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Rediff.com  » News » Cyclone Michaung leaves trail of death and destruction

Cyclone Michaung leaves trail of death and destruction

Source: PTI   -  Edited By: Utkarsh Mishra
Last updated on: December 05, 2023 23:27 IST
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At least 12 people lost their lives in various rain-related incidents in and around Chennai even as personnel on fishing boats and farm tractors were engaged in rescuing stranded people in the city on Tuesday. 

IMAGE: A view of the waterlogged area following heavy rainfall triggered by cyclone Michaung, in Chennai on Monday, December 4, 2023. Photograph: ANI Photo

The city and adjoining districts faced relentless rains on Monday as Michaung loomed over the north coastal areas of Tamil Nadu.

After being pounded by rains the whole of Monday, Chennai witnessed some respite on Tuesday even as the city struggled to cope with large scale water logging, power cuts and disruption in mobile services.

Apart from the 12 persons who had lost their lives, eleven others, who sustained injuries in rain-related incidents, were receiving treatment in various hospitals, officials said..

 

In Muthialpet locality in the city's outskirts, 54 families were rescued, and a woman who had just given birth was relocated to a safer place from Saligramam in the city.

IMAGE: NDRF personnel rescue people from the waterlogged areas of the Varadharajapuram area following heavy rainfall, in Chennai, December 5, 2023. Photograph: ANI Photo

Several District Disaster Response Teams were formed to carry out relief work in all rain-affected areas across Chennai.

The Air Force Station, Tambaram and the Navy joined the rescue and rehabilitation works.

Two helicopters were pressed in for service in rain affected areas while Navy's divers, swimmers and inflatable boats ventured into the operation.

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin said on Tuesday morning that across the nine affected districts, including Chennai, a total of 61,666 relief camps were established.

Approximately 11 lakh food packets and one lakh milk packets have been distributed so far, he said.

The Chennai Corporation has brought in 5000 workers from other districts for flood mitigation works in the city.

Photograph: ANI Photo

These workers utilised farm tractors and fishing boats in flooded areas for rescue operations and distributing relief materials.

Tamil Nadu chief secretary Shiv Das Meena said on Tuesday evening that 80 percent of power supply and 70 percent of mobile networks have already been restored.

Das told reporters that there were 42,747 cell phone towers in Chennai of which 70 percent were currently operational. The rest of the 30 percent was not operational due to lack of power, he said.

Schools and colleges will remain closed in and around Chennai on Wednesday, he added.

Air services that were suspended to and from Chennai airport on Monday, partially resumed on Tuesday with domestic and international flights landing and taking off albeit with delays reported in some sectors.

A Southern Railway press release stated that they were trying to resume all train services to and from Chennai by Wednesday. The services from and to Chennai were completely shut down on Monday.

Photograph: ANI Photo

More than 250 people from low-lying areas found refuge at a school camp in Kotturpuram.

Additionally, 22 passengers stranded after their local bus got stuck in rainwater, were transferred to a relief camp set up at the Middle School in Pallavaram.

Since Tuesday morning, most parts of Chennai experienced a respite from rains, allowing officials to focus on rescue and relief operations in affected areas.

During a press conference at the Chennai Corporation headquarters on Tuesday morning, Stalin stated that relief measures were being undertaken on a war footing.

Stalin mentioned that across the nine affected districts, including Chennai, a total of 61,666 relief camps were established. Approximately 11 lakh food packets and one lakh milk packets have been distributed so far, he said.

The Chennai Corporation has brought in 5000 workers from other districts for flood mitigation works in the city. These workers utilised farm tractors and fishing boats in flooded areas such as Periamet and other parts of north Chennai for rescue operations and distributing relief materials.

Residents in areas like suburban Tambaram, Ashok Nagar, Kattupakkam, and Perungudi complained about the lack of power restoration despite the rain ceasing for several hours.

Mukesh Chordia, a resident of Ashok Nagar, mentioned that although water had receded from the main roads in the area, power supply had not been restored.

Press Trust of India (PTI) Chennai's Deputy News Editor Annie Thomas residing in Koymabedu near the city's main outstation bus terminus said, "Last time (2015), after three days of being stuck due to waterlogging, we waded out in thigh-level water and stayed in serviced apartment for a day, then at a friend's place for two days."

Thomas added, "This time our apartment complex is once again surrounded by water. We are on the second floor. There is no power supply and I am conserving the charge on my phone as much as possible. I don't know how long tap water supply will last."

Stalin informed reporters that the power situation was being restored in phases. He noted that the handling of the situation was far better compared to the 2015 floods when the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam was in power.

Stalin pointed out that the 2015 floods were caused by an unplanned release of one lakh cusecs from the Chembarambakkam reservoir in the city's outskirts into the Adyar river, leading to man-made floods.

He said that the current situation, natural floods caused by torrential rains, was efficiently managed by the state.

He explained that during the current spell of rains, only a maximum of 8,000 cusecs of water was released into the Adyar and Cooum rivers from the Chembarambakkam reservoir in a planned manner.

Among the 12 people who lost their lives in rain-related incidents were a 60-year-old woman in Foreshore Estate and a 48-year-old man who worked as a head constable at the Integral Coach Factory police station, according to an official release.

Further detailing the DDRT's measures, the official release mentioned the rescue of three individuals trapped when a makeshift generator room collapsed due to heavy rains. Additionally, three members of a family were safely evacuated after their house was submerged in water in Adyar.

The release also noted the closure of nearly 16 subways due to inundation and the removal of fallen trees at 60 locations.

Meanwhile, minister for milk and dairy development T Mano Thangaraj stated that the production of five lakh milk units at the Ambattur dairy of Tamil Nadu Cooperative Milk Producers' Federation Ltd, popularly known as 'AAVIN,' was affected as the factory was completely submerged due to rainfall.

Thangaraj added that the AAVIN diaries in Sholinganallur and Madhavaram were operating at full capacity, supplying milk to Chennai from factories located in other districts.

He assured, 'A sufficient amount of milk and milk products are available', while urging retail outlets to cooperate in distributing milk to consumers.

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Source: PTI  -  Edited By: Utkarsh Mishra© Copyright 2024 PTI. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PTI content, including by framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent.
 
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