Days after Hurricane Dorian battered the Bahamas leaving behind a trail of destruction, India on Sunday pledged a relief package of $1 million to the island nation. The Ministry of External Affairs announced that the disaster relief package will be immediately made available for Bahamas.
“We are saddened by the large scale destruction caused in The Bahamas by Hurricane #Dorian. In solidarity with the friendly people of The #Bahamas in this difficult moment, the Government of India is extending an immediate disaster relief of $ 1 million,” MEA Spokesperson Raveesh Kumar tweeted.
Dorian, the most powerful hurricane on record to hit the Bahamas, swept through the Abaco Islands and Grand Bahama Island earlier this week, levelling entire neighbourhoods and knocking out key infrastructure, including airport landing strips and a hospital. The medical chief of staff of Bahamas’ only functioning public hospital said the death toll would be “staggering,” and two refrigerated, 40-foot trucks would be needed to hold the bodies that were expected to be found. “We’ve ordered lots of body bags,” Dr Caroline Burnett-Garraway said in an interview at Princess Margaret Hospital in Nassau, Reuters reported.
The US Coast Guard, working with the National Emergency Management Agency in the Bahamas, has rescued 295 people since Dorian began, the US embassy in Nassau tweeted. Relief groups are focusing on getting doctors, nurses and medical supplies into the hardest-hit areas and helping survivors get food and safe drinking water.
The United Nations estimated 70,000 people were in immediate need of food, water and shelter on the islands.
Meanwhile, the storm made landfall in Canada on Saturday night with winds gusting up to 155 kmph. Officials also said it had already dropped more than 100 millimetres (four inches) of rain on Nova Scotia, which could double by Sunday morning. Storm surges were causing widespread flooding. And more than 450,000 households were without electricity after winds knocked down power lines.