Cyclone Nisarga: 5 lakh structures across 8 talukas damaged in Maharashtra’s Raigad district
At Mandad and Kude villages near Diveagar – the cyclone’s landfall site in Raigad – the cyclone blew off the roof of the dilapidated school buildings
More than five lakh structures have been damaged across eight of the 15 talukas in Raigad owing to Cyclone Nisarga.
A preliminary assessment has revealed that there have been damages to homes, garages, schools and medical care centres across Alibag, Murud, Tala, Shrivardhan, Margaon, Mhasala, Pen and Roha.
The rooftops of schools, located mostly in villages, have been blown away or partially dilapidated.
“Majority of the affected structures either had tin rooftops that blew away due to the intensity of the cyclone or had very weak foundation during construction. Our estimate of five lakh affected structures may further increase, as there is very little communication with officers from tehsils at the moment, but we will update the losses everyday, said Sagar Pathak, disaster management officer, Raigad.”
The Gharats, who live in Navedar Beli village near Murud, lost a floor of their creek-facing house.
Prabhakar Gharat, 65, said he and his family were eating lunch on Wednesday afternoon when they heard a loud thud and a gush wind burst into their home. On stepping out of their house and looking up, they saw almost three fourth of their upper floor missing. Gharat’s eye caught the sight of parts of the first floor ceiling, window pane, fan and the entire tin shed flying and landing 15 feet away into the mangrove trees at the edge of the creek. He said he and his wife had saved up for about 20 years to construct the two-room first-floor, which they rent out to tourists during the winter.
“We had no idea that the cyclone could cause this much damage. Nobody warned us,” said a teary-eyed Pradnya, Gharat’s wife. Gharat said an official from the collector’s office, who inspected the site, informed the couple that the cost to restore the upper floor is estimated to be ₹4 lakh. “We will also be incurring an annual loss of ₹1.5 lakh, which we used to make from renting out the room,” he said.
The family also suffered additional losses after an electric pole landed on their doorstep an hour after the top floor collapsed. “We are lucky that no one sustained injuries,” said Jagannath, Gharat’s son.
At Mandad and Kude villages near Diveagar – the cyclone’s landfall site in Raigad – around 400 students across two schools may have to wait longer to attend classes after the lockdown, as the cyclone blew off the roof of their dilapidated school buildings. Chairs, tables and books were scattered on the floor.
“We thought that the cyclone will not do much damage, as there are no trees located close to the school. However, after almost an hour, a strong wave battered the entire area,” said Atul Karanje, 16, a student of the high school near Mandad village.