At least five people, including two women, were killed as the very severe cyclone 'Bulbul' hit West Bengal’s southern coastal belt bordering Bangladesh and Odisha.
At least four people were killed in rain-related incidents in Kolkata and North 24 Parganas district of West Bengal and one perished in neighbouring Odisha’s Kendrapara district since Saturday, our New Delhi correspondent reports quoting officials.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke to West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee about the situation arising out of the cyclone and assured the state of all assistance to deal with the calamity.
An employee of a leading club in south Kolkata was killed when a branch of a tree fell on him, police said.
In Basirhat in North 24 Parganas, three persons died in separate incidents. According to a senior police officer of West Bengal, Suchitra Mandal, 70, died at Purba Makala village in the district when a tree fell on her.
At Gokhna village in the district, several trees were uprooted, one of which claimed the life of Reba Biswas, 47.
Manirul Gazi, 59, was the third casualty in the district when he was electrocuted after coming in contact with a lamp post, the officer added.
Torrential rain lashed Kolkata throughout Friday and Saturday, forcing people to remain indoors and leading to suspension of flight movements from the airport for 12 hours.
Gale wind with gusts up to 135 kmph prevailed over the coastal districts of South 24 Parganas and East Midnapore districts and its adjoining areas in North 24 Parganas district of West Bengal as the cyclone made landfall around midnight on Saturday.
State Disaster Management minister Javed Khan said all emergency services have been put in place to ensure uprooted trees are removed at the earliest.
According to the IMD, the very severe cyclonic storm had weakened into severe cyclonic storm before making landfall close to Sundarbans Dhanchi forest.
"Yesterday's very severe cyclonic storm 'Bulbul' over northwest Bay of Bengal (BoB) moved northeastwards, weakened into a severe cyclonic storm and crossed West Bengal coast close to Sundarbans Dhanchi forest during 8:30 to 11:30pm with a maximum sustained wind speed of 110-120 kmph gusting to 135 kmph," it said in an official release.
Mamata Banerjee said she would conduct an aerial survey of the cyclone affected areas around Namkhana and Bakkhali in South 24 Parganas district.
“I am also planning to visit the cyclone-affected areas of Basirhat of North 24-Parganas on 13 November, 2019," she said.
State power minister Sovandeb Chattopadhyay said measures were being taken to restore power supply in areas where electric cables have been torn apart due to the cyclone.