Rescue efforts on as flood toll in Karnataka rises to over 130

      Rescue and rehabilitation efforts for the flood-hit in Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh have acquired an urgency after the death toll from incessant rains crossed to over 130. The Army, Navy and Air Force have been called out for rescue and relief operations. At the Air Force Station Yelahanka in Bangalore , a around-the-clock flood relief cell has been set up to oversee relief work. According to IAF sources, four helicopters have been conducting sorties in Karnataka's Bellary and Raichur districts. Six more helicopters are being deployed. The Madras Engineering Group and Centre (MEGC) of the Indian Army has deployed 32 boats in rain-hit regions. Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa has said that Centre has been approached for emergency assistance and particularly described the situation in North Karnataka as grim and serious. He said the state government has released a sum of Rs 100 crore for relief and rescue operations. According to official sources, over 26,000 houses have collapsed in North Karnataka . Most of the eleven districts in the region are inundated, as all the rivers are flowing above the danger mark. Road and rail transport services have also been disrupted. Union Minister of State for Railways K.H. Muniyappa had on Friday sought the intervention of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Home Minister P. Chidambaram and Defence Minster A.K. Antony in rescue operations in the wake of the unprecedented flood situation.

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