Seven more bodies recovered from Kavalappara; IMD predicts marked decrease in monsoon activity

The death toll in rain-related incidents in the State crossed 100 on Wednesday with seven more bodies being recovered from Kavalappara, Malappuram district, where a massive landslip wreaked destruction on August 8.

A Wednesday evening update put the Statewide death toll in the rain fury at 102. Thirty-seven people are still missing in the State, with 29 of them in Malappuram, seven in the landslip-hit Meppadi in Wayanad, and one person in Kottayam, the government said.

With more people returning home, the number of relief camps have come down from 1,206 on Tuesday to 1,094 on Wednesday. As many as 55,475 families (1,77,335 people) are still being accommodated in the camps.

A review meeting convened by Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Wednesday evening concluded that it would be wise to maintain a high alert despite the reduction in rainfall. He also stressed the need to speed up the rescue and relief effort.

An IMD weather bulletin predicted a marked decrease in monsoon activity over Kerala during the next few days. Orange alerts indicating isolated heavy to very heavy rainfall (up to 20.4 cm) have been issued for Malappuram, Kozhikode and Kannur and yellow alerts for isolated heavy rainfall (up to 11.5 cm) have been issued for Wayanad and Kasaragod for Thursday.

Advisory to fishermen

The IMD has advised fishermen not to venture into the sea as strong winds from a westerly direction with speeds reaching 45 kmph to 55 kmph are likely along and off the Kerala coast till Thursday evening. High waves in the range of 3.3 to four metres are likely along the southern Tamil Nadu coast from Colachel to Dhanushkodi till Friday night, the Indian National Centre for Ocean Information Services said.

Meanwhile, the losses to the farm sector has crossed ₹1,000 crore, the Chief Minister said. The lashing rains, flooding and landslips caused crop damage in 28,000 hectares, affecting 1.13 lakh farmers, he said.

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