Only two members of the family managed to escape while the bodies of several family members are yet to be recovered.

Kerala landslide a former panchayat member Tata Global Beverages known as the Kanan Devan estate lived Forty three dead bodies have been recovered from the Nemakkadu Estate Lines in Pettimudi kerala floods monsoon rain By Arrangement
news KERALA RAINS 2020 Sunday, August 09, 2020 - 19:26

“I am standing here and I am an orphan now,” Shivagurunathan chokes as he says during an interview to the media, as it dawns on him that three generations of his family – 18 members – were victims of the August 7 landslide. The landslide happened in the wee hours of Thursday, burying four rows of houses where people who work in the tea estates owned by Tata Global Beverages (known as the Kanan Devan estate) lived. Forty three dead bodies have been recovered from the Nemakkadu Estate Lines in Pettimudi of Kerala's Munnar – and 40 more estate workers and their families are missing, buried under the debris of the landslide. There is little hope of finding any more survivors.

And among those missing are several of Shivagurunathan’s relatives. So far, some bodies of his family members have been recovered. Out of the few people who have survived, two are his relatives.

As the dead bodies of 18 people who lived and worked together at the Kanan Devan tea estate are buried together in two pits, Shivagurunathan tries to recall the names and relations of his loved ones caught under the rubble. But he struggles to go on. "Everyone is gone…” he says, “We don't have any reason to come here...the children are all gone."

Shivagurunathan and his family are from Tamil Nadu, and came to Munnar for their livelihood. They have been living here for several decades. "I lived and worked here in the tea garden till 2004 with my parents, all the people here were my relatives," he tells Malayala Manorama and Asianet news.

Shivagurunathan is the nephew of Anandasivan, a former panchayat member. Several members of Anandasivan's family, his wife Velathayi, their two sons Bharathiraja, Ganesan and their families are presumed dead.

(Several family members of Anandasivan, the former a former panchayat member from Pettimudi has died in the landslide)

While Bharathiraja's body has been recovered, his wife and two children are presumed dead. Ganesan and his wife Manjula are also presumed dead. The bodies of Anandasivan's brother, Mayilchami and his wife Rajeswari were found, and their two children Sivakami and Sivaranjini are missing.

From Anandasivan’s sister Palaniamma's family, only her son Deepan managed to escape. While Palaniamma, her husband, and son Pratheesh's bodies have not been found, her other son Prabhu’s body was recovered. Deepan was to be a father soon after his marriage ten months ago to Muthulakshmi who is presumed dead – she was nine months pregnant.

Shanmugam, a nephew of Anandasivan working as a bank officer with a co-operative bank also escaped.

Rescue teams on Sunday recovered 17 bodies, including that of a six-month-old infant. Forest Minister K Raju said that rescue operations will continue until all who went missing are found.

Last year, when a large landslide buried more than 100 houses in Kavalappara in Wayanad, the search went on for 19 days and more than 75 bodies were recovered.

 

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