What Kerala told Modi on floods?

What Kerala told Modi on floods?

Prime Minister Narendra Modi during a review meeting on his arrival to take stock of the flood situation, in Kochi on Saturday. PTI

One-third of its villages badly affected, 98,000 km of roads damaged, 323 landslides, gates of its biggest dam in Idukki opened for the first time in 26 years, and sea backwash effect of a large magnitude and destructive effect for first time after Tsunami— Kerala is facing one of its worst crisis in the past hundred years.

This is what Kerala government told Prime Minister Narendra Modi about the situation following heavy rain and flood in the state as it pegged the losses at Rs 19,512.57 crore.

Sources said Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan and senior officials who briefed Modi told him that this was the second worst flood in Kerala's history since 1924 and at least 357 have lost their lives since May 29. Of this, 197 deaths occurred in the last one week alone.

While the state received 30% excess rainfall this monsoon, sources said the resultant landslides and floods have "directly affected" at least 500 out of 1,564 villages in the state while at least seven districts have been completely inundated.

Adding more woes, the state administration told Modi that sewerage and water supply systems have been damaged amid apprehensions that it could lead to health concerns.

As the water level rose, gates of all the major 42 dams in the state have been opened. The administration told Modi that "the Idukki reservoir gates were opened for the first time after a gap of 26 years".

They told Modi that the coastal areas are facing the sea's fury and are affected by sea backwash effect.

The backwash, which is the flow back of water while carrying some material back to the sea, of this "magnitude and destructive effect" has occurred for the first time after the 2004 Tsunami, the state told the prime minister.

Elaborating on the losses, sources said the state has told the prime minister that a whopping 97,914 km of roads and 134 bridges are damaged.

When it comes to power sector, 76,611 electric poles, 10,076 transformers and 90,488 km of electric lines have been damaged.

More worries are in store as warehouses with food stocks and intermediary godowns are inundated.

The Kerala government has asked for a replacement of the inundated state government procured-rice from local mills, PDS wheat, cereals and kerosene.