As the biggest annual festival, "Onam," goes on, in India's southernmost flood-hit Kerala state, the state government is leaving no stone unturned, to ensure that the victims get basic life support without delay.
Though the state government has officially cancelled Onam celebrations this year, people in unaffected, or less-affected areas, could be seen in festive spirit, as colourful lightening were visible on houses or shopping complexes along the road stretches, connecting one of the worst affected districts, Alappuzha, to the state capital, Thiruvananthapuram.
According to media reports, the death toll in the devastating floods has reached 370. Besides, 33 people are still missing.
Efforts are on to provide special facilities at relief camps, till the flood-hit houses become habitable, said Kerala Chief Minister, Pinarayi Vijayan, after visiting relief camps at flood-stricken areas of Alappuzha, Pathanamthitta, Ernakulam and Thrissur. Immediate measures have been taken to remove slush and silt from flood-hit houses and to rebuild the damaged ones.
He announced that loans of up to 100,000 Indian Rupees (1,428 U.S. dollars) will be provided to the female head of family, and its interest will be borne by the government. A special food and rehab kit, including five kg of rice, will be distributed to those who return home from relief camps, after proper sanitation.
Currently there are 1,040,688 people belonging to 278,781 families staying in nearly 2,774 relief camps, which are mainly set up at local schools and colleges.
Steps are being taken to restore electricity in the flood-hit area. Of the 50 substations, which were affected by the deluge, 41 started functioning by Friday. Of the 16,158 transformers affected during the flood, 13,477 have been recharged and of the 2.6 million power connections which were disrupted, over two million have been restored.
Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK