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Bangladesh - 2 weeks ago

Disaster strikes 19 districts

Hit of storm Remal, kills 17

Industry Desk: Remal has stopped with a long-term whirlwind on the coast. But even after the storm left, the scars were left behind. Distraught people who have lost their homes and livelihoods. Can’t figure out how to stand up again. Remal caused more damage than its tornadoes caused by the storm’s heavy rains. All in all, the new moon is now in the eyes of half a million people of the coast.
Remal has made the people of at least 19 districts of the country cry. It took 16 lives. Thousands of houses and trees have been destroyed. Rural roads and embankments are broken. Village after village is floating under water. Millions of people are stuck in water. Fish cages, field crops have sunk. Even the Sundarbans, the ‘danger shield’, did not escape the blow. No electricity; No mobile phone network. There is no food in the house. Women, children and the elderly are most at risk. People survived on dry food in the shelter for two days. All in all, a humanitarian disaster has descended on the coast. Disaster experts have urged to increase public and private humanitarian assistance quickly to bring such endangered people back to normal life. However, Awami League general secretary Obaidul Quader said that Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina will soon visit the areas affected by Cyclone Remal.
Meanwhile, the entire country, including the capital, came to a standstill yesterday due to rain and strong winds throughout the day. Chittagong is drowned in 235 mm of rain. 151 mm of rain has left Dhaka city reeling. But slowly the city life is starting to become normal. The airport has been opened, the seaport has also been opened. According to the Meteorological Department, the rains that are going on across the country under the influence of Remal may continue for another 24 hours. The temperature is likely to increase slowly from tomorrow Wednesday.
Damage done forRemal
Houses and crops were damaged in the cyclone that hit last Sunday. National and international disaster agencies and experts fear long-term damage to houses and other infrastructure due to continuous heavy rains in coastal areas.
State Minister for Disaster Management and Relief Mohibbur Rahman yesterday highlighted the initial damage of the cyclone and said that so far 10 people have died in Khulna, Satkhira, Barisal, Patuakhali, Bhola and Chittagong. More than 35,000 houses were completely destroyed in the coastal districts. Apart from this, 1 lakh 14 thousand 992 houses have been partially destroyed. 37 lakh 58 thousand 96 people have been affected by the cyclone in 107 upazilas of 19 districts. The districts are Satkhira, Khulna, Bagerhat, Jhalkathi, Barisal, Patuakhali, Pirojpur, Barguna, Bhola, Feni, Cox’s Bazar, Chittagong, Noakhali, Laxmipur, Chandpur, Narail, Gopalganj, Shariatpur and Jessore. The state minister said that Tk 6 crore 85 lakh has been given for the assistance of the victims. Out of this, cash assistance of Tk 3 crore 85 lakh, 5 thousand 500 tons of rice, 5 thousand packets of dry food, Tk 1 crore 50 lakh for buying baby food, Tk 1 crore 50 lakh for buying cow food have been given in 15 districts.
The information sent by ourcorrespondents say that 16 people died in 9 districts during the cyclone. In Patuakhali, one person was swept away by the tide and two others were killed by falling trees. In Satkhira too, one person has died in the flash flood. Two people died in Barisal when the wall of the building collapsed, one was crushed by a tree. Three people lost their lives when the house and trees were crushed by the storm in Bhola. A tree fell on a house in Khulna and one person died. And a pedestrian died when the wall of the building under construction collapsed in Chittagong. A person died after falling into a canal in Chittagong’s Boalkhali upazila amid heavy rain and tide due to the cyclone. A child named Pushp Akhtar (7) died after being trapped in a tin shed house destroyed by strong winds in Lakshmipur’sRamganj. An old man died after falling under a tin shed in Kushtia’s Mirpur. A garment worker named Liza died after being electrocuted by water accumulated on the road in Jatrabari, Dhaka. Six people died in India’s West Bengal due to Remal.
According to the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) preliminary, 8.4 million people in 10 districts of the country were affected by the cyclone. Among them are more than 7 lakh children and about 4.3 lakh women. According to the Department of Agricultural Extension, the cyclone caused about 7 percent crop damage in coastal areas of the country. The fish enclosure was also damaged. However, the full calculation of the damage is not yet done.
2 crore 70 lakh consumers of the country have been cut off due to the breakdown of distribution lines in the Cyclone Remal. Telecom sector regulator BTRC says that 22,000 mobile sites (towers) in 64 districts are down due to lack of electricity, which is more than 48 percent of the total sites.
Professor Zillur Rahman, chairman of Dhaka University’s Disaster Science and Climate Resilience Department, said that there will not be much visible account of damage caused by the storm. Like collapsed bridges, uprooted trees or collapsed houses. Because, the main damage caused by this storm is the continuous heavy rain in most areas of the country. Due to this rain, the crops have been damaged the most.
Sharif Jamil, member secretary of AMR (Dhara) said that it is necessary to repair the damaged houses at the moment. Food should reach those whose homes have lost food. Fresh water should be provided. It may take a long time for these helpless people to return to normal life. So, the rehabilitation program should be short term and long term. Small borrowers living in cyclone areas will have trouble repaying their loan installments. Therefore, taking loan installments should be stopped for the time being. The educational institutions which have been damaged by the cyclone should be repaired as soon as possible. Since the livelihood of the people in this region is largely dependent on the dam, it is necessary for the dam to be sustainable.
Mizanur Rahman, director general of the Directorate of Disaster Management, said, “We have made a preliminary estimate of the damage caused by the cyclone and have sent the required amount of relief aid. However, relief and rehabilitation assistance will be provided if a more detailed damage assessment is received from the local level.
