The number of deaths caused due to rain-related incidents in Tamil Nadu has risen to 12, ANI reported on Wednesday, quoting the state’s Revenue and Disaster Management Minister KKSSR Ramachandran.
Tamil Nadu has received more than 50% above normal rainfall between October 1 and November 10, the government authorities said, according to PTI. Fifty-three of the 90 reservoirs in the state were filled to 76% of their capacity.
The India Meterological Department said that a low-pressure area had formed over Chennai and nearby regions. The weather system is expected to turn into a depression on Thursday over North of Tamil Nadu bringing widespread rain to the state for the next three to four days.
The weather agency advised the fishermen to not venture into Bay of Bengal and Gulf of Mannar along and off the coasts of Tamil Nadu, Puducherry and south Andhra Pradesh till Thursday.
The Greater Chennai Corporation has urged the residents of Chennai to step out of their homes only in case of emergencies and ensure they have enough food and water.
More than 1,700 people have been moved to relief camps so far.
Tamil Nadu has been battered by heavy rain from the night of November 6, leaving several areas inundated. Images on social media showed cars submerged under water, uprooted trees and people being rescued on rubber boats in parts of Chennai.
For flood-related grievances, the Greater Chennai Corporation has released these helpline numbers: 044-25619206, 044-25619207, 044-25619208.
The meteorological department has issued a red alert for Chennai, Tiruvallur, Ranipet and other districts for today and tomorrow.
Greater Chennai Corporation Commissioner Gagandeep Singh said the city is expected to receive between 150 and 200 millimetres of rainfall on Wednesday afternoon, NDTV reported. He said over 500 motors and 60 pumps had been placed in low-lying areas.
“Measures to distribute food, generator sets [for electricity supply] and meet other infrastructure needs are also ready,” he told the news channel. “Fifty-three boats have been deployed.”
Meanwhile, Nagapattinam received a huge 31 cm of rainfall in 24 hours, as of 8.30 am on Wednesday.
Eight flights were cancelled from the Chennai airport on Wednesday, The News Minute reported.
The government announced a holiday for schools and colleges in Chennai, Kancheepuram, Thiruvallur, Chengalpattu, Cuddalore, Nagapattinam, Thanjavur, Thiruvarur and Mayiladuthurai on Wednesday and Thursday because of the weather forecast.
As authorities issued warnings about more rain, the Tamil Nadu government set up 434 “siren towers” to alert officials about floods and other emergencies, NDTV reported.
Officials are also working with telecom networks to ensure mobile connectivity is not affected during this period.
Tamil Nadu’s disaster management minister expressed fear about more losses if the rain intensified again. “In Chennai, more nodal officers are posted for review and rescue operations,” Ramachandran said.
Tamil Nadu Chief minister MK Stalin on Tuesday inspected affected areas of Kolathur and Villivakkam in Chennai. He said the state government said it will provide free food through Amma Canteens till the rain retreats.
Meanwhile, Opposition leader and former Deputy Chief Minister O Panneerselvam wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to ask the Union finance ministry to release funds to Tamil Nadu for rescue and rehabilitation measures.
Panneerselvam said the heavy rain in Chennai and neighbouring areas has led to a disastrous situation in the state, according to The Times of India.