NEW DELHI (Web Desk) – One of India’s oldest newspapers has not been printed for the first time in 137 years due to rains and floods in the southern city of Chennai (Madras).
The Hindu, published daily since 1878, did not come out on Wednesday as workers could not access the press, the BBC reported.
As heavy rains continue to lash Chennai, several parts of the city have come to a standstill. Electricity has been turned off in some areas as a precautionary measure.
A holiday has been declared for all schools and colleges. Telephone services taken a hit as several areas were cut-off due to water-logging.
The rains have suspended flights and trains and hundreds of people are without power.
“Our Maraimalainagar township was not accessible for the people who run the plant. So, none of our staff could reach the plant. It is located about 30kms (18 miles) from the city in Maraimalainagar,” Mr Murali, The Hindu’s publisher, told BBC.
“The printing press plant is large so we put it up outside the city. Even if we had printed the paper, I doubt if it could have been distributed in the city,” he added.
Other city newspapers like the Times of India, the Deccan Chronicle and the New Indian Express were printed, although it is unclear if they had reached readers in the city.
The army has been deployed to rescue thousands of stranded people after two days of heavy rains.
Flights from the city’s airport have been indefinitely suspended after flood waters entered the runway and tarmac areas on Tuesday evening.
The weather office in Chennai has predicted more rains in Tamil Nadu over the next 24 hours due to presence of a low pressure in Bay of Bengal.
Naval warship INS Airavat wth 6 integral boats, 20 divers and relief material off to Chennai from Vishakapattinam. It is expected to reach tomorrow.