Saturday, December 03, 2005

Cuddalore battles incessant rains-NDTV

The following news item was originally from NDTV on 29th of November

For a district that literally means 'town by the sea', Cuddalore is completely at sea battling the merciless rain god.

Take for example, the 5,000 villagers in Perampet, for whom water is now associated with death, destruction, disease and misery.

Three thousand hectares of cultivable land, where farmers grew paddy, drumsticks, flowers and bananas, have been under water since 25 October.

Three spells of heavy rainfall have meant that the water had no chance to dry up. "People are just managing to save their lives. We have lost crops, cattle and fishing nets," says a villager.

Grim situation

Three villages ahead of Perampet have been cut off for several days now and boats are the only lifeline left. And the situation is pretty much the same even closer to the district headquarters.

"We have lost all our household goods. We have just managed to come out alive," explains a villager who belongs to the Alapakkam panchayat.

Relief supplies are being brought in to the affected areas but with thousands of people rendered homeless, it is an uphill task for the district administration.

"During tsunami we had to attend to only 50 villages but in these floods, the administration's focus is on a large area of 420 villages of which 383 are affected in a big way,'' said Gagandeep Singh, Collector, Cuddalore.

Cuddalore suffers every time there is heavy rainfall in Tamil Nadu's catchment areas because five major rivers pass through the district before flowing into the sea. But geography alone cannot be a crime to push Cuddalore on to the road.

© NDTV 2005

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