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Heavy rains lash coastal districts of Tamil Nadu, death toll rises to 71

17 November 2015

There was no let up in the fury of the Northeast monsoon in Tamil Nadu which pounded the northern coastal districts.

Meanwhile, authorities have forecast more rains in the coming days in the state, where the death toll mounted to 71.

Twelve more persons died in incidents of drowning and wall-collapse between 11 November and 15 November, chief minister J Jayalalithaa said as she reviewed situation at a a meeting with her cabinet colleagues and officials.

Offering condolences to the victims, she announced Rs4 lakh by way of relief to their families.

Normal life in Tamil Nadu had come to a halt with incessant rains leading to heavy water-logging of large areas. Meanwhile, authorities have shut down educational institutions and the weather office has forecast heavy downpour over the next three days in the state, Puducherry and coastal Andhra Pradesh.

Chennai and suburbs recorded heavy rains overnight throwing normal life out of gear, with  subways at T Nagar and Saidapet in the city inundated, resulting in their closure.

Several parts of Chennai have been inundated since Sunday.

The Tamil Nadu capital, which received 27 cm of rainfall, was flooded in low-lying areas, mostly comprising residential colonies built along or on reclaimed lakebeds.

Pedestrians had to wade through knee-deep water fearing live electric wires and electric shock.

The civic authorities had to press into service high-powered pumps to remove water from inundated residential areas and subways.

The famous Marina beach was also submerged.

Jayalalithaa told the media, "When rains that should have been realised in three months pour within a few days, any number of preventive measures will not suffice as stagnation and resulting damage are unavoidable."

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