Kerala rains: Atleast 10 missing in Kottayam

Kottayam/Idukki, Oct 16 (PTI):
Heavy rains pounded south and central Kerala on Saturday wreaking havoc in many parts with some people feared missing in the landslides that occurred in hilly areas bordering Kottayam and Idukki districts prompting the state government to seek the assistance of the Army and Air Force for rescue operations.
The Chief Minister’s Office has informed that help from the Air Force has been sought for rescue in the hilly areas bordering Kottayam and Idukki districts where landslides have been reported isolating a few families.
Officials said landslides have been reported around the areas of Koottickal and Peruvanthanam–the two hilly areas falling under Kottayam and Idukki districts respectively –and at least 10 people are feared missing in the incidents.
A defence spokesperson said the Indian Air Force and Indian Army stationed in Kerala have deployed their assets.
“Mi-17 and Sarang Helicopters are already in standby mode to meet the requirements. All the bases under Southern Air Command have been put on high alert in view of the prevalent weather situation at Kerala”, the spokesperson said in a statement. “Indian Army has already deployed army personnel to the flood affected areas. One column consists of One Officer, 2 JCOs and 30 other ranks of army personnel already moved to Kanjirappally, Kottayam District from Pangode Military Station along with two Baut with OBM and other equipments under the leadership of Major Abin Paul.” She said the meeting with IAF and Army Officials with the state government authorities are still going on. Earlier, Minister for Cooperation and Registration V N Vasavan said at least three houses have been washed away in Kottayam district and some people feared missing.
“At least four landslips have been reported from various parts of Kottayam district. We have sought the assistance of the Airforce to rescue people who are stranded in the Koottickal area. We have received information about some people missing and over 60 waiting to be rescued as water entered their homes,” the Minister told PTI.
According to the latest update of the Indian Meteorological Department, the ‘Red Alert’ was sounded for six districts including Pathanamthitta, Kottayam, Ernakulam, Idukki, Thrissur and Palakkad districts.

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