Toll increases to 120; more rains forecast today
Chennai: The toll from rain-related incidents in Tamil Nadu increased to 120, as overnight rains lashed many parts of the city, raising fears of more inundation. However, a bright morning brought relief to the residents of the rain-drenched city, even as the weather office has forecast rains for November 21.
In a statement, Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa said nine persons had been killed in the last four days, with the victims mainly hailing from Chennai and Kancheepuram districts, and expressed sympathies with their families. She announced a relief of Rs four lakh each to the families of the victims.
Meanwhile, the Regional Weather office forecast rain in coastal and interior districts for the next 24 hours. Rains were particularly expected in the districts along Western Ghats, such as Theni and Nilgiris, SR Ramanan, Director, Regional Meterological Department, told reporters.
In the 24 hours ending at 8.30 AM today, various places in Nilgiris registered good spells of rain with Ketti and Coonoor in the district registering 12 cm and 11 cm respectively. Heavy vehicles factory in Avadi (Tiruvallore) received 12 cm while Poondi and Ponnamanalle in the same district registered 10 cm each.
A report from Udhagamandalam said vehicular traffic, both road and rail, was disrupted, following landslide at various places in the Nilgiris district, which is witnessing incessant rains since last evening.
The Nilgiris Mountain Rail was stopped at Kallar Railway station after land slides blocked track between Aderley and Hillgrove stations, railway officials said. The train was cancelled and it returned to the origin, Mettupalayam, they said.
Similarly, Udhagamandalam-Coonoor train was cancelled following landslide at Aruvangadu. Nilgiris district administration declared holiday today for educational institutions. Vehicular traffic was disrupted from Ooty to Kothagiri and Gudalur, police said.
In Coimbatore district, a flood alert has been given to the people living along the banks of Bhavani River with the Pilloor Dam poised to surplus. With rains lashing the catchment areas of the river and the dam since last evening, the inflow into the reservoir stood 12,000 cusecs with the water level at 93 feet against maximum of 100 feet, officials said.
Water would be released into the Bhavani River once the dam level touched 97 feet, they said adding people living in low lying areas of Mettupalayam, Thekkapatti, Nellithurai, Sirumugai and Alakombu and surrounding areas have been asked to move to safer areas, they said.