Cyclone Amphan wipes Tk 11bn off Bangladesh, government says

  • Senior Correspondent, bdnews24.com
    Published: 2020-05-21 20:08:54 BdST

Cyclone Amphan has caused Tk 11 billion in damage to housing, infrastructure, fisheries and livestock, water resources and agriculture in Bangladesh, according to initial government estimates.

Md Enamur Rahman, state minister for disaster management and relief, revealed the figure in a virtual press conference on Thursday.

At least 26 districts across the country have been affected by the cyclone, the minister said.

The ministry has put the death toll from Cyclone Amphan at 10. A bdnews24.com tally of data from local administrations however reveals 12 deaths caused by the monster storm.

The cyclone struck the Indian state of West Bengal and Odisha on Wednesday evening and moved into Bangladesh later in the night, devastating villages, tearing down power lines, collapsing dams and leaving large tracts of land under water.

The figures of damage include reports submitted by the ministries of fisheries and livestock, water resources, agriculture and local government, Enamur said.

It will take a week for the government to measure the full scale of the damage, he added.

Around 1,100 kilometres road at 26 districts, including Bagerhat, Khulna and Satkhira, have been damaged by the cyclone.

The storm also harmed more than 200 bridges and culverts, 233 government infrastructures and sources of safe drinking water.

The harvests of jute and mung dal, summer fruits mango and litchi have been affected in Barishal and Khulna divisions, the agriculture ministry said.

The storm destroyed mangoes worth Tk 1.5 billion in Satkhira, Rajshahi and Chapainawabganj. Harvests of paddy have not been affected that much in those areas, Enamur said.

“We have decided to instruct the deputy commissioners to buy mangoes damaged by the storm to distribute among the people as coronavirus aid. The mango farmers will benefit from the initiative and the fruits will also remain safe from contamination.”

The monster storm has damaged 150 kilometres of dams in coastal districts, the water resources ministry said.

“As many as 84 embankments have been breached and collapsed in Bangladesh. A budget worth of Tk 2.5 billion to 3 billion has been approved to repair the dams. Repairs will start on Friday,” Enamur said.

The storm also damaged 80,500 shrimp enclosures causing a total loss of Tk 3.25 billion in Satkhira, Bagerhat, Barguna and Patuakhali. It also caused damage to livestock worth of Tk 10.4 million, according to the minister.

Telecommunication services have been disrupted by the storm amid power outages, the Posts and Telecommunications Division said.

The authorities are working to gradually resume services in the affected areas, Enamur said.

The ministries of food and education have not suffered a big damage while the public works ministry reported slight damage done by the cyclone.

The ministry of disaster management and relief has allocated 500 bundles of corrugated tin sheets and Tk1.5 million for every district hit hard by the fierce storm.