Cyclone Ockhi: Coastal hamlets pray for safety

4,674 people from 1,258 families shifted to 7 relief camps.

KOCHI: Two people have died in Chellanam during the cyclonic developments on Friday and Saturday though the first information reports did not attribute the deaths directly to cyclone Ockhi. Joseph Rickson, aged 45, of Maravakkad was found unconscious in a pool of water in front of his house. Though he was immediately shifted to hospital, his life could not be saved. His house has been completely damaged in the cyclone and the family was shifted to the relief camp. Reetha, a 56-year-old housewife, who was shifted to the relief camp collapsed and died when she returned to see her house and saw it completely destroyed.

A well swells by cyclone Ockhi, in Chellanam near Kochi.

A well swells by cyclone Ockhi, in Chellanam near Kochi.

Meanwhile, a total of 4,674 people from 1,258 families have been shifted to seven relief camps from Kumbalanghi and Chellanam to Edvanakkad along the coast. Though some of the people have returned to their houses when the condition of the sea improved, many others still remain in camps. When the sea started entering more areas, five more relief camps were started in Kumbalangi and Chellanam. Chellanam bazaar area is the badly affected area where several houses were damaged. A total of 374 houses were damaged out of which five fully collapsed. Though several trees were uprooted in the area, no casualties have been reported.

Catholic priests pray as sea continues to remain rough on Saturday.

Catholic priests pray as sea continues to remain rough on Saturday.

Fire force, police, doctors and ambulance service are functioning round the clock in the affected areas. District Collector Muhammad Y Safirulla said that all fishing vessels from the district were out in the sea and were safe. No fishermen or boats registered with the State Fisheries Department from the district were missing, he added. The district administration has announced an immediate relief of Rs 10,000 each to the families of those who died. This is in addition to the compensation announced by the State government.

As many as 10 fishermen were admitted to hospitals near Kochi. Four fishermen who were workers of fishing boat Adbhutha Matha, from Neendakara, Kollam, swam to the Munambam coast. They have been admitted to Paravur taluk hospital while six from Kanyakumari and Poonthura have been admitted to the Ernakulam General Hospital. Coast Guard and Naval personnel have rescued two people from the fishing boat ‘Thoya Anthonia’. Meanwhile, as per the instructions of the State Health director, the district medical officer has taken measures to coordinate the relief works. Ambulance service and enough stock of medicines have been ensured and more doctors have been sent to coastal areas.

Cops distribute blankets

Police personnel have distributed more than 150 blankets to the cyclone affected people who have been camped at the relief camp at St. Mary’s School, Chellanam. The initiative is part of the Community Policing scheme, said S.T Suresh Kumar, assistant commissioner, control room. If required, more blankets will be distributed to the needy, he said.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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