Authorities in Kerala recovered three more bodies from the site of a landslide in a tea estate in Idukki district on Wednesday, taking the toll from the tragedy to 55, Onmanorama reported.
Operations led by the National Disaster Response Force continued for the sixth day to trace around 16 more people who are missing. Efforts are also being made to rescue those who may be trapped in the debris of the mudslide.
Idukki Collector H Dineshan said a total of 82 people have been affected.
The landslide happened at the Nayamakkad tea estate on August 7. Four layams, or workers quarters of the tea garden, were buried under debris after a hill crashed down due to heavy rain. Only 12 of the total 82 residents managed to escape.
A 50-member team comprised of fire and rescue officials, a team of the National Disaster Response Force and medical teams from Ernakulam and Kottayam, are leading the rescue operations. But they are facing difficulties since the heavy downpour and flooding have made the area inaccessible.
The estate is located about 30 km from Munnar, adjacent to the Eravikulam National Park, and can be accessed only through the national park. But since the park is closed and a bridge at Periyavarai connecting the areas was washed away, there is no direct access.
However, the search operations picked up pace on Wednesday after rainfall in the area decreased, according to The Indian Express.
Several states in India are facing flood-like situations due to incessant rains. In Assam, at least 136 people have died due to floods in the state, according to PTI. Of these, 110 were killed in flood-related incidents and 26 died in landslides.
However, the situation improved on Wednesday, as floodwaters receded from most parts of the state. But Dhemaji, Baksa and Morigaon districts continue to remain submerged, according to the State Disaster Management Authority’s bulletin from Wednesday.
A total of 14,405 people and 7,009 hectares cropland have been affected in these three districts. Dhemaji is the worst-hit district with 12,908 people affected, followed by Baksa where lives of 1,000 have been upended. In Morigain, 297 people have been hit by the calamity so far.
The flood situation in Bihar deteriorated on Wednesday after 2.16 lakh more people were affected by the calamity, according to the daily bulletin by the state Disaster Management Department. With this, the number of those affected by the deluge reached 77.18 lakh in 16 districts.
The toll from flood-related accidents in the state remained at 24. As many as 20 teams of the National Disaster Response Force and 13 of the State Disaster Response Fund have evacuated 5.47 lakh people from inundated areas in Bihar so far, it added.
Several rivers such as the Baghmati, Burhi Gandak, Kamlabalan and the Khiroi have been flowing above the danger level.
The India Meteorological Department’s regional office at Patna has forecast light to moderate rain in the catchment areas of all rivers on Thursday while heavy rain is likely at a few places in the catchment areas of the Gandak.
As many as 16 districts of Uttar Pradesh were affected by floods after several parts of the country received heavy rainfall. Chief Minister Adityanath on Wednesday directed officials to ensure sanitation and hygiene in relief camps set up in the deluge-hit areas, according to PTI.
The Sharda river in Lakhimpur Kheri’s Palliakalan, the Saryu at Barabanki’s Elgin Bridge, Ayodhya and Ballia’s Turtipar are flowing above the danger mark, Relief Commissioner Sanjay Goyel told the news agency.
Meanwhile, eastern parts of the state witnessed thunderstorms and lightning. The IMD said rains and thundershower are likely in many parts of the state on August 14 and August 15.
In Uttarakhand, water levels rose in several rivers on Thursday after the state witnessed heavy rainfall. The India Meteorological Department, the state is very likely to receive heavy to very heavy rain at isolated places in the coming two to three days, according to the Hindustan Times.
Heavy rains in Chamoli district have increased the water level of rivers while landslides have halted vehicular movement on Badrinath National Highway, District Magistrate of Chamoli Swati S Bhadauria told ANI.“Many roads were closed due to heavy rains, most of the places have been opened,” she added.
The State Disaster Management Center on Wednesday had warned about the possibility of heavy and very heavy rains in the state on Thursday. All District Magistrates have been directed to take precautionary measures in order to avoid accidents.
The United Nations on Tuesday said it would provide humanitarian assistance to the most vulnerable communities in India who have been worst-affected by heavy rain and flooding in the region. Meanwhile, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday held a virtual meeting with chief ministers of six states – Assam, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Karnataka and Kerala – to review the flood situation there.