Fifteen persons were killed and 25,000 rendered homeless as a severe cyclonic storm hit the Mandapam-Pamban area in south Tamil Nadu. In all, 45 villages along the coast from Vedaranyam to Mandapam were submerged. Among the affected persons, 15,000 were in the Mandapam-Rameswaram area, and 10,000 in Vedaranyam region. The damage was not as heavy as expected, official sources said. The loss of human lives was also far less as people living in the coastal areas had been evacuated to safer places much in advance.
Lanka toll 300
The death toll in the cyclonic storm which hit Sri Lanka was put at 300. The Director of Social Services said that this was an estimate based on figures that had reached him and the exact figure would be known only after communications were restored. He described the damage to property and cultivated land as extensive. Thousands had been rendered homeless and hundreds reported missing. Planes were unable to land or take off because of rain and poor visibility. The Norwegian Red Cross has sent an urgent message to its branch in India to ferry two giant helicopters to Sri Lanka for rescue operations. Meanwhile, 180 prisoners taking advantage of the gale that struck Batticaloa escaped from the prison there, according to the police.
In a surprise raid on the house of Satbir Baba of Loco Colony in Aligarh the police recovered 1, 266 cartridges, a gun and a bomb. The total number of arrests made since the beginning of the disturbances is 480. Out of 1,350 licensed arms in the riot-affected areas, 450 have been surrendered.