Extremely heavy rain batters Sirkazhi; 20,000 hectares of agricultural fields submerged

Sikazhi town in Mayiladuthurai district recorded 44 cm of rainfall in 24 hours, the district averaged 25 cm; standing paddy crops are covered in sheets of water; residents of flooded villages are being evacuated

November 12, 2022 12:11 pm | Updated 12:11 pm IST - TIRUCHI

An inundated village in Mayiladuthurai district.

An inundated village in Mayiladuthurai district. | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

Extremely heavy rainfall battered parts of Mayiladuthurai district on Friday, with Sirkazhi taluk recording a staggering 44 cm of rainfall in 24 hours.

Normal life was thrown out of gear as the district received an average of 25 cm of rainfall, leading to the inundation of thousands of acres of agricultural fields with standing samba and thaladi paddy crops, as well as of residential areas in Mayiladuthurai, Sirkazhi, Kollidam and other parts of the district.

As per the rainfall data furnished by the district administration, Sirkazhi recorded 436.20 mm of rainfall in the 24-hour period ending at 6 a.m. on Saturday. The chief amount of rainfall recorded in other parts of the district during the same period were as follows (in mm): Kollidam - 316.80; Sembanarkovil – 242.30; Tharangampadi – 184; Mayiladuthurai 161.60 and Manalmedu 160.

Sirkazhi town recorded very heavy rainfall of 12 cm between 8 and 10 p.m. on Friday and 13 cm in the next couple of hours. According to local residents, the rain has abated in Sirkazhi and Mayiladuthurai areas since midnight.

Farmer representatives said such heavy rainfall within 24 hours was unprecedented in the recent decades. Standing paddy crops, most of them less than 30 days old, have been submerged under sheets of water across the district. For many farmers in Sirzkazhi taluk, it has been a double whammy, as an earlier spell of 22 cm of rainfall, also within 24 hours, on November 2 had caused extensive inundation and the water has just been drained from the fields before this second spell of rains hit.

Minister for Environment Siva V.Meyyanathan, who began an inspection of the affected areas in Mayiladuthurai along with Collector R. Lalitha on Saturday morning, said initial reports indicated that standing crops on about 20,000 hectares have been inundated in the district. A survey of the crop damage would be done and the farmers’ demand for compensation will be taken up with the Chief Minister, he said. Steps have been taken to move people in some of the flooded villages to special camps, he added.

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