After days of incessant rains in the southern Indian state of Kerala and a few parts of Karnataka, expats residing in the UAE are concerned for their families and relatives back home. The rains were followed by flooding, which has resulted in loss of property and a few lives.

Yasir Hameed, a social worker in Dubai and Sharjah said that the situation has been brought under control across his district, Kozhikode. “Schools have been shut until further notice and people are advised to restrict themselves at home to avoid any loss. Water has entered many fields, resulting in loss of crops,” said Hameed.

“The government has brought the situation under control, but we are worried about more heavy rain in the coming days. Many houses and roads were submerged under water and thankfully it has been cleared for now,” said Hameed.

Expats are now recalling the losses faced a few years ago, as many districts in Kerala were waterlogged as a result of heavy rains in 2018 and 2020. “Earlier, severe floods affected Kerala, due to unusually high rainfall during the monsoon season in 2018 and 2020. It was the worst floods in Kerala in nearly a century. Many people died while several went missing,” said Mohammed Shareef, who hails from Payannur in Kannur district of Kerala.

“We have been informed the situation is under control for now, but we are worried of the flooding which happened earlier,” Shareef reiterated.

The Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) issued a yellow alert in many districts across Kerala on Saturday. The Kerala Disaster Management has advised the residents to maintain caution and has warned of landslides in hilly regions, which were hit by heavy rainfall in the last few days.

Similar situations in Karnataka

Similar situations were also recorded in a few coastal towns in Karnataka. Ashok Bailur, a resident of Abu Hail in Dubai said that the situation is very tense in Sulia and Dharmasthala, near Mangalore, in Karnataka. “The water has subsided in many parts of Mangalore City, but a few nearby towns are experiencing floods. Schools have been shut until further notice in a few towns and the government is trying its best to minimize damage due to the floods,” said Bailur.

“We have scheduled a meeting with the community members in Dubai to plan up a course of action for the victims of the floods,” he added.

Bhatkal, a coastal town in Karnataka too experienced heavy rainfall on August 2 resulting in flooding across the town. “On August 2, we woke up to see photos of our hometown submerged in water. The images were circulating all over on social media platforms. It's scary and we're worried a lot,” said Emaad DF, a Sharjah resident.

“Luckily, the water drained in a day’s time. The flooding caused immense loss to properties and small business establishments across the town,” said Emaad.

Thousands of people from Bhatkal and surrounding towns of Shirur, Baindoor, Manki and Murdeshwar make up a strong NRI community in the UAE.

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