Rains lashed several parts of Tamil Nadu and neighbouring Puducherry with the North-East monsoon in the last 24 hours claiming one life in Chennai. The Met office in the state capital issued a red alert for six districts in Tamil Nadu. Various parts of the state have been receiving good rainfall since the onset of the monsoon on October 16.
The regional meteorological department issued red alert for six Tamil Nadu districts — Thiruvallur, Vellore, Thiruvannamalai, Thoothukkudi, Ramanathapuram and Thirunelveli districts — after IMD predicted an extremely heavy rain is likely to occur.
Other than these districts, very heavy rain is likely to occur at Chennai, Kancheepuram, Villupuram, Puducherry, Cuddalore, Erode, Nilgiris, Coimbatore, Theni and Dindigul districts and heavy rain is likely to occur at a few places over Kanyakumari, Madurai, Perambalur, Ariyalur, Tiruchy, Thanjavur, Pudukkottai and Sivaganga districts of Tamil Nadu.
Director of area cyclone-warning Centre, Regional Meteorological Centre, N Puviarasan said the presence of upper air circulation caused heavy to very heavy rains.
“In the last 24 hours on Sunday, Sathankulam in Tuticorin district recorded maximum of 19 cm of rainfall followed by Cuddalore 17 cm, Tirunelveli 15 cm, Kancheepuram 13 cm, ” he told reporters on Sunday (December 1).
He said light to heavy rainfall may occur over the next 24-48 hours. To a query, he said the rainfall recorded since October 1 was 39 per cent which was three per cent higher than the rain received during the setting of the monsoon.
For Chennai and its surrounding areas, he said light to moderate rainfall may occur over the next two days.
“The city received 51 cm this season which is 9% less compared to the normal 60 cm received during monsoon season,” he said.
He advised fishermen not to venture into sea at Cape Comorin, Lakshadweep area as gusty winds were likely to occur due to the presence of depression in the Arabian Sea.
Meanwhile, city Police Commissioner A K Viswanathan took stock of situation in the state capital and reviewed the measures taken following the heavy rainfall.
Talking to reporters, Viswanathan said all the departments have been alerted to take stock of situation in a coordinated manner. He said a whatsapp group of officers has been formed to ensure that immediate steps would be taken.
“Five teams from the State Disaster Relief Force have been kept on standby and teams from the National Disaster Relief Force, if required, may also join in,” he said.
In neighbouring Puducherry, incessant rains hit normal life from this morning.Territorial Chief Minister V Narayanasamy told at his residence the union territory saw nearly 12 cm of rainfall in the last 24 hours and the directorate of school education declared a holiday for schools and colleges on Monday.
The Chief Minister said he was recuperating after a knee replacement surgery, so he could not visit the rain-ravaged areas, but his ministerial colleagues had fanned out to different pockets for relief and rehabilitation works.
Most of the thoroughfares were water-logged disrupting vehicular traffic. Daily wage earners were hard-hit because of the inclement weather. Reports from the southern districts said rains hit normal life by affecting rail and vehicular traffic and submerging crops.
In some places, residents have been moved to safe ground as houses were marooned, officials said. Vehicular traffic in Tiruchendur and Tuticorin was affected.
Kovai Express and Pearl City Express were stopped at Melur as the tracks got submerged. State minister Vijayabaskar visited the flood-affected areas in Pudukottai district and was overseeing relief operation.
The rain over the last two days in Tirunelveli, Tenkasi, Kanyakumari and Tuticorin resulted in most dams getting filled up, the officials said. The North-East monsoon accounts for about 48 per cent of the annual rainfall in the state.
(With inputs from agencies)