Cyclone Thane
A man rides a motorbike on a damaged highway along the Bay of Bengal Sea on the outskirts of Chennai after Cyclone Thane hit the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu December 30, 2011. Rain and gale force winds lashed India's southeast coast on Friday, bringing down walls and power lines and killing at least six people as Cyclone Thane made landfall near the industrial city of Chennai.Reuters

At least 33 people were killed in Tamil Nadu and neighboring Union territory of Puducherry when cyclone Thane hit the southeastern coast of India Friday.

However, officials warned that the death toll could rise higher. The National Disaster Management Authority has sent eight teams to the coastal areas to search for bodies.

According to sources, a heavy rain and wind with speed up to 140 kmph hit the coasts of Tamil Nadu and Puducherry at around 7:00 a.m. local time Friday.

The cyclone left neighboring state Andhra Pradesh unharmed. There were no reports of casualties in the state. However, it damaged crops and roads.

Vehicular traffic from and to Puducherry was affected because trees uprooted in the cyclone blocked the roads.

Puducherry Chief Minister N Rangasamy announced a relief of Rs 2 lakh to the families of those who died.

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa announced Rs 2 lakh to the families of the deceased and Rs150 crore for immediate relief work. She instructed four ministers to supervise the relief measures in Tiruvallur, Villupuram, Nagapattinam, Kanchipuram and Cuddalore districts.