Landslides wreak havoc in Kottayam's Koottickal, Idukki's Kokkayar | Photos

Rescue activities led by the Kerala Fire And Rescue Services, NDRF and locals in Idukki's Kokkayar which witnessed a deadly landslide on Saturday. Photo: Reju Arnold

Kottayam: Kerala was battered by a series of landslides and heavy floods as a result of a torrential downpour triggered by the formation of a low-depression zone in the Arabian Sea.

The central districts of Kottayam and Idukki were the worst hit with the former experiencing its worst-ever rain calamity with 13 deaths.

As rescue efforts waned on Sunday evening, hampered by poor visibility and incessant rains, as many as 24 were reported dead and several remain missing still.

With more rain forecast for the coming days, the State has urged all to take necessary precautions, especially in Idukki and Pathanamthitta where dams are nearing their storage capacity.

A house destroyed in the landslide in Kottayam's Koottickal on Saturday.


Koottickal landslide: The bodies of all the 13 persons reported missing following a landslide in Koottickal panchayat in Kottayam has been recovered.

Six bodies of members of the same family - Ottalankal house- have been retrieved from Kavali. They have been identified as Martin (47), wife Sini (35), their three daughters - Sona (10), Sneha (14), Sandra (12), and Martin's mother Claramma Joseph (65). 

Two different landslides were also reported in the district - at Plappalli and Kavali.

Four bodies were recovered at Plappalli panchayat. The deceased include Sonia (45) of Attuchalil house, her son Alan (12), Sarasamma (58) of Panthalattil, and Roshni (50) of Mundakasseri.

The body of Shalet Olickal (29) of Elamkadu, Rajamma (65) of Koovappally, Cicily (55) of Erattayar were also retrieved Sunday afternoon.

The Meenachil and Manimala rivers here are overflowing, inundating towns and blocking roads.

(L)Martin of Ottalankal house in Plappally, his wife Sini, children Sneha, Sona and Sandra, members of a family who were killed in a landslide occurred at Kottayam's Koottickal on Saturday


Kokkayar landslide: Several persons were reported missing in the landslide at Kokkayar in Idukki.

Out of the eight missing here, five are children.

The rescue operations led by National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) team here was hampered on account of heavy rains. However, locals were able to rescue as many as 17 people.

The bodies of three children found on Sunday has been identified as Amna (7), daughter of Siyad; Faisal's two sons - Afsan (8) and Ahiyan (4).

The three children were found in a tight embrace. Their bodies were shifted to the Kottayam Medical College Hospital.

The bodies of Shaji Chirayil (55), Siyad's wife Fouzia (28) and son (Amin) were also found.

Search is on for their 7-year-old neighbour Sachu Shahul, and Ansi Sabu.

The body of Jojy (44) of Vadasseril house, Nirmalagiri near Peruvanthanam, was also found.

On Saturday, a car with two people was swept away by the gushing waters at Arakkulam near Thodupuzha.

A few hours later, their dead bodies were recovered by the locals.

Swollen rivers

The water levels in the rivers flowing through Kottayam, such as Manimalayar and Meenachil, are rising.

Landslides have led to the blockage of Mundakkayam Elamkadu-Vagamon Road also. However, no casualties were reported as it is an uninhabited region. Landslips have occurred in the forest area in Kodunga also.

Flooding was witnessed on main roads as well as byroads. House compounds too are inundated as canals have already started overflowing. Holidaymakers visiting various tourist sites are also stranded.

The causeway on Mundakkayam-Erumely Road and nearby houses are flooded.

People have been shifted from their houses at Ramanayi near Ponthanpuzha, while some families at Murikallumpuram are stranded. Fifteen families have been shifted from near Kuruvamoozhi Bridge to a relief camp.

The Kanjirappally Press Centre is also flooded.

Scenes from the sites

Rescue efforts are still progressing at the Poovanchi area in Idukki's Kokkayar Panchayat where a landslide swept away several houses on Saturday. Eight people were missing in the landslide that struck Poovanchi and Makkochi areas. Photo: Reju Arnold
Floodwater gushes through a property at Mangappara near Kottayam following a landslide on Saturday. Photo: Manorama
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