New Delhi, Oct. 18 (EFE).- The number of deaths due to heavy rains and floods over the weekend in the southern Indian state of Kerala increased to 24 on Monday, according to official sources.
The official death toll so far from heavy rainfall in the region is 24, an official from the Kerala Information Department, who asked not to be named, told EFE.
Among the total dead, 11 lost their lives in Idukki, while another 13 in Kottayam, two districts worst affected by landslides in the area, he added.
The official further said that rescue and evacuation work was being carried out against the clock in several parts of the coastal region as “the water level is rising.”
The National Disaster Response Force has been conducting intensive rescue efforts, especially in Idukki, from where footage has gone viral of a landslide sweeping everything in its way down the slope of a mountain.
The Indian Air Force, on its part, announced early Monday the dispatch of military helicopters to help in relief operations in areas flooded due to heavy rainfall.
The latest forecast of the meteorology department indicated that although the situation is improving in the region, strong isolated showers are expected over Kerala and neighboring states in the coming days.
Although landslides and floods are common during the monsoons in South Asia, resulting in significant loss of life and property, Kerala has been particularly affected in recent years.
Between May and August 2018, torrential rains resulted in the worst floods in about a century in Kerala, causing at least 370 deaths. A year later heavy rains left 76 dead in the same region. EFE