While cyclone Roanu battered coastal Andhra Pradesh, a severe thunderstorm wreaked havoc in the state capital of Hyderabad, killing three people and injuring dozens of others.
Strong winds accompanied by heavy rains for half-an-hour on Friday evening led to huge trees being uprooted blocking roads in commercial and residential areas.
Electricity poles, communication towers, hoardings, and billboards were also dislodged while high tension wires snapped due to the ferocious velocity of the gale.
Many areas remained under darkness till late in the night.
One man died when the winds caused a water tanker to fall from the roof a house onto to him, crushing him to death. The deceased’s brother was also injured in the accident.
In another instance, a wall collapsed onto a labourer who sought shelter near it from the rain. The third death occurred when a labourer fell from the third floor, perhaps caught in gust of wind.
Similar incidents caused more than a dozen injuries across the city.
The heavy rains also inundated roads, causing major traffic snarls. Motorists returning from offices were stuck in traffic jams for hours.
Eight cars were crushed under a massive pillar of a hoarding which fell due to the gale. No one was injured though.
Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation commissioner Janardhan Reddy said 105 emergency teams of the corporation and 29 of the Water Board were engaged in clearing roads. Nearly 40 cranes were deployed to clear fallen trees and other major debris.
The Hyderabad Meteorological Centre clarified that the thunderstorm had nothing to do with cyclone Roanu in the Bay of Bengal. Instead, the heavy rains were results of cumulonimbus clouds over the region.