While Kerala is battling worst floods in decades, situation in neighbouring state Karnataka has also gone from bad to worse with continuous rains flooding several areas. Kodagu, about 250 km from Bengaluru, is one of the districts in the southern state worst hit by the south-west monsoon rains since June first week.
The government has pressed the alarm button calling the Indian Army and Navy to help in rescue and relief missions in the flood-hit districts of Karnataka.
"About 60 Dogra Regiment soldiers and 12 expert naval divers rescued 873 marooned people in the flood-hit district, where overnight heavy rains caused landslides and inundated low-lying areas at Makkanduru," a statement issued by the CM office stated.
HELPLINE NUMBERS: DC Kodagu: +91-9482628409 CEO ZP Kodagu: +91-9480869000. Helicopter helpline: Alpy +91-8281292702,Chandru - +919663725200,Dhanjay- +91 9449731238,Mahesh - +91 9480731020 Army: +91-9446568222
Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy is visiting Kodagu on Saturday to assess the situation and review relief operations in the district, where landslides claimed four lives since Thursday. In Kodagu, about 573 persons have been shifted to 17 relief camps which have been established by the government.
"Kumaraswamy will visit the rain-hit areas in the district and review the rescue and relief operations with officials," said the official press release.
Army, Navy deployed
The Army's engineering task force deployed 73 boats, equipment and rafts in rescuing the people and escorting them to safer places in the district.
About 60 members of the national and state disaster relief forces and 45 members of the civil defence joined the rescue and relief operations with boats and equipment in Madikeri in the hilly district.
"Though the Indian Air Force (IAF) aborted rescue mission due to inclement weather, it will fly M17 chopper from Mysuru on Saturday to rescue the remaining stranded and transport relief supplies," a statement said.
About 200 personnel of the state fire service had rescued people in flood-hit towns and villages across the district with their boats and equipment.
"Telecom services, disrupted due to rains and strong winds uprooting poles and snapping phone lines, are being restored on priority. HAM operators have been deployed as back-up. Power lines are also being restored," it added.
Transport services badly hit
Intra and inter-state bus and train services between Karnataka and flood-hit Kerala were suspended due to landslides and rainwater submerging the highways and roads in the ghat section.
State-run and private bus services from Mysuru and Chamarajanagar to Ooty and Coonoor hill stations in Tamil Nadu were suspended due to flooding and fallen trees blocking the routes in the ghat section.
No respite from rains till Sunday
According to the weather office, rain fury continued in the state's coastal districts of Dakshina Kannada, Udupi and Uttara Kannada, disrupting normal life, including vehicular movement of goods and people.
Schools and colleges will remain shut even on Saturday in the affected districts due to flooding and disruption of bus services.
The state's metrological department has warned of moderate to heavy rain in coastal, south interior and north interior areas of the state till Sunday.
WATCH: Heavy rains wreak havoc in Karnataka's Kodagu
(With inputs from IANS)