Chennai/Puducherry/Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala continues to remain on alert on Saturday as India Meteorological Department (IMD) warned of heavy to very heavy rainfall in the state till October 8. Meanwhile, all the government schools and colleges in Tamil Nadu remained closed on Friday as parts of Chennai, Kancheepuram, Tiruvallur, Tirunelveli and Tuticorin in the state experienced heavy rainfall for the second consecutive day. Heavy rains also lashed parts of Puducherry.
In Kerala, a red alert for Idukki and Malappuram districts was issued by the IMD for October 7. The shutters of the Neyyar and Aruvikara dams and Malampuzha dam in Palakkad were lifted on Friday to release water in view of the forecast of heavy rain in the coming days. Kochi, Thrissur and Malappuram districts in the state were lashed by rainfall on Friday. As a precautionary measure, Chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan has ordered the deployment of five teams of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) in Wayanad, Palakkad, Idukki, Pathanamthitta and Kozhikode.
The shutters of Idukki-Cheruthoni dam, Pamba, Moozhiar and Kakki dams in Pathanamthitta, Banasurasagar dam in Wayanad, Sholayar, Peechi and Chimini dams in Thrissur district would be opened, if necessary. The government has also issued a warning to people living on the banks of rivers including the Pamba and Periyar.
Furthermore, the Southern Naval Command has deployed its naval ships and Dornier aircraft deployed off Kerala coast and L&M Islands, to broadcast the weather warning to fishing boats at sea and advise them to return to harbour. All out efforts are being made for the safety of local fishermen, a defence spokesman was quoted as saying.
In Tamil Nadu, Chief Minister K Palaniswami conducted a review meeting at Chennai on Friday in the wake of IMD’s forecast of heavy to very heavy rainfall in the state. He instructed the collectors of coastal districts to ensure that the fishermen who have ventured into the sea safely return back. As per an official release, the officials were instructed to provide medical assistance, to have a provision of adequate stocks of food and clothes which will be helpful in the event of evacuation of people to relief camps.
On the other hand, the union territory of Puducherry has received a heavy rainfall recorded at 9.5cm during the last 24 hours ending 8.30 am on Friday. Following the downpour, waterlogging was reported from various areas. Farmers were also affected as their farmlands containing crops like paddy were waterlogged.
(With inputs from PTI)