Rains subside in Kodagu, rehabilitation work gains speed

Team Udayavani, Aug 22, 2018, 10:50 AM IST

Madikeri: With rains subsiding, relief and rehabilitation work gained momentum today inthe flood and landslips ravaged Kodagu district ofKarnataka, bordering Kerala.

With operations to rescue those stranded by and large completed, officials said thedistrict administration was now focusing on providing reliefand rehabilitation to those at relief camps, clearingblocked roads and restoring power.

The torrential rains that lashed the district lastweek left a huge trail of destruction, claiming atleast 12 lives and rendering thousands homeless.

With all major roads in Kodagu blocked, amassive rescue operation had been underway for the last coupleof days to rescue those stranded in isolated and hillyterrain.

As of yesterday, over 4,320 people were rescuedand brought to relief centres.

District in-charge Minister Sa Ra Mahesh said, “tillnow efforts were on to rescue stranded people safely. Now the work will have to begin on rebuilding their lives.”

He also requested people to generouslycontribute to the Chief Minister’s Relief Fund so that it can be used to rebuild lives of people who are renderedhomeless.

Authorities also decided to use drones to find if anyone was still stranded or missing, and also to assess the damage.

Officials said 41 relief centres in Kodagu and nine in Dakshina Kannada, another flood-hit district, have been set up where 6,620 people are sheltered.

The administration also decided to boostthe morale of those who lost all belongings in the natural calamity by enlisting the help of mental healthspecialists to conduct counselling and talk sessions at relief camps.

Meanwhile, speaking to reporters in Bengaluru, Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy said the rains have subsided in Kodaguand he has asked the district in-charge minister and districtDeputy Commissioner to look into certain lapses in relief camps.

He said the administration has been asked toprovide protection to houses abandoned by people by deploying home guards,after reports emerged about alleged incidents of theft.

The state government today deputed an AdditionalDeputy Commissioner to Kodagu district to assist the district administration.

Along with the District in-charge minister and district in-charge Secretary, DGP Fire and Emergency Services,two Additional Director Generals of Police and oneAdditional Chief Secretary are camping in Kodaguto oversee relief work.

Also, a total of 1,725 specially trained experts fromthe Karnataka State Reserve Police, National and State Disaster Response Forces, Army, Navy and Air force, NCC, Home guards and District Administration have been deployed in rescue and relief operations.

The Defence departmentsaid two Mi-17 helicopters of the Training Command, Indian Air Force, continued to conduct flood relief operations inKodagu region, operating from Kushalnagar, Periapatna and Harangi.

Helicopters undertook aerial recce and rescue missionsin flood affected areas of Monnangeri and Jodupala to identify the modalities of ground rescue in close coordination with district officials, it said, adding that a close liaison was alsobeing maintained with Karnataka NDRF team for airlift ofessential relief supplies to affected areas.

Meanwhile, Karnataka state BJP chief B S Yeddyurappa today said he would meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi tomorrow and discuss with him about the situation in Kodagu district.

Former Chief Minister Siddaramaiahalong with Pradesh Congress Committee Chief Dinesh Gundu Raowill visit flood affected areas of Kodagu district toassess the situation.

A large amount of relief material from various parts of the state is coming to Kodagu.

With most materials being food items, the administration urged people to alsosend day-to-day items like plastic buckets, raincoats,sanitary napkins, plastic mats, soaps, shampoo, toothpaste,bedsheets and blankets and inner garments, among other things.

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