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Landslide in Kerala leaves 13 dead, toll to go up


In an unfortunate incident, 13 people lost their lives and over 60 are missing after heavy rainfall resulted in a landslide in Kerala’s Idukki district on Friday. Police said the landslide happened in Rajamalai area–25 km away from the tourist town of Munnar.

Twelve people have been rescued so far. They are undergoing treatment at a local hospital in Munnar. The death toll is likely to go up.

Not sure how many people still trapped, says police

Police clarified that 70-80 people lived in the area where the landslide happened. They added that they are not sure of how many more people are still trapped under the mud.

District officials said a bridge connecting the area swept away due to heavy rainfall on Thursday. The same has made access to the area difficult. The rescue operations have also been hampered due to the weather condition and the tough terrain.

50-member special task force sent

Apart from an NDRF team that has reached the site, a 50-member special task force of the Kerala fire services has been sent. The team comprises of rescuers equipped for carrying out rescue operations at night, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said.

Second rescue team enroute

The chief minister tweeted that a second rescue team in Thrissur has been asked to join the rescue operations and is on its way to the site. This apart, the CM has instructed forest, revenue officials and police personnel to join rescue efforts.

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The chief minister has also sought the assistance from Indian Air Force in the rescue and relief operations.

Hospitals asked to be ready for emergencies

Kerala health minister KK Shailaja has asked all hospitals nearby the landslide site to remain prepared for treating survivors. She said that a mobile medical team has been sent to Idukki and more such teams will be sent, if required.

Adding, the health minister said, 15 ambulances have been sent for shifting the survivors to hospitals.

IMD forecasts heavy rainfall

The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has predicted heavy to very heavy rainfall for Idukki district for the next 48 hours. The weather department has also warned of heavy rainfall in 11 other districts of the state in the next 24 hours. These districts include Wayanad and Malappuram.


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