Cyclone Bulbul: Seven dead, 2.73 lakh affected in Bengal

New Delhi: The Very Severe Cyclonic Storm 'Bulbul' (pronounced as Bul bul) over northwest and adjoining westcentral Bay of Bengal moved nearly northwards with a speed of 13 kmph during past 6 hours, and lay centred at 0530 hrs IST of Nov 9, 2019 over northwest Bay of Bengal, near Lat.20.0°N and Long. 87.7°E about 110 km east-southeast of Paradip (Odisha), 190 km south-southwest of Sagar Islands (West Bengal) and 340 km south-southwest of Khepupara (Bangladesh). (Photo: IANS/PIB)

Kolkata:  Severe Cyclone Bulbul has a taken a toll of seven lives in three West Bengal districts, and affected 2.73 lakh people, senior ministers said on Sunday.

Five deaths were reported from Basirhat sub-division in North 24 Parganas district, while South 24 Parganas and East Midnapore districts recorded one death each in the storm which crossed the Bengal coast close to Sundarban Dhanchi forest between 8.30 p.m. and 11.30 p.m. on Saturday.

Disaster Management Minister Javed Khan said 2.73 lakh people were affected, while 1.78 lakh persons were sheltered in 471 relief camps.

The state government was operating 373 group kitchens.

While Khan said 2,470 houses were damaged, according to state Food and Supplies Minister Jyotipriyo Mullick, as many as 3,100 houses collapsed in the worst-hit Basirhat sub-division alone.

Mullick, who toured the Bulbul-hit areas in Basirhat on Sunday, said the condition of Sandeshkhali was “very bad”.

“There has been massive damage to agricultural land. We have to meet the crisis on a war footing,” he said.

Briefing media persons in Kolkata, Khan said six teams of National Disaster Response Force and four State Disaster Response Force teams were carrying out rescue operations in the affected areas.