Kozhikode: The death toll in the Cyclone Ockhi that hit the Kerala coast is feared to cross 100, with 66 confirmed dead and reports emerging that six bodies were found adrift Kozhikode coast. A search team has been assigned to recover the six bodies that were spotted by fishermen off the Kozhikode coast.
The toll from the November 30 cyclone had mounted to 66 on Wednesday after 12 more bodies were recovered, nine of them from Kochi and Beypore.
The body recovered from the sea eight nautical miles off Palapetty in Ponnani had a necklace worn by Sabarimala pilgrims, and was completely decomposed.
A body kept in the Thiruvanathapuram Medical College Hospital mortuary has been identified. A DNA test identified that the deceased was Mary John, 30, of Pozhiyur South. Eight bodies remain unidentified in the same mortuary.
Eight people are under medical care in the hospital. Michael, 42, of Poonthura is still in a serious condition, but hospital authorities said he has improved slightly. Simon (37) from Vizhinjam has left the hospital.
Chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan had on Wednesday said the government would speed up relief and rehabilitation work.
The Rs 20 lakh financial assistance for families of fishermen who died in the cyclone would be given at one stretch, he said. Efforts were on to identify the bodies through DNA tests, he said.
Scores of fishermen are still reported to be missing even a fortnight after the cyclone wreaked havoc along the southern districts of Kerala.