10 killed in Kerala, TN
Ten people have died in coastal Kerala and Tamil Nadu and nearly 90 fishermen are missing as a depression above the Bay of Bengal turned into a...
Chennai: Ten people have died in coastal Kerala and Tamil Nadu and nearly 90 fishermen are missing as a depression above the Bay of Bengal turned into a cyclonic storm. Cyclone Ockhi intensified further into a severe storm and moved towards Lakshadweep on Friday after causing heavy rain that has left at least 10 people dead in Tamil Nadu and Kerala.
The Navy has been called in to rescue stranded fishermen. The cyclone is likely to strengthen further triggering a "red warning" for Lakshadweep - the highest category alert. The worst seems to be over in the mainland but forecasters have warned of heavy rain in parts of Kerala and Tamil Nadu.
Schools near the coast in the two states have been closed. In Kanyakumari and Thoothukudi districts of Tamil Nadu, strong winds uprooted more than 500 trees, snapped power lines and damaged settlements close to the sea.
Meanwhile, the Indian Navy and Coast Guard rescued 33 fishermen from the deep sea in the wake of cyclonic storm that hit the southern districts of Kerala, says a Thiruvananthapuram report.
Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, who held a high-level meeting, said there was no reason to panic as matters were under control with efforts of the Navy and Coast Guard. He also said they would ask the Defence Ministry for more naval aircraft to help rescue stranded fishermen.
Addressing reporters here, Vijayan said: "Seven ships and four helicopters have been deployed and the Director General of shipping has also given directions to passing merchant ships to extend all help to fishermen caught in the sea.”