Rescue personnel on Tuesday called off operations at the Kavalappara landslide site in Kerala, after a 19-day search and rescue operation to look for missing persons. A total of 48 bodies have been recovered from the debris at the site. However, 11 people are still missing from the area and are suspected to have been trapped under the landslip.
On Monday, the relatives of the missing persons had a meeting with Malappuram Collector Jafar Malik where it was decided that the search operation for the missing people would continue for one more day, according to reports.
Rescue personnel from the Fire and Rescue Services Team, NDRF and the Kerala police searched the entire 7 acres of debris over a course of 19 days. Several volunteers from different organisations too had helped with the rescue operations over 19 days. A rescue team of over 357 members had been involved in recovering bodies for over 11 hours every day. They conducted the search and rescue operations using earth-movers, sledgehammers and chainsaws.
As the site of the landslip was wet due to rains, attempts by the National Geophysical Research Institute, Hyderabad, to trace buried bodies using the radar system had failed to work.
Collector Jafar Malik assured the relatives of all those who are missing that they would receive the same benefits and compensation as that the kin of the dead persons.
The state government has announced a compensation of Rs 4 lakh to relatives of those who died due to rain related calamities.
Kavalappara landslip which occurred on August 8, is one of the worst calamities Kerala witnessed this monsoon. Rescue operations at the site came into focus, especially after a local mosque at Pothukal turned a part of its prayer room into an autopsy centre to perform post-mortem on the bodies recovered from the landslip.