19th August, 2019
At least 121 people have died in flood-hit Kerala according to a state-wide calamity report issued by the government in the second spell of south-western monsoon rains since August 8. Malappuram district saw the highest number of deaths at 58, followed by Kozhikode (17) and Wayanad (12).
At least 40 people have been injured in flood-related incidents while over 21 people are believed to be missing in the state after heavy flooding. A total of 1,789 houses have been completely damaged due to flooding and over 26,000 people have taken refuge in relief camps.
The state government is trying its best to locate bodies that have gone missing at Kavalappara in Malappuram and Puthumala in Wayanad--both places were hit by massive landslides, wiping out two villages.
Ground penetrating radars were put into use on Sunday to locate the missing bodies. A team of experts from Hyderabad had started the search operations at the two villages with the system, which has the capability of detecting bodies buried under mounds of earth.
Meanwhile, more than a lakh volunteers have enrolled for cleaning work in flood-hit villages in the northern districts of the state.
"Volunteers from various organisations have identified over 15,000 spots in Wayanad. They are moving in batches and have started the cleaning mission. They will remove the mud and slush from the houses, clean wells and the locality," an official told PTI.
As the rains have started receding, people have started returning to their homes after cleaning the accumulated mud and filth. However, it will take some time for the flood-hit areas in the state to recover as the extent of damage to property is believed to be severe.