Rain loses intensity, Kerala continues in alert mode

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Ten spillway shutters of Mullaperiyar dam, four shutters of Malampuzha dam and three shutters of Thenmala dam were opened on Friday

Ten spillway shutters of Mullaperiyar dam, four shutters of Malampuzha dam and three shutters of Thenmala dam were opened on Friday

Most of the districts reported a marked reduction in rain intensity on Friday, but the State continues to remain on alert as rainfall forecasts warned of isolated heavy rainfall in some districts over the weekend.

Ten spillway shutters of Mullaperiyar dam, four shutters of Malampuzha dam and three shutters of Thenmala dam were opened on Friday, Water Resources Minister Roshy Augustine’s office said. The water level in Mullaperiyar dam is at 137.75 ft.

No deaths were reported on the day in rain-related incidents.

Holiday declared

A holiday has been declared for educational institutions in Alappuzha district on Saturday. The Pathanamthitta district administration has declared a holiday for educational institutions where relief camps have been opened.

As on Friday, 12,195 people, including 2,087 children, were put up at 342 camps across various districts. Four houses were reported destroyed and 46 houses damaged.

Eleven teams of the National Disaster Response Force have been deployed in various districts, while one column of the Army and two Defence Security Corps teams are on standby.

An India Meteorological Department update indicated that intense rainfall activity is likely to continue over Kerala for two more days. Cyclonic circulations persist over north coastal Andhra Pradesh and and adjoining part of the Bay of Bengal, and over central parts of Karnataka. Four districts – Idukki, Kozhikode, Kannur and Kasaragod – are on yellow alert on Saturday and Sunday for isolated heavy rainfall (6.4 cm to 11.5 cm in a 24-hour period).

A low pressure area is likely to form over the northwest and adjoining west-central part of the Bay of Bengal around August 7. An extended range forecast of the IMD also pointed to the possibility of another low pressure area likely over the Bay region around August 13 or 14.

Crop loss

The heavy rainfall over the past few days have destroyed agricultural crops in 2,755.81 hectares across the State, affecting 26,059 farmers, as per a crop loss report prepared by the Agriculture department.

The losses were reported during the period from July 31 to August 5, and pegs the estimated loss at ₹73.44 crore. Ernakulam has suffered the heaviest loss as per the report. Losses in the district have been pegged at ₹18.08 crore.

Among the crops, the heaviest losses were reported in banana, vegetables (including cool season veggies), tapioca, paddy, coconut, cardamom and rubber plantations.

The Animal Husbandry department has estimated losses to the sector at ₹42.85 lakh. In all, 574 animals have been relocated to 40 camps. Minister for Animal Husbandry J. Chinchurani said her department had given a proposal to the Disaster Management department for making available compensation to the farmers.

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