Thiruvananthapuram/Chennai: As many as 218 fishermen from Kerala, stranded in the sea off the coast due to inclement weather conditions triggered by cyclone Ockhi, were brought safely to the shore on Friday even as the death toll rose to seven in the state.

Cyclone Ockhi, which in Bengali means 'eye', on Friday intensified into a severe cyclonic storm and moved to the Arabian Sea. It lay centered about 80km north-northeast of Minicoy in Lakshadweep.

Under its influence, heavy rains continued to lash coastal areas of the state, crippling normal


On Thursday, four people had lost their lives in rain-related incidents while three persons died today, official sources said.

Five people were killed and 22 fishermen went missing as torrential rains lashed Tamil Nadu's Kanyakumari district.

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K Palanisamy on Friday announced an ex-gratia of Rs 4 lakh to the kin of the five people killed.

Meanwhile, a red alert was issued for the Lakshadweep islands as the cyclone continued to move towards the archipelago on Friday.

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