Kerala Floods Update: A little respite as water recedes, flights resume from Naval Base

Commercial flight operations to flood-hit Kochi resumed on Monday from the Naval airstrips as the weather office said that heavy rains are likely to subside in the flood-hit state.

The red alert in the state that had been in place was finally removed on Sunday, with the rainfall decreasing over the last three days, the weather office said. But some districts were still under orange and yellow alerts as light rain has been forecast at least till Saturday.

States including Karnataka, Odisha, Delhi, Punjab and Uttar Pradesh have stepped in to provide monetary relief while many organisations like IAS officers from Odisha made contributions to the relief operations.

ALSO READ: Air India lends a helping hand for Kerala

Almost eight flights landed, early Monday morning, at the INS Garuda naval air station in Kochi, with the first one being an Alliance Air ATR plane.

The main Kochi airport will reopen on August 26 as the country’s seventh-busiest airport is still flooded with water. Across Kerala, relief teams are running against time to ensure food and medicines reach people stranded in their homes.

On Sunday, an Alliance Air plane landed at the Kochi naval base carrying a team of officers from the aviation regulator DGCA, the Airports Authority of India and other flight safety officers to test whether the base could be used for commercial flight landings. The joint team then gave the go-ahead for the flight operations at the Navy’s air station in Kochi.

 

ALSO READ: Kerala floods: Odisha CM announces additional financial aid

The Railways also announced resumption of operations on some routes including Nizamuddin- Ernakulam Mangala Lakshadweep Express, Mangalore-Nagercoil Parasuram Express, Jamnagar–Tirunelveli Express and Lokmanya Tilak Terminus-Thiruvananthapuram Netravathi Express from Shoranur to run as per normal schedule.

Other things happenings in Kerala

  • A joint team of the centre and the civil aviation ministry gave the go-ahead for the flight operations at the Navy’s air station in Kochi.
  • The Indian Commercial Pilots’ Association or ICPA has told Prime Minister Narendra Modi that they are willing to fly to flood-hit Kerala without taking any payment.
  • As floodwater starts receding in some areas of Kerala, the bigger concern is lack of clean drinking water and spread of diseases due to mosquito infestation, especially in Kochi and Thiruvananthapuram.
  • No rain in central Kerala’s Thrissur in the last 24 hours. People displaced by the floods have started returning homes.
  • More than 3,700 medical camps have been set up across Kerala, the health ministry said in a statement on Sunday.
  • Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan has said the state has enough food to feed the flood-affected people. Transporting food and relief material, however, remains a challenge as long stretches of several important highways are flooded.
  • Union Tourism Minister KJ Alphons on August 20 said that the authorities have housed at least one million people in scores of relief camps set up by the administration across the state.
  • Kerala received over 250 per cent more rain than normal between August 8 and 15. The state’s authorities had to release water from 35 dams where the water had accumulated to their critical capacity.

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