Middle East & Asia News

Cyclone Amphan has on Wednesday struck eastern India and Bangladesh, leaving a trail of destruction to property and killing of over 80 people, forcing residents to evacuate their homes, an official disclosed.

The cyclone, one of the most powerful storms to hit the regions in over a decade destroyed thousands of homes, causing flood with winds reaching 185 km/h. The city of Kolkata suffered major damage as buildings, electricity outage and infrastructure were affected.

According to Mamata Banerjee, the West Bengal Chief Minister, at least 72 people were killed by electrocution, collapsed walls, drowning or uprooted trees in India. Also, about 15 killed were reported to have been killed in Bangladesh.

"We are facing three crises: The coronavirus, the thousands of migrants who are returning home and now the cyclone," said Banjeree.

"The situation is more worrying than the coronavirus pandemic. We don't know how to handle it," she added.

The Chief Minister also noted that the accurate scale of destruction is yet to be known and about 2.4 million people were displaced and are currently in shelters, where face masks are compulsory due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Indian Prime Minister, Narenda Modi in a tweet said, "Have been seeing visuals from West Bengal on the devastation caused by Cyclone Amphan. In this challenging hour, the entire nation stands in solidarity with West Bengal."

Speaking, a Bangladesh forest official, Belayet Hossain said, "The tidal surge submerged some part of the forest." 'We have seen trees uprooted, the tin-roofs of the guard towers blown off," he added.