New Delhi, Jul 20: As many as 1.18 lakh people have sought refuge in relief camps across Kerala, as rains continued to lash several parts of the state in varied intensity, official sources said on Friday. The second spell of monsoon rains has so far claimed 39 lives in the southern state. The South-West Monsoon had set in over Kerala on May 29. Also Read - THESE States in India Have Imposed Lockdown, Other Restrictions This Month

A total 50,836 people are now in 212 relief camps opened in Alappuzha while 37,657 are in 164 camps in neighbouring Kottayam, the two worst-hit districts in the state, till this morning, they said. Also Read - Kerala Imposes Full Lockdown From May 8 Amid COVID Surge, Exempts Essential Services

Unabated rains over the past few days have affected life in Kottayam, Alappuzha, Ernakulam and Idukki districts in Kerala. At least 14 people have died in the past 10 days. Also Read - UK Variant Dominant in North India, Double Mutant in Maharashtra, Gujarat; COVID Spreads Tentacles in Southern States | Highlights

There was no respite from waterlogging at many places in the districts. People including women and children, moving in waist-deep water, is a common sight now in many places. As major roads are flooded and even state-run KSRTC buses have stopped services in many places, people were stranded in many areas of Alappuzha, including Muttar and Kainakari.

Scarcity of safe drinking water and possible threat of water-borne disease are also a cause of worry for the locals. The meteorological department here has forecast heavy to very heavy rainfall at one or two places in the state till tomorrow.

Strong winds mainly from westerly direction with speeds occasionally reaching 35-45 kmph gusting to 60 kmph were likely along and off Kerala coast and over Lakshadweep area, it said.

Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh had assured in the Lok Sabha that the Centre will take a favourable approach to the calamity. Nearly 34,000 people have been shifted to relief camps after flood water inundated low-lying areas due to heavy rains that have lashed the state for the past one week. As many as 34,693 people from 8,033 families were shifted to 265 relief camps across the state.