A day after showers lashed Chennai and northern Tamil Nadu districts with the heaviest downpour in 10 years, there was some relief on Tuesday. However, many parts of the city remained submerged, with hundreds of houses without electricity and several families forced to go without food and drinking water.
Over 1,000 people, according to an official release, were rescued from flood-hit areas by various teams of the 10th Battalion of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), which has been deployed across Tamil Nadu and south Andhra districts. Medicines, first aid and food packets were provided to the victims in rehabilitation shelters.
Besides IAF and Navy teams joining the rescue operations, the Madras 4 Regiment of the Army was also pressed into service at Mudichur in Kancheepuram district, south of Chennai. IAF divers and swimmers, along with a naval helicopter, were kept on standby for emergency operations.
“The Air Force alone had rescued 22 people on Monday night,” said an IAF official.
Taxi service operator Ola deployed boats along with professional rowers to rescue people in the waterlogged areas. Announcing its boat service for the next three days, Ola in a statement said it was deploying boats on the basis of information from the fire and rescue department.
Meanwhile, Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa on Tuesday ordered the opening of 50 more Farm Fresh outlets in Chennai, to meet the city’s vegetable requirements.
With the Chembarambakkam and Poondi reservoirs — the largest water sources of the city — filled to the brim, an alert was issued asking residents to shift downstream to safer locations.
Schools and colleges in Chennai, Kancheepuram and Tiruvallur districts will remain closed on Wednesday too.