Alappuzha being among the five districts that could be affected if the Mullaperiyar dam collapsed, the district police is drawing up a contingency plan that aims at timely action in case of a flood and also to curb law and order situations that might arise in case of a calamity.
According to sources, similar plans were being drawn out by the other four districts of Idukki, Kottayam, Ernakulam and Pathanamthitta as well with a preliminary report already submitted by R. Sreelekha, IG (Ernakulam Range) to DGP Jacob Punnoose.
The plan in Alappuzha centres on the assumption that the impact on the district could be a flood of unprecedented magnitude. Accordingly, high-rise areas in the district are being identified for emergency evacuations, with a time-frame of four to five hours kept in mind.
District Superintendent of Police K.J. James said the police had already collected details of all modes of transport available with each department, including KSRTC buses, apart from other sectors including motorboats, houseboats and their ilk. Arrangements would be made to bring in additional rescue personnel from unaffected districts while similar arrangements would be made to combat any possible outbreaks of looting or other law and order issues that could crop in such situations.
The police were also collecting the details of the health care infrastructure in the district, with respect to number of doctors in each healthcare institution, number of beds in each hospital etc., Mr. James said. Schools where relief camps could be set up, routes that could be used in case of emergencies, areas that had to be evacuated with top priority etc., were all part of the plan.
One of major issues that police, especially in areas like Kochi in Ernakulam district, would face was the chaos that traffic would end up in event of flooding of streets and the ensuing commotion, which would offer ample space for miscreants to operate. Special plans were being drawn out in all districts to handle such situations as well, another senior police officer said, adding that another round of meetings to review the preparations was likely to be held shortly with police chiefs from all five districts to meet with higher-ups.