More Heavy Rain Hits Tamil Nadu as Prime Minster Approves Flood Relief

Parts of the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu have been battered by yet more heavy rain over the last 24 hours.

The state is still recovering from the devastating floods that struck between 09 and 17 November 2015 that left at least 70 people dead. According to the latest figures, 169 people have died in floods and flood related incidents in Tamil Nadu since October this year.

More Rain Prompts Flood Warnings in Tamil Nadu

India Meteorological Department (IMD) said that there will be heavy rains in coastal Tamil Nadu and many interior districts in the state as a trough of low pressure over southwest Bay of Bengal.

WMO figures say that 133.1 mm of rainfall was recorded in Cuddalore in 24 hours between 22 and 23 November 2015, and 194 mm during the same period in Karaikal, Puducherry.

India’s public service broadcaster, DD News, said earlier today that heavy rain is lashing coastal districts of Thoothukudi and Cuddalore, as well as interior districts including Theni and Nilgiris. DD News said the heavy rain was crippling normal life in Tamil Nadu.

A flood alert has been issued for nine villages in Kanchipuram district as water is being released from Madurantakam lake. Flood alerts have also been issued in many low lying areas as excess water will be released from Vaigai Dam.

169 Killed in Floods and Rain Since October

Earlier today Tamil Nadu’s Chief Minister, J Jayalalithaa, sent a report to the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi with a detailed memorandum on recent flood damages in the state, seeking urgent financial assistance from central government. The Chief Minister also asked for a central team to be deputed immediately to make an on-the-spot assessment of damages.

In her report on the Tamil Nadu flood situation, J Jayalalithaa said that 169 lives have been lost in various rain-related incidents since 01 October, 2015.

She said that a deep depression of ‘high intensity’ in the Bay of Bengal had hit the Tamil Nadu coast near Marakkanam on November 10, 2015, causing extremely heavy rains, particularly in the four northern coastal districts of Cuddalore,┬áKancheepuram, Chennai and Tiruvallur. Neyveli in Cuddalore district, saw 437 mm of rain fall on 09 November.

Chief Minister says Adequate Precautionary Measures Were Taken

In her report, the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister also sought to assure the Prime Minister that adequate precautionary measures had been taken, despite the loss of so many lives.

“Based on the forecast received from Indian Meteorological Department and the alerts received from the National Disaster Management Agency, adequate precautionary measures were taken which minimised loss to life and property,” she said, adding state-level agencies and the local administration in the affected districts were put on high alert.

Prime Minister Sanctions Flood Relief

In response to the request by the Government of Tamil Nadu, Indian Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi today instructed the release of financial assistance worth Rs. 939.63 crore immediately to Tamil Nadu to assist it in dealing with the situation arising from the floods.

File photos: Floods in Chennai, 2005. Photo: Prince Roy, Licensed under Creative Commons.
File photos: Floods in Chennai, 2005. Photo: Prince Roy, Prince Roy
Licensed under Creative Commons.