By Neha Yadav
Published May 27, 2024

Hindustan Times
In Focus

Photo Credits: AFP

Severe Cyclone Remal batters West Bengal. See pics

Severe Cyclone Remal made landfall over coastal areas of West Bengal and Bangladesh on May 26 evening, lashing the region with strong winds.

According to the India Meteorological Department (IMD), winds of 110-120 kmph gusting up to 135 kmph battered the West Bengal coast.

The storm hit the land between Sagar Islands in Bengal's South 24 Parganas district, which was the hardest hit, and Khepupara in Bangladesh near Mongla.

Close to a million people had been evacuated and relocated to cyclone shelters in the last two days from the regions nearby coast, fearing widespread destruction and disruption.

The eye of the storm was located about 30km from the Bangladesh coastline. The experts expected the mangroves of the Sundarbans region to absorb the worst of the storm surges.

Gale-force winds were reported from Howrah, Hooghly, Sagar Island, Diamond Harbour, Jharkhali, Hingalganj, Sandeshkhali, and East Medinipur districts. 

The cyclone left a trail of destruction in three coastal districts of West Bengal, killing two people and displacing around 200,000 people.

Cyclone Remal wreaked havoc and caused widespread power outages due to fallen power poles and uprooted trees.

The Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose International (NSCBI) Airport in Kolkata was shut, resulting in the cancellation of 394 domestic and international flights.

The storm passed over by night but strong winds continued to lash the region. Prime Minister Narendra Modi convened a meeting in New Delhi to review the response and preparedness for Cyclone Remal.

Heavy rainfall will persist over West Bengal's coastal districts and eastern Gangetic districts near Bangladesh until May 27.