Cyclone Nisarga: Warning, heavy rain may continue in Maharashtra


New Delhi: The Maharashtra government on Thursday early morning withdrew the alert message, which was issued to seven coastal districts in the state on Monday because of cyclone Nisarga that hit Alibag in Raigad district the previous afternoon.

Officials, however, said heavy rains would continue in many parts of the state as an after-effect of the cyclone, which left four people dead and eight injured.

“The alert message was withdrawn around 6 am on Thursday. However, heavy rains are expected in many parts of the state,” said Kishorraje Nimbalkar, secretary, relief, and rehabilitation.

The state authorities have deployed 20 teams of National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) for relief and rescue operations in the affected areas along the Maharashtra coast.

“Relief and rescue measures are on. We’re assessing the damage and the report will be ready in another two-three days,” Nimbalkar said.

The cyclone has left behind a trail of destruction, especially in Raigad district, where power cables are snapped, trees and electric poles uprooted, thatched, kutcha and pucca houses destroyed or partially damaged and roads blocked.

A preliminary assessment by the state authorities has revealed that 1,865 kutcha houses are fully damaged, 5,577 partially damaged, 108 pucca houses fully damaged and another 560 partially damaged. Besides, 1,375 hutments are damaged in the seven coastal districts, where the alert was sounded.

Sachidanand Gawde, NDRF, Pune, said that relief and rescue operations are on.

“Two additional teams have been shifted to Raigad district, where cyclone Nisarga made landfall, from Mumbai and Thane. These teams are helping the district authorities in the restoration of essential services such as facilitating the movement of vehicular traffic that was disrupted due to road blockades and also the power supply. The teams will be stationed in the district until normalcy is restored,” Gawde said.

Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray has directed the officials to assess the losses while focusing on relief and rescue measures. “Cyclone Nisarga hit coastal Maharashtra while the state is battling the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) epidemic. The people of the state stood united to successfully face the challenge. I’m sure a similar effort will help tide over the Covid-19 crisis as well,” he said.

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