An aerial photo of affected areas in Kanchipuram district. Photo: PTI
Photo: Ganesh Ganesh
Rescue workers transport residents via boat. Photo: PTI
Residents travel in an OLA boat through a submerged part of Chennai. Photo: Ola/Twitter
Rescue workers help residents board a rescue boat in Chennai. Photo: PTI
Photo: Ganesh Ganesh
A bus seen completely submerged in Chennai. Photo: Ganesh Ganesh
An aerial view of Kanchipuram district. Photo: PTI
Chennai flood: boats on the streets, buses in water
Continuous torrential rain has paralysed most parts of the state of Tamil Nadu. The scale of the calamity can be gauged from the fact that state Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa has announced a Rs 500 crore relief package.
The trouble began on 9 November, when a deep depression over the Bay of Bengal crossed near the Tamil Nadu-Puducherry coast, resulting in heavy rain and flooding many parts of the state.
Official estimates put the death toll at 71.
In state capital Chennai, schools and colleges have been closed for more than a week now. Most train tracks across the city are submerged, and services have been cancelled or rescheduled.
The worst-hit areas in the city include Velachery, Tambaram, Old Mahabalipuram Road, Anna Nagar and Koyambedu.
Many roads in the IT corridor and the usually busy Velachery-Tambaram highway have also been inundated.
Boats are becoming a common sight on the streets, as many low-lying areas of Chennai are completely submerged in water.
The Chennai Corporation and private groups have started providing boat services in many low-lying areas of the city.
Taxi operator Ola has also got into the action, deploying boats armed with professional rowers to rescue people from waterlogged areas to safer places.
"While we are addressing the increased demand for transportation in city, we are working closely with local stakeholders to help ferry those stranded in waterlogged areas," said Ravi Teja, business head (Tamil Nadu) of Ola.
The boat service will be available for the next three days, and will be extended if water-logging continues, Ola added.