Thiruvananthapuram: The torrential rain over the last two weeks took nearly 400 lives, rendered lakhs homeless and sleepless in Kerala.
However, the good news is that the water levels are coming down and rescue operations are almost over. The overall loss is pegged at over Rs. 20,000 crore. But Kerala isn’t losing hope. While the state was sinking, the calamity brought the world together. Help poured in from every corner.
Actors, Supreme Court judges, corporates, politicians, students and organisations have already started contributing, but the state will need much more and take much longer to recover.
Recently, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) pooled in Rs. 700 crore to rebuild the state. The UAE has been a preferred choice for Keralites looking to start lives away from home. The UAE government has also formed a national emergency committee to help the flood victims.
The centre has declared Kerala floods as a “calamity of severe nature”. Home Minister Rajnath Singh had announced an immediate relief of Rs. 100 crore August 12. About Rs. 80 crore had also been announced by Minister of State for Home Affairs Kiren Rijiju. But the situation continued to worsen.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi released Rs. 500 crore after an aerial survey. The state had sought an immediate assistance of Rs. 2,000 crore.
Meanwhile, Union Minister KJ Alphons said that water has gone down. “The fishermen are the real heroes. They brought 600 boats and saved hundreds. All people are safe in relief camps,” Mr Alphons added.The people of Kerala are the ultimate heroes, he said.
“They are working tirelessly and helping immensely in relief operations. But thousands of houses and roads have collapsed. We need electricians, carpenters, plumbers and doctors to rush to Kerala. We need people with technical skills,” he said.
After things begin to settle, the state government will make an assessment of losses and all possible assistance will be provided to put life back on track.