KOCHI l MONDAY l AUGUST 12, 2019 l `7.00 l PAGES 18 l LATE CITY EDITION #KeralaTragedy 72 57 Death toll missing 2.54 lakh 1,639 people in relief camps 265 KSRTC resumes services in many parts of Malabar, including on the Thamarassery ghat road. Several roads in Malappuram are not ready for travel yet n Rahul Gandhi, the MP from Wayanad, reaches Kerala, visits affected places in north Kerala houses fully damaged 35 trains were cancelled on Sunday. Efforts on to repair the Kozhikode-Kannur rail line. Trains started plying on the Shoranur-Palakkad and T’Puram-Palakkad routes Defence units join rescue operations in Malappuram Kochi International Airport, which was closed on Thursday night, resumes operations at Sunday noon. CIAL said that all flights are starting services as per schedule Members of Kasma Football Club rescue people who were trapped in their partially submerged houses on Sunday in Malappuram | ALBIN MATHEW | P5 n Kerala State Disaster Management Authority says winds with a speed of 45-55 kmph are likely on Kerala’s coast on Monday HOPE & DESPAIR AS RAIN ABATES BODY COUNT SOARS AS RESCUE WORK PICKS UP 10 BODIES FOUND AT PUTHUMALA, 7 MISSING SUN COMES OUT AT MANY PLACES IN STATE NO RED ALERT FOR MONDAY; ORANGE ALERT IN 6 DISTS 7 of family under debris, Sunil refuses to leave landslide site A R U N M @ Kavalappara (Nilambur) George, whose sister-in-law Shaila has been missing following Thursday’s massive landslide at Puthumala in Wayanad district, watches the rescue work | E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ Kochi Negative campaigns started doing the rounds from some centres — mainly through social media. Taking part in such campaigns is an offence against the state, and the government has taken serious note of it Pinarayi Vijayan, Chief Minister THE intensity of rain lessened across Kerala on Sunday after four , days of copious downpour and landslides leaving death and destruction in their trail, but the misery continued for the flood-hit people. The death toll has climbed to 72 and 50odd people are still missing. Clouds are expected to be clear in the next couple of days with the Kerala State Disaster Management Authority predicting no ‘red alert’ though ‘orange alert’ has been issued for six districts — Kasaragod, Kannur, Wayanad, Malappuram, Kozhikode and Idukki — for Monday The Kochi airport, . which had been closed since Thursday evening, resumed operations on Sunday while most of the rail tracks and roads were opened for traffic. However, hundreds of people have been rendered homeless in the rain havoc. A total of 1,639 relief camps are sheltering nearly 2.5 lakh people across the state. Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, meanwhile, asked the public not to be swayed by fake reports that the CM’s Relief Fund was being misused. “The government views such fake messages as a heinous crime against the state and its people. Only anti-socials can do such a thing,’’ he told mediapersons in Thiruvananthapuram. Hope is running out at Kavalappara in Malappuram, where an entire hill tumbled like a pack of cards on Friday as the rescue workers are , still to find about 50 missing people BIG BOSS Task cut out for Sonia to reboot grand-old Cong R I C H A S H A R M A @ New Delhi Cong has not learnt: Chouhan Bhubaneswar: Senior BJP leader Shivraj Singh Chouhan on Sunday said dynasty politics was rejected in the last general elections, but the Congress did not learn from it and still wants Rahul Gandhi and Sonia Gandhi to lead the party. Chouhan said the BJP has set an example as its leaders grow in the party naturally, while the Congress is unable to move beyond a family WITH Sonia Gandhi back as interim president, the Congress needs to do a holding operation, riven as it is with desertions, factionalism and general disenchantment after over two months of drift. And the upcoming Assembly elections in three states will be her first test. Sonia’s name was proposed by senior leader P Chidambaram as the Congress Working Committee (CWC) meeting on Saturday found there was no consensus on anyone else. While a few CWC members worried about her ability to take the load because of her ill health, Sonia reluctantly gave her consent. Now, the biggest challenge before her is to set the house in order in