Ms. Rekha Das, Panchayat head, Mundakayam village in district Kottayam, Kerala and Mr. Suresh K.R. village head, Jhutiya in district Nainital have reached out to SEEDS and requested support for their villages who have been impacted by the heavy rains since 14 October and 16 October in the respective locations. The Mundakayam panchayat, having a total population of 38,445 has been receiving continuous rain leading to overflow of the river Manimalayar, causing subsequent flooding in the area. Most of the people living in the panchayat are from economically weaker sections like daily-wage earners and plantation workers who barely manage to make their ends meet.
Over 1000 people have been evacuated from Mundakayam panchayat. 61 houses have been washed away and more than 450 houses have been damaged as per the current update. While in Jhutiya village 50% of the land has been damaged and around 100 houses raised to the ground, leaving many trapped in the debris. Extensive damage to livestock has also been reported. As per our team on the ground in the village and Ms. Rekha Das and MR. K.R. Suresh, there is an urgent need to provide access to hygiene items and essential items since most of their belongings have been washed away. Water sources in the area like community wells require urgent cleaning to cater to the drinking water needs.
On the other hand, a population of more than 1100 has been impacted in village Jhutiya due to incessant rains followed by landslides. Majority of inhabitants in village are farmers and labourers by profession. 12 people have already been reported dead in the area. The unprecedented flooding has made the lives of the people in the villages extremely difficult and may lead to further loss in the future. The ongoing adverse impact of COVID 19, additional challenges posed by the floods call for urgent humanitarian aid.
Urgent support will help the people of the villages to mitigate the adverse health impacts related to the flooding and help them to cope with the ongoing COVID 19 pandemic. Many people who have been displaced due to inundated homes and landslides do not have homes to go back to and the situation is expected to remain precarious for the next few months. Additionally, with damage to the houses and other sanitation facilities, urgent repair and rebuilding work initiative needs to be addressed.