Alert issued across Kerala

Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala government on Wednesday issued an alert across the state, particularly for the coastal belt, as most parts of the state experienced mild tremor in in the wake of a massive earthquake in Indonesia triggering fears of a tsunami.

Chief Minister Oommen Chandy, however, said there was no need for panic though the alert was issued just for the people and the authorities to maintain vigil.

Going by the reports received by the government by agencies like IMD, possibility of a tsunami could not be totally ruled out and people had been asked to keep a watch over the situation, Chandy told reporters after a cabinet meeting.

Chandy said as per IMD repsort, even if the tsunami strikes it would not be as intense as the one that had hit the state in 2004. Fishermen had been asked not to venture into sea for another four hours, Chandy said.

The dam sites and in the state were also under observation as there had been reports of waves having occurred in some of the reservoirs.

People in various parts of Kerala, including the state capital and Kochi, experienced mild tremors in the wake of the Indonesian quake.

In Kochi, panic prevailed for a while as people came out of offices and highrise buildings. However, no damage to buildings or other properties was reported from anywhere in the state.