Severe cyclonic storm Bulbul smashed into coastal areas this weekend, bringing in its wake torrential rains coupled with howling gales and ravaging the coastlines. At least 10 people were killed each in Bangladesh and West Bengal and two in Odisha after Bulbul uprooted hundreds of trees and snapped cables in the city and in the coastal districts of North and South 24 Parganas and East Midnapore.
In West Bengal, State Disaster Management Minister Javed Khan said that around 2,473 houses were destroyed and another 26,000 were partially damaged in the cyclone in the coastal districts along the Bay o Bengal, with the fishing towns of Bakkhali and Namkhana being among the worst-affected areas.
People were killed due to falling trees, collapsed houses and illness after cyclone Bulbul ripped through southern Bangladesh, authorities said on Monday. The health directorate's Health Emergency Operation Centre and Control Room, local administrations and police confirmed the toll on Sunday, bdnews24 reported.
The storm caused two deaths each in Khulna, Barguna and Gopalganj districts, and one each in Patuakhali, Bhola, Shariatpur, Pirojpur, Madaripur, Barishal and Bagerhat. In Barguna and Bhola, 28 fishermen went missing as a boat was still unaccounted for after it ventured into the sea despite storm warning and another boat sank.
The cyclone, which later became a deep depression on Sunday, ravaged about 5,000 homes in the country's south-western coastal districts, according to State Minister for Disaster Management and Relief Enamur Rahman. But the extent of the damage is not very high, he said, adding: "We have been able to move the highest number of people to safety."
As many as 5,787 safety shelters harboured over 2.1 million people during the cyclone, said Enamur. The evacuees returned to their homes on Sunday.
The storm made landfall near Sagar Islands in West Bengal's South 24 Parganas district with its status downgraded to "severe" from "very severe" at about 9 p.m. on Saturday as the gale wind speed dropped to about 115-125 km per hour. It took about three more hours for the entire storm system to move across the shorelines.