the poll bound states of Jharkhand, Haryana and Sonia Gandhi Maharashtra. While the party has named its poll panel in Maharashtra, it is struggling to do so in Haryana and Jharkhand because of factionalism. A top party functionary was optimistic on everyone falling in line with Sonia at the helm, though revamping the party would be a challenge. “Having acceptability among all section of the society, the party felt she was the best person for the job,” the leader said. It may however, give heartburns to the Young , Turks, especially those handpicked by Rahul Gandhi, as there was strong lobbying for a nonGandhi young leader to take over the reins. CONTINUED ON: P7 T P SOORAJ and it is feared that almost all of them may be buried under the huge pile of mud. A total of 12 bodies have been recovered so far from the site. “A private function was being hosted at the residence of an Army personnel in Kavalappara. No one knows the exact number of people who attended the event. But, there should have been at least 50 people,” said a villager. The situation is not different at Puthumala near Meppadi in Wayanad, where 100 acres of tea plantation along with a mosque, temple and the canteen of the plantation company were swept away in a lands l i d e o n T h u r s d ay eve n i n g . One more body was recovered on Sunday while eight people are still missing. P3, 4, 5 FOUR days have passed since seven of his family, including wife and son, were washed away by a massive landslide at Kavalappara. But Sunil has refused to leave the site and he stands staring at the red mud. It takes a miracle for him to see his dear ones alive again, and the 35-year-old too knows it. One can feel his hope and helplessness when he asks, “How can I leave here when my wife, son, father, sister and her kids are underneath this soil?” Residents of Kavalappara are being shifted to relief camps and other safe settlements, but Sunil stays put at the site where bodies of 50 more are believed to be under the debris. His dear ones — wife Santhakumari, 17-year-old son Sujith, 60-yearold father Anakkaran Palan, sister, her husband and two children — have left him and he is inconsolable. Sunil who is desolate after missing seven members of his family to a landslide at Kavalappara | A SANESH “The landslide occurred with a h e av y n o i s e a ro u n d 8 pm. Everything happened in the fraction of a second,” said a tearful Sunil. He was at his wife’s house nearby when the tragedy struck. That saved his life, which he should feel has become pointless without his dear ones. Adding to Sunil’s woes, search for his kin has not begun yet as the NDRF, police and Fire and Rescue personnel could not reach the spot until Sunday, with the road to the area having swept away completely. Same is the plight of nearly 20 families here. Rescue workers have started constructing a temporary way to the area, but it will take more time. “I was born and brought up here, but have never heard of a tragedy like this in the area,” said Sunil as one finds it tough to console him. Similar heart-wrenching scenes unfolded at Kavalappara, where about 60 people have been feared killed in the big landslide that occurred on P5 Thursday night. HAVOC, HARDSHIP ELSEWHERE... NILGIRIS ANDHRA PRADESH Efforts to trace a 43-year-old man trapped in a landslide in O Valley in Gudalur enter fourth day Second flood warning along the Tungabhadra river course in Kurnool district As rain lets up, roads are finally being cleared. Several villages in O Valley devastated High alert in low-lying areas in Kurnool city and other villages along Tungabhadra and Krishna Parts of Coonoor went at least 23 hours without electricity beginning Saturday 10,300 people in relief camps on Sunday; Road connectivity to 189 villages in the state cut off HAMPI | KARNATAKA l Hampi, a world heritage site, bore the brunt after excess water from the Tungabhadra reservoir was released l 3,45,424 evacuated in worst-hit Belagavi 40 Toll due to rains,floods in state; 12 more missing; Home Min Amit Shah conducts aerial survey In the wake of latest flood, Express investigates reasons for the increasing frequency of extreme climatic events P2 Festival buzz missing in Kashmir; tension, fear palpable S A N A S H A K I L @ Srinagar “BAKRID is about sacrifice and