Central team in Kerala to assess rain damage

As the second month of the monsoon season draws to a close in Kerala, a team of officials from the Union Home Ministry on Sunday commenced the tour to assess rain-related damage in the Kuttanad region.

The four-member team headed by Joint Secretary V Vumlunmang is expected to visit affected districts, including Kottayam and Kozhikode.

The team, accompanied by Minister for Revenue Adoor Prakash, visited people in the relief camps and inspected inundated pockets in the region. Thousands of houses in the Kuttanad region were submerged in the rain that wreaked havoc in June.

Though the water level has receded in some of the upper regions, hundreds of families continue to live in relief camps. Kuttanad is the worst-hit region this monsoon. Till Sunday, rainfall across the state was 42 per cent above normal.

Apart from the region spread over the districts of Kottayam, Alappuzha and Pathanamthitta, coastal belts along Thiruvananthapuram and the northern districts have suffered substantial rain-related damage.

The Met department figures till July 17 show that Kannur district recorded 2,133.7 mm of rainfall, the highest so far. Ernakulam, Kottayam and Idukki top the list of areas that received excess rainfall with 63 per cent, 62 per cent and 51 per cent above normal respectively.

According to official figures, around 120 people have died and 500 houses have been destroyed. Severe crop damage has led to losses in the excess of Rs 100 crore. The state is seeking around Rs 480-crore aid from the Centre to meet compensation and relief expenses.

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