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Monday
November 2018
3:13 PM IST
News Headlines
Fresh protest in Sabarimala        Rahul Gandhi Challenges PM Modi For Debate On Rafale Deal        New bill likely to be introduced in Parliament to rechristen names of Bombay, Calcutta and Madras High Courts        TM Krishna 'celebrates democracy' at Delhi concert        Death toll rises to 76 in California fire as Trump visits        Sri Lanka president Sirisena holds all-party meeting talks to end political crisis        Pankaj wins grand double, extends world title tally to 21        England win second Test against Sri Lanka by 57 runs        Smriti Mandhana becomes second-fastest Indian woman to reach 1000 T20I        It is quality of cricket rather than sledging that wins matches: Shastri on new Aussie approach        India in Australia: Kohli promises to not start arguments, only finish them        At Least Two Killed, Eight Injured In Blast In Karachi        Centre's New Move May Escalate Feud With RBI Ahead Of Board Meet: Report        'Gaja' crosses coast, rainfall pounds TN, 22 dead        Sabarimala board to move SC, buy time to implement order        Sabarimala board to move SC, buy time to implement order        Sindhu crashes out; Srikanth, Sameer enter quarterfinals of Hong Kong Open        No more chopping and changing till World Cup: Ravi Shastri        Air India eyes Rs 800 cr from sale of over 70 properties        Intel India opens design house costing Rs 1,100 cr at B'luru        
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Kerala News
Half of Kerala reels under floods as 29 die, 54,000 are homeless
 
Thiruvananthapuram, Aug 10 (PTI) Dam reservoirs and rivers overflowed, sections of highways collapsed and homes were swept away in severe flooding in more than half of Kerala, after days of incessant rains left nearly 54,000 people homeless and killed at least 29, officials said today.

Five columns of Army were deployed in the state's seven severely-hit northern districts, out of Kerala's 14, to help evacuate people and to build makeshift bridges even as the Indian Navy's southern command was put on alert after water level in Periyar river rose amid concern that parts of Wellingdon Island in Kochi could be inundated.

Almost all 40-odd rivers in the state are in spate, officials said.

Northern and central Kerala have been battered by heavy rains of the Southwest monsoon since August 8, which has left 29 people dead, including three today. Of them, 25 died in landslides and four in drowning. State officials said a total of 53,501 people are now housed in 439 relief camps across the state.

Tourists were barred from entering the hilly Idukki district after roads caved in at many places. Army soldiers were building small bridges to evacuate people stranded at various places in Kozhikode and Wayanad.

A red alert was issued for Idukki and its adjoining districts in view of the possibility of release of more water from the Idukki reservoir.

At least 50 tourists, including 24 foreigners, stranded at the Plum Judy resort at Munnar since Wednesday were rescued and taken to safer places, state Tourism minister Kadakampally Surendran said.

People living downstream of Periyar river in Kochi, and Cheruthoni river in Idukki have been warned of a possibility of inundation of banks.

Water level had crossed the maximum storage capacity of reservoirs of 24 out of the state's 58 dams, forcing officials to release the water by opening the sluice gates, including three of the Idukki reservoir. Two more shutters of the Cheruthoni dam, part of the Idukki reservoir, the biggest arch dam in Asia, were lifted around 7 am today.

One shutter was opened yesterday after a gap of 26 years.

This morning, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan reviewed the flood situation and relief works being undertaken by the Army, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard and the NDRF.

Due to the increase in the water level at Idukki dam, "it is essential to release water three times (more) than what was being released now", Vijayan said, adding that this will lead to rise in the water levels of Periyar river and its tributaries. He appealed to people to be vigilant.

Vijayan has cancelled all his public functions till August 12, and will monitor the situation from the state capital.

Union minister Alphons Kannamthanam said he discussed the flood situation in Kerala with Home Minister Rajnath Singh this morning. Singh also spoke with Vijayan, and will make an aerial survey of the flood-affected areas on Sunday.

"The Government of India is providing all the required assistance including services of armed forces, disaster management team and other required assistance. Any other immediate assistance requested by the Government of Kerala will be provided," Alphons said in a Facebook post.

Col. Ajai Sharma, the commandant of DSC Centre, who is overseeing relief and rescue operations, said five columns of Army have been deployed in the northern districts since last night.

"The haphazard development along the streams has affected the natural flow of rivers, which is a challenge right now," he said.

Small bridges have been constructed to evacuate stranded people in various places in Kozhikode and Wayanad areas, and rescue operations are currently underway.

"The situation is under control," he said.

Meanwhile, state Revenue minister E Chandrasekharan reviewed the flood situation and the precautionary measures to be taken in Aluva near Kochi airport and nearby areas in view of the possibility of increase in the water level following release of more water from Idukki reservoir.

Periyar river in Aluva is already in spate following release of water from Idamalayar dam, and people living in low-lying areas have been asked to be vigilant.

Cochin International Airport Limited sources said operations at the airport had not been affected.

"The operational area is intact. No cancellation of services so far," an airport spokesperson said.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke with Vijayan yesterday, and offered all possible assistance to those affected.

In Palakkad district, the flood waters started receding today as the quantity of water being released from Malampuzha dam was reduced. However, many areas are still inundated and people were seen trying to save their belongings.


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INTERNATIONAL NEWS
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 (Chico, Nov 18, 2018):Nearly 1,300 people remain unaccounted for and the death toll from the
Sri Lanka president Sirisena holds all-party meeting talks to end political crisis
At Least Two Killed, Eight Injured In Blast In Karachi
US, China see rival visions for entwined Asia-Pacific region
NATIONAL NEWS
Rahul Gandhi Challenges PM Modi For Debate On Rafale Deal
 (Ambikapur, Nov 18, 2018):Stepping up attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Congress Presid
New bill likely to be introduced in Parliament to rechristen names of Bombay, Calcutta and Madras High Courts
TM Krishna 'celebrates democracy' at Delhi concert
'Gaja' crosses coast, rainfall pounds TN, 22 dead
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