Kerala Flood Situation Worsens, Death Toll Rises to 67

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# Kerala's flood situation continues to be critical, nearly every other village in the state are affected in this deluge, according to the CMO.

Expressing concern over the flood situation in Kerala, he took to Twitter to make a fervent appeal to people for help by contributing to the chief minister's relief fund.

# On Wednesday, a red alert has been sounded in all 14 districts of the state. "DGCA is coordinating." To the state government's request to allow small aircraft to land at the naval airport in Kochi, the minister said they were exploring alternative landing places for small aircraft.

The arrival operations at the airport were suspended for two hours on August 9 in view of possible inundation in the airport area.

More rain has been forecast till Saturday.

The shutters of 35 of the 39 dams in Kerala, including the 123-year-old Mullaperiyar Dam, have been opened for the first time in history, leaving large areas of the state at the risk of floods.

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Kochi city airport will also stay closed until Saturday afternoon.

Last week, the gates of the Idukki dam were opened after 26 years to release water that had reached the maximum permissible levels.

Rescue operations are in full swing in flood-affected Kerala.

Kochi airport, one of the busiest in the country, handles 42 domestic arrivals and 37 departures every day.

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Sunday said that the impact of the disaster is likely to be felt for a long time. The authorities hinted that the operations may not resume as expected earlier as the Periyar continued to be in spate. Now four airlines - Qatar Airways, Jet Airways, Air India Express and Indigo - operates flights to Kochi daily from Doha.

In fact, due to flooding and landslips, several trains at the Thiruvananthapuram-Nagarcoil route have been cancelled.

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The chief secretary was asked to contact neighbouring states for emergency assistance.

The situation in Pathanamthitta district, especially Ranni and its surroundings areas, appeared to be bleak since late Wednesday evening as, local CPI-M legislator Raju Abraham, said things were turning from bad to worse and he was receiving frantic calls from his contituents in Ranni.

"We are with the (state) government and the people".

More than 1.5 lakh people have been lodged in relief camps across the state, Vijayan said.

More than 50,000 have sought shelter in relief camps.

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