30 killed, over 50,000 homeless as heavy rains continue across Kerala

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Dams and rivers overflowed, parts of highways collapsed, and homes were swept away in severe flooding in more than half of Kerala on Friday in the third day of heavy downpour that has claimed the lives of 30 people and left nearly 54,000 homeless.

The flooding became more intense after all five gates of the Idukki dam were opened and shutters of more than two dozen dams were lifted, making the Periyar river swell further. The rains had already increased its flow. Almost all 40-odd rivers in the state are in spate, officials said.

According to officials from the state disaster management unit, six more people died since Thursday, taking the flood toll to 30. The majority of the deaths happened in the first 36 hours when the downpour caused flash floods and landslides.

Officials from the state meteorological office said that heavy rain was expected for two more days.

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