The National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) resumed rescue operations in Idukki’s Rajamala on Monday morning as the death toll in the landslide incident rose to 43.
In a tweet, SN Pradhan, the Director-General of NDRF said that teams are battling odds of rain, slush and terrain.
“#KeralaRains2020 UPDATE 10/08/2020 #Landslide,Munnar @NDRFHQ work on site w/State/local agencies. Battling odds of rain/slush/terrain etc. OPS RESUMED SINCE MORNING TODAY,” Pradhan tweeted.
Two NDRF teams, a full unit of Idukki fire and rescue team, a team each from Kottayam, Thiruvananthapuram, and a team which received special training are leading the rescue operations in Idukki’s Rajamala, the District Information Office had said on Sunday.
It added that 105 members of Kerala Armed Police, 21 members of local police, and 10 members of Rapid Action Force were also present on the spot of the landslide.
On Friday, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan had announced an ex-gratia of Rs 5 lakhs to kin of the deceased.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had also expressed his condolences over deaths due to landslide and announced an ex-gratia of Rs 2 lakhs each from Prime Minister’s National Relief Fund (PMNRF) to the kin of deceased.
Heavy rains in several parts of Kerala triggered floods and landslides which have wreaked havoc in the region over the past few days.
Meanwhile, the Opposition has targeted the ruling CPM, saying that the compensation declared for families of the victims is not adequate.
On Saturday, the government declared a compensation of Rs 10 lakh each for the families of those who died in the airport mishap in Kozhikode. And, the compensation declared for families of those killed in the landslide is Rs 5 lakh each.
Union Minister V Muraleedharan, who visited Rajamala, told the media that CM Pinarayi Vijayan should not “neglect the poor people”. “There should not be any discrimination in giving compensation,’’ he said.
The Chief Minister countered the allegation, saying the compensation is only an initial announcement and that the government would ensure all support for the victims.
With the rivers overflowing, fear has gripped the downstream towns in Kottayam, Pathanamthitta and Alappuzha districts in central Kerala.