The New Indian Express , 01 June 2006

Sea erosion, flooding in district

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The torrential rains that have been lashing the district during the last five days have led to sea-erosion and flooding. Several low-lying areas were inundated and trees got uprooted. Landslides were also reported from some areas.

As per official figures, the district suffered a loss of Rs 382 lakh owing to the damage to property and standing crops. Thirteen houses collapsed and 329 houses were partially damaged in the city limits alone.

About 150 affected people are being provided relief at the rescue centre at Poonthura St Thomas Secondary School here.

Revenue Minister K P Rajendran visited the worst hit coastal areas including Poonthura, Panathura and Adimalathura and directed the officials to strengthen the sea wall, especially at Poonthura.

He visited the rescue camps and asked the officials to distribute only chlorinated water to the inmates. He also directed the officials to open more rescue camps if necessary.

The Minister promised the local residents to take all steps to construct a sea wall at Beemapally for an estimated cost of Rs 35 lakh. To prevent floods in Poonthura, the bunds at Thiruvallam will be strengthened, the Minister said.

Traffic was affected at busy junctions in the city particularly at Palayam, East Fort and Thycaud owing to overflowing of drains.

At three places in the city - at Thycaud Government Hospital junction, Swathi Thirunal Sanskrit College junction and at Sastri Nagar in Karamana - traffic was affected as trees got uprooted and fell on the road.

The 24-hour Natural Calamities Control Room at the Secretariat, set up by the Disaster Management authorities, can be contacted at the phone numbers: 0471-2333198, 0471-2518700 or at the toll free number - 1070.

Meanwhile, as directed by the Electricity Minister A K Balan, officials of the Kerala State Electricity Board (KSEB) have begun maintenance work on the severed electric wires. In case of monsoon-related diseases, the crisis management cell can be contacted over phone no 2471291.