this Eid, we will sacrifice ourselves because our lives are the only thing that the government is yet to take away. We have been robbed of our rights, even basic rights. What will we celebrate this time and with whom?” wondered Ghulam Mehmood. RESTRICTIONS BEING SLOWLY EASED The buzz around Eid was missing despite curbs being slowly eased. Most markets in the Valley remained shut. With difficulty, people managed to navigate their way past the barricades to buy essentials Many others here echoed Ghulam. This Eid-ul-Zuha will be the first big test for security forces as well as the locals after the annulling of special privileges under Article 370. The fact that this is the first Eid in the last 30 years when all modes of communication have been disabled is adding to anxiety among the locals. While the local administra- CURIOSITY FACTOR After SC’s descendants poser, Jaipur royals say Lord Ram was their ancestor R A J E S H A S N A N I @ Jaipur ON Friday, the Supreme Court bench hearing the Ayodhya case, “out of curiosity”, wondered if any descendants of Lord Ram still reside in Ayodhya. Now, the Jaipur royals have said Ram was their ancestor. Diya Kumari, the BJP MP from Rajasmand and a member of Jaipur’s royal family, said she belonged to the Kachhwaha-Kushwaha dynasty, so named after Kush—the son of Lord Ram—and that her lineage was a “recorded fact based on manuscripts, genealogy and documents available with the family”. “Descend- ants of Lord Ram are all over the world, including our family,” she tweeted. Diya’s mother Padmini Devi, wife of Brigadier Bhavani Singh of the former royal family put out ancient maps of , Ram Janmabhoomi and Ayodhya in the possession of the city palace, saying her husband was the 309th descendant of Lord Ram. The maps, which were kept safe in the cloakroom of the palace, have now been made public. Padmini Devi, the former queen mother, added, “There should be early resolution of the Ram temple iss u e. S i n c e t h e Diya Kumari court asked where the descendants of Lord Ram are, we came forward. We do not want the issue of dynasty to be an obstruction. Ram is a symbol of everyone’s faith.” Diya Kumari said they also had nine documents and two other maps that prove Ram’s birthplace in Ayodhya was under the rule of Sawai Jai Singh II in the 1700s. After Aurangzeb’s death, the Jaipur ruler had bought large tracts of land in Hindu religious areas. According to a book by historian R Nath, the Kachhwaha dynasty of Jaipur had the right over the Ram Mandir in Ayodhya. tion has been making announcements that it will facilitate people to offer Eid namaz, fear, tension and uncertainity is palpable. Under normal circumstances, a few days before Eid, people visit their loved ones and relatives. But this time, people have been unable to even contact their relatives and family members. Those either studying or working outside Kashmir, usually visit their families on Eid. But this time, many have chosen to stay away And the lucky . ones who managed to contact their family members living outside Kashmir asked them not come home. Despite Friday being largely peaceful, tension we evident as very few came out to offer namaz. BIG JUMP IN CBSE EXAM FEES FOR SC/ST STUDENTS EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE THE Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) has increased the fees for its Class 10 and 12 board exams for all students. While the amount to be paid by SC/ST students for five subjects has jumped from `50 to `1,200, general category pupils, who paid `750 earlier, will now have to shell out `1,500. In case the students opt for an extra subject in the Class 12 exams, they have to pay `300 more. Students who are 100% visually impaired are however exempted from paying the fees. “Any student, who fails to deposit the difference in the examination fee before the last date, will not be registered and not be allowed to appear in the 2019-20 examination,” a CBSE official was quoted as saying by PTI. Students register for the exams when they are in Class 9 and 11. Due to rain, edex supplement could not be distributed along with today’s edition. It will be distributed along with Tuesday’s edition. 18 PAGES, INCLUDING 4 PAGES OF KOCHI EXPRESS
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