The India Meteorological Department on Thursday withdrew the red alert for eight districts, including Chennai, as the depression that led to heavy rainfall in most places in Tamil Nadu began to cross the coast between the state capital and Puducherry, reported The Hindu.
The other districts where the red alert was withdrawn are Tiruvallur, Ranipet, Vellore, Salem, Kallakurichi, Tirupattur and Tiruvannamalai.
The weather agency predicted heavy rainfall at isolated places in Tamil Nadu, Puducherry, coastal Andhra Pradesh, the Rayalaseema region, south interior Karnataka and Kerala on Friday.
So far, 14 people have died due to heavy rain in Tamil Nadu, ANI reported.
Meanwhile, flight services that were earlier suspended at the Chennai airport have resumed. The Airport Authority of India has asked passengers to contact their airlines for timings of their flight.
The heavy rain brought has Chennai to a standstill. Photos from the city showed submerged cars, uprooted trees and residents being rescued on rubber boats.
Due to the heavy rainfall, power supply has been disconnected in 36,000 homes in Chennai, according to Tamil news channel Puthiya Thalaimurai TV.
Chennai Corporation Commissioner Gagandeep S Bedi told ANI that the city may receive over 250 millimetres of rain in the next two days.
“We have taken [a] lot of steps, we have mobilised additional pumps on hiring and have around 492 pumps in major pump category apart from other pumps,” he said. “We have already stationed them in low-lying areas.”
Bedi added that the civic body has stationed 46 boats in various parts of the city to prepare for a possible flood situation. As many as 200 medical camps have been set up as well, he added.
Rescue operations were under way in Chennai. “[Rescue] teams came from Pudukkottai, Salem, Ramanathapuram and Thanjavur,” the city’s Fire Station Officer Senthil Rajkumar told ANI. “Around 150 personnel have come to Chennai for rescue operations.”
High-power motors were being used to drain the water out from 53 areas, The Indian Express reported. Currently, 13 subways are flooded.
By Thursday, Minister for Revenue and Disaster Management KKSSR Ramachandran said that over 12,300 people had been moved to 229 relief camps, reported The Hindu.
More than 500 residential areas in Chennai have been reportedly flooded. The civic body’s helplines recorded 3,800 complaints related to flooding on Thursday, the highest so far this monsoon, according to The New Indian Express.
Several roads, including Rajamannar Salai in KK Nagar, Sivaswamy Salai in Mylapore, Gandhi Irwin to Nair Point, 70 Feet Road in Peravallur, Dr Ambedkar Road, Perambur Barracks Road, Tower Clock and Mullai Nagar Bridge in Vyasarpadi, were closed to the public.
Rainfall lashes Andhra Pradesh
Meanwhile, heavy rain lashed the districts of Prakasam, Nellore, Chittoor and Kadapa in Andhra Pradesh, reported PTI.
The national and the state disaster response forces have been deployed in Nellore and Chittoor districts for rescue and relief operations.
Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy has directed the district collectors to open relief camps and shift the people there from vulnerable areas.
“Another low-pressure area in Bay of Bengal could bring more showers in south coastal districts on November 17,” he said. “So, people living in low-lying areas and the farming community have to be cautious”
According to the weather agency, a low-pressure area was forming was likely to form over Bay of Bengal around Saturday.
On Wednesday, rains and waterlogging disrupted normal life for the fourth day in parts of Chennai and other coastal districts of Tamil Nadu, The Hindu reported. From 8.30 am to 8 am, the Ennore port recorded 5 centimetres of rainfall, while the Cheyyur town in Chengalpattu received a downpour of 4 centimetres.
Heavy rain was also reported in Chennai’s Nungambakkam (3.3 centimetres), MRC Nagar, Villivakkam and Anna University (3 centimetres).
Chief Minister MK Stalin said that the state government will assess the impact of the rain in the next two days before approaching the Union government for financial support, according to The Hindu. He added that his administration has been identifying areas prone to waterlogging and working on preventing it.
“We have completed about 50 to 60%,” he said. “And there are more. Once the rainy season is over, we will resolve it permanently.”
Stalin formed a panel of six ministers to examine the damage to the crops in the state and submit a report to the state government for compensation.
Meanwhile, 53 out of 90 key reservoirs in Tamil Nadu had crossed 76% storage as on Wednesday, PTI reported. “Out of the 14,138 lakes, storage in 9,153 waterbodies has crossed 50 per cent and 3,691 lakes have crossed 100 per cent,” a government release said.