Kerala: On Monday, heavy rains lashed many parts of Kerala disrupting the Assembly by-election being held in Ernakulam, one of the five seats where polling is being held and affecting train services in the state.
The movement of trains and vehicles through low-lying areas was affected and the state government has put NDRF teams on alert in Kollam, Alappuzha, Ernakulam and Pathanamthitta to deal with the heavy rains.
The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has issued orange alert issued for Monday in 12 districts, including Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam, Alapuzha, Pathanamthitta, Kottayam, Idukki, Ernakulam, Thrissur, Palakkad, Malappuram, Kozhikode and Wayanad.
The Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan’s office tweeted: “Stay weather aware. Inclement weather is very likely across the State. Prepare for more downpours. Orange alerts have been issued for districts from Thiruvananthapuram to Wayanad. Kannur and Kasargod are under yellow alert.”
“We are closely monitoring the situation. Follow instructions from local officials. Listen to instructions regarding evacuation or sheltering. If advised to evacuate, do so immediately,” the tweet added.
Many polling booths in Ernakulam were submerged and political parties have asked the Election Commission to postpone the election, reported Hindustan Times.
“A few polling stations have been shifted from the ground floor to the first floor in Ernakulam Assembly constituency. Around 500 officials, including police, are making the arrangements. We will wait for the reports from the district collectors of the constituencies. We have made arrangements to transport voters to the polling stations in some places. If needed, we will extend the polling time as well," said Tika Ram Meena, Kerala's Chief Electoral Officer.
By-elections are being held in Vattiyoorkavu assembly constituency in Thiruvananthapuram, Konni in Pathanamthitta, Aroor in Alapuzha, Ernakulam and Manjeshwar in Kasaragod.
Three camps have been opened in Ernakulam district to relocate the people affected by rains, reported News18.
IMD has also issued an orange alert issued for Tuesday in 13 districts of the state, including Kollam, Alapuzha, Pathanamthitta, Kottayam, Idukki, Ernakulam, Thrissur, Palakkad, Malappuram, Kozhikode, Wayanad, Kannur and Kasaragod.