Cyclone Ockhi alert came late: Kerala CM Pinarayi

Dec 03, 2017, 00:51
Cyclone Ockhi alert came late: Kerala CM Pinarayi

Cyclonic storm Ockhi ravaged the Lakshadweep islands and left hundreds of families in Kerala in relief camps.

Rescue operations were underway, with the Indian navy, air force and coast guard searching for dozens of fishermen unaccounted for in the Thiruvananthapuram-Kollam coastal area, said the New Delhi Television news channel.

In Kerala, Ockhi has claimed four lives so far, 270 fishermen and 62 boats continue to be missing.

Relatively untouched by Cyclone Ockhi, the north Tamil Nadu coast is bracing for a rather intense weather system predicted to move towards the north Tamil Nadu-south Andhra Pradesh coast next week.

Chief minister K. Palaniswami announced a solatium of Rs 4 lakh to the kin of each of the victims, an official release said.

In Kanyakumari, Tirunelveli and Tuticorin districts, heavy rains and gusty winds uprooted 579 trees, it said, adding, efforts are on to remove them. Power and communication networks remain hit while roads remain unsuitable for transportation, a police officer told Mirror.

More than 2,000 people have taken shelter in relief centres in Kanyakumari and Tirunelveli districts in Tamil Nadu state and in Lakshadweep, a group of 36 islands, officials said.

According to the Indian Meteorological Department, "The very severe cyclonic storm Ockhi over Lakshadweep and adjoining southeast Arabian Sea moved further west-northwestwards with a speed of 11 kmph during the past 6 hours", quotes India Today.