Odisha 8 killed as cyclone Fani pounds Odisha coast, alert in Bengal

Bhubaneswar/Kolkata/Visakhapatnam, May 3 (IANS)Eight people were killed in Odisha after a severe tropical cyclone made land fall on the eastern coast of the country on Friday, with wind speed of up to 200 km per hour pounding the state's coastal region, massively damaging property and disrupting flight operations, communication, rail and road connectivity. The Cyclone Fani was set to cross several districts in Odisha before advancing to the neighboring West Bengal. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who was campaigning in Rajasthan's Hindaun, near Jaipur, said the Centre stood with the people hit by the cyclone. "I want to assure the families affected by the cyclone that we are with them at this point of hour. We have collected fresh updates from the officials and had released a fund of Rs1,000 crore for relief work on Thursday."

In Odisha, about 10,000 villages and 52 Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) were likely to be affected by the cyclonic storm. The state has activated an emergency helpline number --+91674253417 -- for Cyclone Fani. The deaths in Odisha were reportedly caused by falling trees, authorities said. The airports in Odisha and West Bengal have been shut down, resulting in the cancellation of many flights. Civil Aviation Minister Suresh Prabhu has directed his Ministry officials to continuously monitor the situation.

The Indian Railway has can-celled 223 trains in the Bhadrak-Vizianagaram section along the coastal lines of Odisha on the Kolkata-Chennai route till May4, officials said. The Assam government too has sounded an alert following a warning of the cyclone hitting the state and other parts of the north eastern region in the early hours of Saturday. The cyclone is also expected to affect the regular pattern of weather conditions in some parts of Nepal, weather officials said. In Odisha, widespread dam-ages to property have been reported as thousands of trees and electricity poles were uprooted under the impact of the cyclonic storm which made its land fall in Puri. To read more: Click here

The Avenue Mail, 04, May, 2019