It’s official. Monsoon has arrived in India, and how! A large part of peninsular India has found itself submerged in heavy rains yet again, due to which major modes of transport have been halted. Here’s all you need to know about the showers in south India. By Bayar Jain
According to forecasts, heavy rains are predicted to last for the next three days, particularly in Konkan, Goa, coastal Karnataka, and Kerala. Parts of Maharashtra, too, are susceptible to water logging.
Among these states, Kerala is the worst hit. Following a red alert issued by the Kerala Disaster Management Authority, close to 22,165 people have been evacuated from their homes. This red alert warning has been issued for Idukki, Malappuram and Kozhikode districts. Alternatively, an orange alert has been issued to Trissur, Palakkad, Wayanad, Kannur, and Kasaragod. Predictions of heavy to very heavy rain and thunderstorms, however, are omnipresent throughout this coastal Indian state. Barring the state capital Thiruvananthapuram, schools and colleges have been shut in 13 districts of the state. Kollam, too, has been exempted. Moreover, flight operations to the Cochin International Airport have also been suspended for the week due to the heavy rains.
Issuing a red level alert is usually reserved for extreme and rare events. It implies that the recipients take action to protect themselves by moving out of the danger zone temporarily or following other disaster specific mitigating tactics. On the other hand, orange alerts imply that recipients of the affected area should prepare for any anticipated conditions, without necessarily having to evacuate the area yet.
In Maharashtra, too, the situation is worsening. Not only have trains from Mumbai to Pune been suspended for the fifth day in a row, the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) has also issued an “extremely heavy rain warning” for Pune, Satara, and Kolhapur. They also predicted that if this intensity of the rains persists for the next few days, the excess water will worsen the floods. Around 17 trains have been cancelled due to rains. Central Railway officials say that work on different tracks along many sections is going on as they try to restore normalcy.
Parts of Mumbai-Bengaluru highway also continue to remain shut. So far, nearly 26,000 people have been evacuated from their water-logged homes in different parts of Karnataka. Roads in the Chikkamagaluru, and Hasan district have also been flooded. Moreover, many landslides and cave-ins have halted access to Kodagu district. The national highway at Mallanamole near Nanjanagud, that is, the road connecting Mysuru to Tamil Nadu and Kerala, has also been flooded. As a result, vehicular traffic has hit the region. Incidentally, Karnataka is otherwise a drought-prone state.
In beach-state Goa, the situation is similar. Several people, locals and tourists, have been left stranded on routes from Goa to Belgaum due to flooding and landslides. The Mandovi river that cuts across the centre of Goa crossed the danger mark earlier this week, leading to flooding in parts of Northern Goa. Bicholim, Pilgao and some other villages in North Goa also suffered heavy flooding. Trees and electric poles have been knocked down due to the rains, leading power outages in many parts of the state.