The eastern high range regions of the district bordering the neighbouring Idukki experienced widespread landslips and crop and property loss in the heavy rains that lashed the area during the past 24 hours. According to local residents, the major landslips occurred by 2 am on Sunday.
One of the largest landslides was in Oorickanad in Parathode grama panchayat where more than one acre of land gave in during the heavy rains, taking away nearly 400 rubber tress along with it. Large landslides have been reported from Vengathadam estate Pazhivithadam in the same panchayat. The area also suffered a string of minor landslips making the relief operations Sunday difficult.
According to preliminary information, at least two houses were totally destroyed in Koruthode panchayat which witnessed widespread landslides. Authorities feared landslips in interior forest areas which has resulted in flash floods downstream mainly in Azhutha river which joins Pamba at Kanamala. Landslides have been reported from Pallippady in Koruthode panchayat and Cholathadam in Poonjar Thekkekkara Panchayat.
The Kanamala causeway, one of the key links used by Sabarimala pilgrims from Tamil Nadu on their way to Sannidhanam, remained nearly 10 ft of water from Saturday night At least two houses on the roadside at this point were damaged in the flash floods.
The rains that continued incessantly for over 24 hours, however showed signs of weakening by Sunday Afternoon. However, the land has become so drenched that probability of further landslips were high in these areas, said P C George MLA in whose constituency most of these damages have occurred.
Meanwhile, the vehicular traffic on the Erattupetta-Pala road and Pala- Ponkunnam road remained disrupted for most of the day as road sides were dotted with series of minor landslips. Traffic on Kottayam-Kumily road from Mundakkayam to Kuttikanam too remained disrupted on account of minor landslips and up rooted trees. Water level in Meenachil river has risen to alarming levels breaching the bank in many places near Pala.
Meanwhile the Revenue Minister Thiruvanchoor Radhakrishnan said the issue of financial assistance for the affected would be taken up in the next Cabinet meeting. Already Revenue authorities have been directed to take stock of the situation and finalise the report at the earliest, he said.