"Many have come forward to help Kerala".
Kerala was hit by extreme rainfall in May and then again this month, starting August 8. There are more than seven lakh people in relief camps at the moment and the government was hopeful of carrying out rehabilitation activities with the same zeal and responsibility which was seen during rescue operations.
Every fisherman who took part in the rescue act would be given Rs 3,000 each, he said. Relief assistance, including air-dropping food packets and water, is also underway.
As rescue operations in Kerala on Monday entered their final stages, the biggest challenge before the authorities in the flood aftermath turned into managing the over 5,500 relief camps housing more than 7,00,000 people across the state.
Witnesses say that looking down on towns in flooded Kerala is like looking down on a sea dotted with houses and cars in muddy flood waters.
"They went home to visit their families, now they are trapped there".
Authorities are rushing to bring drinking water to the most affected areas.
Thousands stranded in India as deadly monsoon floods continue
Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan announced late Friday that the monsoon death toll had dramatically risen to 324. Other distressed messages were shared online from people trapped inside temples and hospitals as well as their homes.
Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said there was no shortage of food in the state as traders had stocked up ahead of Onam, the state's biggest festival which falls on August 25. Landslides have also contributed to the death toll. Fondly known as God's Own Country, the state is rich in natural resources and a major beneficiary of the monsoon that typically pelt down between June and September with occasional break phases.
In a press release on Sunday, India's Meteorological Department said that while more rain is in the forecast, it is expected to decrease gradually throughout the week.
On 20 August, the Centre declared the devastating floods in Kerala a "calamity of severe nature" as the state braced for the huge task of reconstructing the destroyed infrastructure and rehabilitating lakhs of people rendered homeless.
K Santosh, Director at IMD's Thiruvananthapuram centre, said all alerts had been withdrawn and the state experienced only light to moderate rainfall on Monday. Regions such as Ala, a village in the Chenganoor taluka of Alappuzha district are still waterlogged.
"The flood has bonded the people like never before, sharing whatever they had".
Union Minister Alphons Kannanthanam on Monday turned down the demand of Congress leaders to declare Kerala flood as a "national calamity" and said there was no provision in the Disaster Management Act 2005 to do so.
However, one "Thanks" note, painted on the roof top of a house, shared by the Indian Navy on social media, is winning hearts and lifting spirits all over the country. However, the adjacent main Kochi airport that had been shut down on August 15 due to flooded runways is still closed.