Rajnath assures Kerala CM of central help for floods (Lead)
New Delhi : Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Friday spoke to Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on phone and took stock of the flood situation in the state, besides assuring him of all central help.
"Spoke to Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan and discussed the prevailing flood situation in the state. I have assured of all possible assistance from the Centre to the state government," Rajnath Singh tweeted.
The Minister said that "relief and rescue operations are going on and the Ministry of Home Affairs is closely monitoring the situation".
In Kerala, large areas have been inundated by floodwaters, claiming 27 lives in the last 48 hours, due to heavy rain and landslides. Several Kerala districts have been receiving heavy rains since Wednesday. Till Thursday, 24 people had died, while three more deaths were reported on Friday.
Earlier, the Union Minister told the Lok Sabha during Zero Hour that the Central government was aware of the crisis in Kerala and it was ready to provide any assistance needed by the state.
The Minister also said that he had sent Minister of State for Home Affairs Kiren Rijiju to Kerala a few days ago to take stock.
After the July floods, Rijiju toured the flood-hit districts. The Centre had then approved Rs 80 crore for the state.
According to Kerala Power Minister M.M. Mani, who hails from Idukki, so far three sluices of the Idukki dam had been opened till Friday.
The Army is involved in rescue and relief as well as damage-repair exercises in Idukki, Wayanad, Kozhikode and Malappuram districts.
In a statement, the Home Ministry on Thursday said it was sending four National Disaster Response Force teams to Kerala and that an inter-ministerial Central team was also visiting the flood-affected areas.