144 missing in Aranayake landslide; flooding death toll climbs to 58

144 missing in Aranayake landslide; flooding death toll climbs to 58

May 19, 2016   06:04 pm

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The death toll in torrential rains in Sri Lanka rose to 58 on Thursday as search and rescue operations for survivors continued, especially in the central region that was hit by landslides leaving more than hundred missing.

The Disaster Management Center (DMC) said that 420,097 people have been affected due to floods and landslides out of which 299,806 persons are displaced. 

The DMC confirmed that 144 persons are missing due to the landslide in Aranayake, Kegalle. Three villages — Siripura, Elangapitiya and Pallebage —were hit hard by a landslide on Tuesday night.

Heavy fog, electrical outages and the loose ground also have complicated the search.

Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena visited Aranayake on Wednesday to meet the victims and promised full support from the government.

Hundreds of soldiers, engineers and doctors from the army have been deployed in affected areas for relief work.

A depression over the Bay of Bengal has caused heavy rainfall and strong winds in central and northern Sri Lanka.

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