Kerala rains: Kochi International airport suspends operations till Sunday

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In wake of torrential rains since Tuesday, Kochi airport has been shut till 3 pm on Sunday after rainwater gushed into the parking area. Flights coming to the airport were diverted.

"As the apron area is waterlogged due to the flood, all aircraft operations have been suspended at Kochi airport till 9 am on August 9", said a statement issued earlier on Thursday by the Cochin International Airport Ltd (CIAL). The official Twitter handle of Kerala CM tweeted, "CIAL has informed that the operations of the Cochin International Airport, Kochi (COK) will remain suspended till 1500 hrs of Sunday (11/08/2019)".

The airport was rendered non-functional for a fortnight in August, 2018 due to inundation.

In Wayanad, which is among the worst affected, 9,951 people have taken shelter in 105 camps, while in Malappuram, 4,106 people have been shifted to 26 camps.

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There is no power in the area over the past three three days and no communication is possible, he said. At least 22 people have died in the floods since Thursday, the state government said; officials said the number of dead is likely to rise. There has been widespread heavy to extremely heavy rainfall across Kerala, leading to flooding and landslides.

Airport Operations suspended till midnight as a precautionary measure, he told reporters. Rescuers have recovered seven bodies and the state government is planning to airlift rescue equipment to the area, said Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan.

Examinations of the Kerala Public Service Commission and various Universities across the state, scheduled for Saturday have been postponed, officials said.

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