Death toll from cyclone in India's West Bengal rises to 80

2020-05-22 15:29:42Xinhua Editor : Gu Liping ECNS App Download

The Death toll from cyclonic storm Amphan in India's eastern state of West Bengal rose to 80 Friday as Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi embarked on an aerial tour to review the damage.

"Eighty people died in this cyclone. We have evacuated more than 600,000 people. Time and density of cyclone was worse. It is more than a national disaster," West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee told media.

According to Banerjee, the radius of the cyclone was 450 km.

"I have never seen anything like this in my life. There was severe disruption in electricity supply, even I did not have electricity at my home. Mobile connectivity has also been disrupted, but don't worry, everything will be alright," she said.

Meanwhile, Modi has landed at Kolkata airport, officials said. On Friday morning he took off from Delhi to undertake an aerial survey of West Bengal and Odisha and see for himself the damage caused by Amphan.

"He will conduct aerial surveys and take part in review meetings, where aspects of relief and rehabilitation will be discussed," the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) said in a statement on Thursday night.

After West Bengal, Modi will fly onwards for an aerial survey of Odisha.

The cyclone also caused widespread devastation in Odisha, damaging power and telecom infrastructure in several coastal districts.

The cyclonic storm triggering gusty winds up to 190 kmph and rain battered West Bengal and coastal Odisha on Wednesday evening, flattening makeshift houses and uprooting electric poles and trees. 


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