Updated: May 18, 2021 7:57:29 am
Mumbai and the coastal belt of Maharashtra reeled under the impact of Cyclone Tauktae on Monday, with 12 people dead and over 17 injured as it made its way to landfall in Gujarat. More than 15,000 people were evacuated to safer areas.
Rain and wind at over 100 km per hour raged through coastal areas, uprooting trees and electricity poles. Two barges belonging to the state-run ONGC, deployed for offshore drilling in Bombay High, around 70 km southwest of Mumbai, got de-anchored due to the rough sea conditions. In a massive operation, the Coast Guard and Navy rescued 60 men while 200 men were believed to be still on board.
Karnataka coastal areas, which also fell in the way of the cyclone, saw eight deaths, officials said on Monday.
The worst-hit district in Maharashtra was Raigad where, as per data compiled till the evening, four people had died and 8,383 people evacuated. The district administration said at least 5,244 houses were partially damaged and nine destroyed. According to Raigad District Collector Nidhi Chaudhari, Nita Naik and Sunanda Gharat, who had taken shelter near a temple, died at Uran, while Rama Katkari (80) in Pen and Ramesh Sable at Roha were crushed when trees fell.
Ratnagiri saw death of two from electrocution. Over 1,000 structures were partially damaged in the district, with 4,563 people evacuated.
In Palghar district, one person died at Waliv after a brick fell on him, while a rickshaw driver died at Pelhar coming under a tree, said Collector Manik Gursal. The administration moved 150 people to safety.
Sindhudurg district, adjoining Goa, was also affected, with one death, of a fisherman. The other three out on a boat with him are missing still. District Collector K Manjulekshmi said 2,100 houses were damaged and power supply to many places was cut off, including to Covid centres.
Thane District Collector Rajesh Narvekar reported three deaths. “In Navi Mumbai, an electric pole fell on a biker. At Ulhasnagar, a tree fell on two passengers in a rickshaw, killing one and injuring another, while at Mira Bhayander, one woman was killed as a tree fell on her.” Nearly 1,000 houses in Thane district suffered minor damage.
Several areas in Mumbai saw waterlogging, with over 400 trees uprooted. Road, rail and air traffic was disrupted, with power cuts lasting hours reported from Versova, Kurla, Thane and Kalyan. While there were no confirmed deaths in Mumbai, four people were reported missing after two boats drifted into the sea.
Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport authorities said 34 arrivals and 22 departures had to be cancelled, with flight operations suspended from 11 am to 10 pm.
The Karnataka State Disaster Management Authority put the number of villages affected at 121, across Dakshina Kannada, Udupi, Uttara Kannada (the worst-hit), Kodagu, Chikkamagaluru, Hassan and Belagavi districts. It said 387 houses had suffered damage, while crop losses were estimated in about 32.87 hectares.
The deaths in Karnataka were reported from drowning, due to a tug being adrift, house collapses, electrocution or other electrical mishaps.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke with Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray to take stock of the damage.
with PTI, Bengaluru
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