Thoothukudi rains: Residents stuck in flooded homes, relief yet to reach many

According to KKSSR Ramachandran, state Minister for Revenue and Disaster Management, Kayalpattinam locality in Thoothukudi received 94.6 cm of rainfall while Tiruchendur recorded 68.9 cm, Srivaikundam 62.1 cm, and Kovilpatti 52.5 cm.
Houses in Thoothukudi inundated with rainwater
Houses in Thoothukudi inundated with rainwater
Written by:
Edited by:

Thoothukudi district in southern Tamil Nadu received heavy rains between December 17 and December 18, recording 37.96 cm of rainfall in 24 hours. While the district collectorate in the coastal district was inundated, many houses were flooded and crops damaged. In Paraipatti panchayat, the foundation of the nearby railway tracks was washed away in the floods. According to KKSSR Ramachandran, Minister for Revenue and Disaster Management, Kayalpattinam locality in Thoothukudi received 94.6 cm of rainfall while Tiruchendur recorded 68.9 cm, Srivaikundam 62.1 cm, and Kovilpatti 52.5 cm.

Teams from the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and the State Disaster Management Authority (SDMA) are on the ground to rescue people from low-lying areas and take them to relief camps. More than 100 personnel have been deployed at the critical zones and nearly 4,000 people have been shifted to the 26 relief camps set up in various locations in Thoothukudi as of December 18.

Speaking to TNM, a resident from Muthammal Colony in Thoothukudi said that the rain started on December 17 morning and continued till 3 pm on December 18. She lives on the second floor of a building with her two school-going children and elderly mother; the family does not have drinking water and food. “There was no power since the rain started, so we were not able to run the motor to fill the water tank. As motors and sumps are submerged in the rainwater, we are not able to cook anything and we do not have any stored drinking water,” she said. As the shops were closed and the water was at neck-level, she couldn't leave her kids and mother to get drinking water after wading through the flood water.

Read: Tirunelveli rains: Residents await rescue as several areas remain inundated

Meanwhile, one bank of the Koramballam Lake broke on the morning of December 18 and water entered into all the houses nearby. One resident from Koramballam said that they were completely disconnected from the road and main city area. Speaking to TNM, Vijaya, a resident from Pon Nagar West, said that her house was completely inundated with rainwater and she had to be rescued by her neighbours. “Now, all seven of us are on the terrace under a makeshift tent. We are waiting for help from the government. We have not received any help from anyone so far and as it is pouring very hard, the water level will increase further. We do not know how we will get out from this area,” she noted. She added that one of her neighbours who was with her had undergone heart surgery recently.

Director Mari Selvaraj, taking to X, said that many villages in Srivaikundam, one of the worst hit areas in the district, are not accessible to the rescue team. “The condition of the villages to the east of Srivaikundam is alarming. Rescue boats have not been able to reach any of the villages because of the nature of the flood. More than 20 villages including Adinathapuram, Chembur, Karayadiyur, Pillaimadaiyur, Maanattoor, Kallambarai, Themankulam, Manathi, Rajapathi, Kuruvaattoor, Kurumboor, Kuttakarai, Thenthiruperai, and Melakadamba are inaccessible,” he noted and urged Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin, Minister Udhayanidhi Stalin, and Thoothukudi MP Kanimozhi to speed up the rescue operations.

Speaking to TNM, Ponraj, All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) Town Secretary of Srivaikundam West, said that a lot of villages remain inundated and alleged that relief and rescue operations are focused only on Tirunelveli. “Compared to Tirunelveli, the damage is a lot in Thoothukudi. But officials are focusing only on Tirunelveli. Because of this, we are not getting any immediate relief from government officials and officials who are stationed here are restraining us from doing relief work,” he said. He noted that the banks of more than 15 ponds in the villages in Srivaikundam broke, rendering the rescue operation more dangerous. He said that Parakiramapandi, Azhikudi, and Chinnur villages, which have 200 families each, have been completely cut off from outside communication and road access.

Kanimozhi, Thoothukudi MP who was suspended recently, urged Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) party members to volunteer for relief work, especially to help senior citizens, pregnant women, and parents with infants. People who need help to be evacuated can reach out on 80778 80779, Kanimozhi said. The state government has also issued hotline numbers 1077 and  0461 - 2340101 for those who need assistance.

Watch: Several parts of southern Tamil Nadu flooded, trains and flights cancelled

Related Stories

No stories found.
The News Minute