Cyclone Amphan: At least 72 Dead in West Bengal

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At least 72 people in West Bengal lost their lives and around 4.5 million people across 1,500 villages in Odisha have been affected due to Cyclone Amphan which hit India’s eastern coast with winds gusting up to 185 kmph, informed the state government.

Chief Secretary of Odisha Asit Tripathy told union cabinet secretary Rajiv Gauba that there was no loss of lives in the state even as the cyclone brought a heavy downpour and winds speeding up to 100 kmph in some coastal areas.

However, the cyclone hits West Bengal and Bangladesh which tore down power lines, uprooted trees, caused flooding, triggered mass evacuations and left at least 72 people dead in West Bengal.

In Odisha, nearly two lakh people were evacuated from their homes and placed safely in different shelters during the cyclone. The government sent a total of 210 medical teams and 75 teams of veterinary doctors to the affected areas, informed Odisha chief secretary. He also said that the collectors have been asked to submit reports of the affected areas and the damages caused in the two days.

The IMD, however, informed the state government earlier that the wind speeds at Paradip and Dhamara coast would be around 135 kph which turned out to be correct. The Odisha government said that the IMD made accurate predictions on ferocious cyclonic storms like Fani (2019) and Phailin (2013).

Odisha chief minister Naveen Patnaik separately conducted an aerial survey of the affected areas of the state’s coastal and adjoining districts that took the brunt of Amphan.

In a tweet, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said authorities were working on the ground to ensure all possible assistance to the cyclone-hit people. “My thoughts are with the people of Odisha as the state bravely battles the effects of Cyclone Amphan. Authorities are working on the ground to ensure all possible assistance to the those affected. I pray that the situation normalises at the earliest,” Modi tweeted.

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