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February 2018
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Cyclone Ockhi in Kerala: Church says 201 missing
 
(Thiruvananthapuram, Dec 05, 2017):Bodies of three fishers were found off Kochi on Tuesday taking the death toll in Cyclone Ockhi to 32 in the state even as search operations continued for the sixth consecutive day. While the control room at the disaster management authority maintained that the official figure of the missing fishermen stood at 92, the Thiruvananthapuram Latin Archdiocese said there was still no information about 201 from the district alone.

Vicar General Eugine H. Pereira said the figure could be much higher. “We were extremely concerned about the safety of 109 fishermen who went to sea in small boats,” he told a press conference here. Meanwhile, a coastguard ship rescued 72 fishers including 14 from Kerala. Navy, Air Force and Coast Guard continued search operations along with fishermen for the sixth consecutive day. The weekly cabinet meeting on Wednesday is set to announce a comprehensive package including compensation for those affected by Cyclone Ockhi.

The State Disaster Management Authority which came under severe criticism is likely to be reconstituted. Top LDF leaders including CPM state secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan, CPI central secretariat member Pannyan Raveendran, and other CPI leaders T. J. Anjalose and C. Divakaran visited coastal Vizhinjam and other areas and consoled the families waiting for their dear ones to return. As many as 34 fishermen rescued from the sea are currently under treatment at the Medical College Hospital. Six persons were discharged on Tuesday.

One more body at the mortuary was identified on Tuesday as Joseph, 40, of Pulluvila. Two unidentified bodies are in medical college, four in Sri Chitra and three in General Hospital mortuaries and the samples from these bodies were taken for DNA test at the time of post-mortem.


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