‘Shield of danger’ Sundarbans is also wounded this time
The Sundarbans weathered many strong storms. The lush forest that stands as a ‘shield’ to protect lives has been wounded by a Remal. Most of the forest areas are flooded due to high tide. Most of the fresh water ponds have been washed away. Apart from this, the timber infrastructure of the forest has been damaged. Many wildlife is feared to have been swept away. Conservator of Forests (CF) Sundarbans Mihir Kumar Do say yesterday that two dead deer were recovered from Katka and Dublarchar in Sharankhola range of Bagerhat in East Sundarbans division.
Howladar Azad Kabir, Officer-in-Charge of Sundarbans Karamjal Wildlife and Breeding Centre, said that since all areas of the forest have been submerged, wildlife is expected to suffer a lot. The jetties of the forest department office in Dublarchar and Cuttack along the sea coast were swept away by the current. At various places, window panes of the forest staff’s living quarters, fresh water ponds were damaged, fresh water tanks, solar panels were uprooted. Due to strong currents and waves, the ponds in Katka area of the forest have disappeared into the Bay of Bengal.
Divisional Forest Officer (DFO) of Sundarban-East Forest Division Kazi Mohammad Nurul Karim said, Sundarban works like a wall to protect the people of the south-western coast of the country and adjacent areas from natural calamities. But this time due to the storm Sundarbans has suffered a lot.
Coastal residents never seen such a long storm
The lives of coastal people are tied together with storms and tides. However, this cyclone is an exception for many. Shrimp farmer Sheikh Noor Islam of BaintalaChakshri village of Bagerhat’s Rampal said, “I have never seen so much water before.” Storms happen occasionally. But this time it seems that there has been a storm for such a long time. The river is low; But the water did not decrease.
The horror of Remal is still burning Shahidul Islam in Sultanpur Union of Bagerhat Sadar. Not a single house in his union is on dry ground. Everything is submerged in water. The house of seventy-year-old Anisur Rahman, a resident of Nishanbaria Union in Barguna Sadar, has been submerged under water for two days. Anisur, who is in the shelter with his three children and his wife, said, “Mogo kapalpuiragache. No house, no paddy. Death is better than this.
Shah Alam, a resident of Mongla, said, ‘I have not seen such a long cyclone in several decades. Storms usually last for a few hours. But this storm is going on from Sunday afternoon to Monday night.
Howladar Azad Kabir, officer-in-charge of Karamjal Wildlife and Breeding Center of Sundarbans said, “The water pressure was higher than the wind during the cyclone this time. In fact, the water is much higher than Cedar-Isla. I have never seen so much water in my long career in Sundarbans. At least 5 to 7 feet of water is higher than the normal tide in Karamjal.
Lament on coast
Adequate preparations have been made as the distress signal was announced about 10 hours ago. Locals worked all night to protect the dam. At night, millions of people went to various shelters. The wind speed was slightly lower when the cyclone struck. All in all, the damage was expected to be somewhat less by the people of the coast. But the cyclone raged along the coast for a long time and messed everything up.
The embankments in Dakop, Koira and Paikgacha areas of Khulna have broken due to the flood caused by Remal. Numerous villages have been submerged in tidal water due to broken dams. After the cyclone, wind speed increased from Monday afternoon. As a result, the broken dam could not be repaired. According to the information of the control room of the district administration, 76 thousand 904 houses in Khulna were destroyed in the cyclone. 52 wards of different unions have been directly affected. Numerous trees have been uprooted in Khulna metropolis along with various upazilas. About 4 lakh 52 thousand 200 people were affected by the storm.
The Kuakata beach of Patuakhali has been damaged by the cyclone. The 18 km long beach is submerged by tidal waves from the Bay of Bengal. Kuakata Municipal Mayor Md. Anwar Howladar said that Kuakata Beach is under 6-7 feet of water so far. It can be said that the beach area has merged with the sea.
Talking to the local residents, it is known that Kuakata Beach-Lagoa National Park, Tourist Park, Lembu Char, Shuntkipalli area have been damaged due to tidal pressure. The tourism police box located on the road leading down to the beach, along with several other establishments including tea shops, are at risk. The main road leading down to the beach has been eroded by at least 20 feet of tidal pressure. Kuakata National Park, tourist park-adjacent area, hundreds of bushes, coconut trees have been uprooted. The trees lay like corpses in the tidal waters of the beach.
In different parts of Bagerhat, the dam broke and flooded the lower areas. More than 20,000 fish cages were washed away in the district. Meanwhile, hundreds of thousands of families have become waterlogged in the riverside and lower areas of Sadar, Sharankhola, Morelganj, Mongla and Rampal upazilas of the district. The families are suffering due to rising water in their houses. More than four hundred families of Radhaballav, Gobardia and Bishnupur villages of Karapara Union of Bagerhat Sadar Upazila have become waterlogged.
In Subarnachar and Hatia of Noakhali, houses, plants and crops were severely damaged. Out of this, about 52,000 families have been affected by Hatia alone, according to upazila administration.
Embankment breached in Patuakhali due to Cyclone Remal. Low-lying areas are inundated by tidal surges. The district town has become without electricity. Many people are stuck in water.
In Kalapara of Patuakhali, trees were uprooted in many places due to the rampage of Remal. Various areas have been flooded by the tidal water of rivers and embankments. Hundreds of ponds and fish enclosures were submerged.
Amir Hossain, a businessman of Jhalkathi city, said, “Water has risen in my house and shop. All businesses are closed. Now there is no food in the house either. Where will I go with my family?’
Arifuzzaman, Deputy Commissioner of Bhola, said that it is not possible to go from Bhola to the island areas including Charfasan due to bad weather. After trees fell in the storm, road communication in various areas was cut off, work is underway to normalize them.

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