West Bengal has incurred a loss of Rs 23,811 crore in the devastations caused by cyclone ‘Bulbul’ that has affected around 35 lakh people in three districts, said a report the state government submitted to the visiting central team said on Saturday.
The report was handed over to the members of the central team during a meeting with state Chief Secretary Rajiva Sinha at the secretariat and a separate report would be sent to the Centre.
Members of the team called on the state government officials on Saturday, a day after they visited the cyclone-hit areas in North & South 24 Parganas and Purba Midnapore districts to assess the extent of damage caused by the storm.
“The state has incurred a total loss of Rs 23,811 crore in the three districts ravaged by cyclone Bulbul where over 35 lakhs of people have been directly affected. A total of 5,17,535 houses were damaged in the cyclone,” a senior official said, quoting from the report.
Altogether 14,89,924 hectare of agricultural land have been damaged, it said adding that the power department has incurred a loss of Rs 597 crore. As many as 4,35,000 tarpaulins and 6.2 lakh water pouches have been distributed by the state Public Health Engineering Department, the report said.
“Reports on losses incurred in North and South 24 Parganas and East Medinipur districts due to the storm and requirement in those areas were handed over to the central team. We would submit a separate report to the Centre,” the IAS officer said.
The central team have made ground visits, conducted aerial surveys of the affected areas and met officials of the three affected officials.
“We visited the areas affected by the cyclone to assess the extent of devastation. We have spoken to all the people concerned,” a member of the central team said. “We have taken note of what we have gathered from our meetings in these districts. We will now submit a report to the central government,” he said.
The team members included joint secretary of Ministry of Home Affairs KB Singh, assistant director of the department of expenditure under the Union finance ministry Sumit Agarwal, director of the department of agriculture Narendra Kumar and deputy director of Union power ministry OP Suman.
Cyclone ‘Bulbul’ had made landfall late on November 9 between Sagar Islands in West Bengal and Khepupara in Bangladesh. Altogether 14 people, including fishermen of a capsized trawler, died in the calamity. West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had earlier welcomed the visit of the team to the cyclone-hit areas.
After conducting an aerial survey of the cyclone-hit areas, she had said on Wednesday that the loss incurred by the state due to the catastrophe might go up to Rs 50,000 crore.
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