesday. Niranam-Thottady Road, Kombankary Road, Azhiyidathuchira-Mepral Road, Azhiyidathuchira-Ezhinjillom Road, Thevery-Viyapuram Road, Chakkulam-Panachamoodu Road, Kuttoor-Vallamkulam Road, Kuttoor Sastha Temple Road, and Mepral-Kidangara Road have been inundated in the rain.

Scarcity of potable water is another problem, as floodwaters have polluted a good number of wells. The Collector, who has visited various relief camps, said the pollution of wells posed very high public health risk. Water supply through the Kerala Water Authority waterlines remained irregular due to power supply disruption.

Unscientific culverts

The failure on the part of the Irrigation wing of the Water Resources Department in repairing the damaged shutters of the irrigation canal linking the Manimala with the Mathirampuzha fields in Kuttoor grama panchayat resulted in severe flooding of two major roads in the panchayat. As many as 700 families residing on the northern side of MC Road in the panchayat were affected with the floodwaters inundating their dwelling places.

MC Road, which was modernised under the Kerala State Transport Project, is acting as more or less like a ‘dam’ along the Thiruvalla-Chengannur stretch due to grossly inadequate flood escape routes. This is due to illegal land conversions on either side of the road and the unscientific construction of culverts. The flood has also damaged human dwellings constructed on the fringe areas of paddy fields in Upper Kuttanad. A total of 138 houses had been damaged.

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