Cyclone ‘Amphan’ destroys 82,000 homesteads in Khulna

Khulna Correspondent: The extremely severe Cyclonic storm ‘Amphan’
totally and partially damaged 82,000 homesteads, bringing a storm surge that
washed away several embankments in low-lying coastal areas, said a district
Relief and Rehabilitation Management official here today.

At least 5 lakh people of 68 unions under nine upazilas of Khulna been
affected by cyclone ‘Amphan’, he said.

Thousands of shrimp ghers (enclosure) has been washed way, numerous thashed
house, trees, electricity and telephone poles, dykes and crop lands were
damaged and many villages were submerged by tidal surge of ‘Amphan’, he said.

Khulna District Administration, Mongla Port Authority, Bangladesh Navy,
Bangladesh Coast Guard (BCG) of Mongla West Zone, Fire Service and Civil
Defence are working to rehabilitate the affected people of the coastal areas.

As part of the immediate response for the first time in the district
history, more than 2.20 lakh people were successfully evacuated to 608
cyclone shelters in coastal districts before ‘Amphan’ hit the region, said
Deputy Commissioner of Khulna Md Helal Hossain.

While a thorough assessment of damage caused by the cyclone will be made,
there are reports of many trees being uprooted from different coastal areas
including Dakop, Koyra, Paikgacha and Batiaghata in the district, he said.

Around 3,560 volunteers of different organisations, including Red Crescent
and CPP, are working in different regions, he said, adding that 1,100 more
volunteers from non-government organizations (NGOs) are also in action while
116 medical teams with health workers are working at cyclone affected
upazilas.

District Relief and Rehabilitation Officer Md. Azizul Haque Joarder said
the storm has uprooted trees and electricity poles as in some places, trees
have fallen, causing traffic disruption.

“Raw-brick houses and power supply infrastructure have been damaged. Due to
the high tide in the river, several embankments in Koyra, Paikgachha and
Dakop have been breached and caused flood,” he added.

The storm ‘Amphan’, however, claimed no life so far and injured some people
in coastal areas.

However, about 2.5-lakh metric tonnes of rice, Taka 7-lakh in cash, 1,900
packets of dry food, were distributed in Koyra, Dakop, Paikgacha and
Batiaghata upazilas so far, he added.

“Fortunately, the harvesting of the Boro paddy has almost been completed
before cyclone. So the damage of boro paddy is comparatively low,” said
Deputy Director of Department of Agriculture Extension (DAE) in Khulna
Agriculturist Pankaj Kanti Majumdar.

The operation of Mongla port resumes today noon, said Md Makruzzaman,
secretary of Mongla Port Authority (MPA).

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