Kochi

When a family escaped the jaws of death

A house that survived the landslip at Nalam block in Puthakulam ward, Kothamangalam, on Friday evening. Photo:H.Vibhu.

A house that survived the landslip at Nalam block in Puthakulam ward, Kothamangalam, on Friday evening. Photo:H.Vibhu.   | Photo Credit: H_Vibhu

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Sixty-two-year-old Kumaran has seen his fair share of rain and thunder.

But the downpour on Friday evening that tore through the houses of his neighbours at Nalam block in Puthakulam ward near here was terrifying. In just seconds, they were buried alive under the falling rubble and mud, even as Kumaran gathered courage to run to a safer destination along with his wife and two sons.

“It was like a bang. I heard somebody saying that the mountain was coming down. I came out from my room to see huge boulders and debris moving downwards. It was all over in a few seconds,” Kumaran said.

His house miraculously withstood the onslaught of Nature and now stands out like a mute witness to the horrifying tragedy that swept away everything else in the vicinity.

“We were like a family. All of us had a very good relationship. I am yet to come to terms with their death,” Kumaran said about the loss of five lives in the massive landslip.

Even though the rescue crew requested him to move to nearby relief camps, Kumaran could not leave his house, as it remains a precious possession. “I fear that another landslip will wash out my home. I can’t leave this place,” he said.

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Printable version | Dec 12, 2019 8:52:25 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/when-a-family-escaped-the-jaws-of-death/article3794795.ece

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