Heavy hailstorm accompanied by rains, continuing since Saturday has damaged the standing crops on thousands of hectares of land and resulted in an unspecified number of cattle deaths in the Vidarbha region.
The storm on Sunday afternoon lasted for over 90 minutes.
While two deaths were reported from Nagpur city, several people were injured by the “tomato-sized” hails. A large-scale damage was also caused to hundreds of houses, particularly in city slums and rural areas.
Confirming the large scale loss, former MLA Sunil Shinde said that orange crops in over 80 villages have suffered a huge damage. “The hailstorm was so virulent that tiles and tin-roofs of hundreds of houses came off. Many vehicles suffered damages too,” Shinde told The Indian Express.
In Nagpur, a handicraft exhibition on the sprawling Kasturchand Park suffered heavy damage. Over 50 trees were uprooted and scores of advertising banners and electric poles uprooted across the city.
Collector Abhishek Krishna said: “We have a preliminary report of crop damage on over 40,000 hectares of land in the district. Crops including orange, wheat and gram were particularly hit in Katol, Saoner, Narkhed and Kalmeshwar.”
He demanded a compensation of Rs 60,000 per hectare to orange farmers on par with what mango growers in Konkan.