Monsoon Wreaks Havoc in Kerala, Death Toll Rises to 56
Since the onset of monsoon, as many as 255 houses were fully damaged while 5,566 houses were damaged partially. Agriculture was also affected with 4217.91 hectares being destroyed.

Thiruvananthapuram: The death toll in rain-related incidents in Kerala has gone up to 56, said Revenue Minister E Chandrasekaran in Kerala Assembly on Tuesday.

The government has decided to provide Rs four lakh as ex-gratia to the kin of the deceased while Chandrasekaran also informed the House that 28,700 persons have been shifted to relief camps so far.

The damage due to rain was reported from almost all districts of the state. At Payam in Kannoor, nine houses were gutted because of the heavy flooding. A major landslide in Kattippara near Thamarassery in Kozhikode district claimed 14 lives. The Kozhikode district administration has also issued a travel ban on Thamarassery Ghat in the wake of heavy rains that continues to lash the district.

Meanwhile, Kozhikode District Collector U V Jose has ordered an inquiry into the charge that construction of an illegal check dam near Kattipara added to the intensity of the landslide.

Minister Chandrasekaran, who visited the landslide-hit areas at Kattipara, warned of severe action against those indulged in unauthorised constructions in ecologically fragile zones.

A team of 96 persons from the National Disaster Response Force have been deployed intwo teams in the state. Officials at the state Control room for Disaster Management in Thiruvananthapuram said the flood situation has improved in the state with water receding from almost all areas.