TN rain toll rises to 48, MeT forecasts heavy rains next week

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Chennai, Nov 12: The toll in rain-related incidents in Tamil Nadu increased to 48 today even as MeT office forecast another spell of heavy showers next week following formation of a new trough of low pressure.

The toll in rain-related incidents rose to 48 today with the state government reporting another 17 deaths in the last two days, most of them from Cuddalore. Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa condoled the death of the victims, a majority of whom died due to drowning in flood waters and announced Rs four lakh each to their families as assistance from the Disaster Relief Fund.

Chennai

"A new trough of low pressure has formed in South Andaman Sea. It is expected to develop into a low pressure in South Eastern Bay of Bengal on November 14," Regional Meteorological Centre (RMC) Chennai Director S R Ramanan told reporters.

This formation was expected to bring in heavy rains to the state next week, RMC officials said. Several parts of the state, including Chennai, are just limping back to normalcy after being battered by heavy rains under the influence of a low pressure that intensified into a deep depression and crossed the state coast on November 9 with Cuddalore District being the worst hit.

The government had yesterday said there were 31 deaths, including 27 from Cuddalore District, in rain-related incidents including drowning, wall collapse and electrocution in the past two days. Jayalalithaa had yesterday held a review meeting here with officials to assess the situation in Cuddalore where relief and rehabilitation measures were being taken up in full swing.

Senior state Ministers, including O Panneerselvam, deputed by Jayalalithaa, visited the rain-affected district today and held consultations with Collector S Suresh Kumar and other officials. They directed the officials to carry relief measures including restoring supply of power and drinking water on 'war-footing', officials said.

A report from Cuddalore said incessant rains had severely damaged standing crops in Chidambaram and Panruti. Tamizhaga Vazhvurimai Katchi founder T Velmurugan said Cuddalore had been repeatedly affected by natural calamities and urged the Centre to declare it as a 'disaster-affected district' and award a relief package of Rs 1,000 crore. Meanwhile, several parts of Chennai and the suburbs, including commercial hub of Velachery, received rains overnight inundating low-lying areas further damaging roads.

The weather office forecast rains in many places in southern districts with heavy rains in some areas and over a few places in northern Tamil Nadu for the next 24 hours.

PTI

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