History repeats itself. Life in Chennai was paralysed on Monday due to incessant heavy rain spells in the last 24 hours caused by cyclone Michaung in the Bay of Bengal. Five deaths were reported due to electrocution and tree falls. On the same day in 2015, December 4, the city witnessed a similar unprecedented spell that was never seen for decades, leaving the city crippled.
Most offices and manufacturers, including Foxconn and Pegatron, makers of Apple iPhones, were closed due to the heavy rain, say wire reports.
On Monday, life was thrown out of gear due to the heavy spell, with all modes of transport affected badly. Citizens took to social media to post videos of extreme flooding in various parts of the city.
S Balachandran, Additional Director General of Meteorology, Regional Meteorological Centre (RMC), Chennai
There were videos of a crocodile crossing the road in the outskirts; cars floating, roads caved in and people struggling to walk in waist-high waters.
Chennai airport’s airfield closed during the day due to flooding and will remain shut for arrival and departure operations till Tuesday 9 am, said a tweet by the Chennai Airport.
As the water level at Bridge No 167 near Sullurpeta station reached the danger mark, railway services from Chennai Central were stopped in the morning. In several parts of the city, there was no power since Sunday night.
Union Home Minister Amit Shah spoke to Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin and Puducherrry CM N Rangaswamy and took stock of the measures taken to tackle the challenging weather conditions caused by the cyclone.
He assured all necessary assistance from the Centre to secure lives. Adequate deployment of the NDRF has already been made and additional teams are ready for further assistance.
- Also read: Chennai floods: When will we ever learn?
The India Meteorological Department (IMD) said that the severe cyclonic storm Michuang was at 100 km east-northeast of Chennai. It continued to move northwards at 10 kmph speed.
It is likely to cross the south Andhra Pradesh coast between Nellore and Machilipatnam close to Bapatla during the forenoon of December 5 as ‘a severe cyclonic storm.