Floods disrupt normal life in Tamil Nadu


Chennai : Incessant rains over the past five days have so far claimed 71 lives, disrupted normal life all over Tamil Nadu and inundated several cities, officials said Friday.

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According to officials, Cooum and Adyar – two swollen rivers passing through the city – inundated low-lying areas along their banks as lakes overflowed.

Overflowing catchment areas in the northern and southern outskirts of here and inundation of several cities affected people.

“Though the flood situation following state wide heavy rains was grim in over 11 districts, the government has rushed aid to all displaced persons under the directions of Chief Minister (M. Karunanidhi) who visited several parts of (the capital) Chennai to oversee relief operations and accord solace to the suffering masses,” an official press statement said.

The statement added that the rain has so far claimed 71 lives and the losses in various parts of the state to standing crops and infrastructure were being assessed.

While rains continued unabated in all the coastal districts, floods cut the temple city of Chidambaram from the rest of the state.

In four coastal districts in central Tamil Nadu, losses to standing paddy crops due to inundation were estimated to be over Rs.1.8 billion, statements from various administrative units said.

Electricity in three major towns along the coast including Cuddalore, 250 km south of here, remained disconnected to prevent electrocution, the statement added.

Following the weakening of the cyclone that crossed the coast Thursday and weakened into a low pressure trough, rains are expected to abate, a met office spokesman told reporters.

Meanwhile, Leader of Opposition J. Jayalalitha, in a statement, slammed the government’s “inadequate response to accord succour to the masses suffering from a surfeit of rains and shortage of electricity”.