The Associated Chambers of Commerce of India on Tuesday said industries in Tamil Nadu suffered damage worth up to $1 billion (approximately Rs 6,751.45 crore), Business Standard reported. Assocham secretary-general DS Rawat said the cyclone, which struck the state on Monday, caused damage to the agricultural sector as well as affected the production output of the automobile industry.
“Loss of livestock, damage to private property, problems in ferrying passengers and transporting goods owing to cancellation of flights, trains, road blockades may significantly hit the region’s economy,” Rawat said, according to The Times of India. Factories were also shut down to avoid equipment and production lines being damaged.
The cyclone is also likely to affect the region’s tourism and medical tourism sector, according to the report. Power shutdowns also caused a loss of productivity in the state’s information technology sector. The IT industry and related services companies in the state collectively employ approximately four lakh people.
Assocham also called on its members and businessmen to help and provide aid to the thousands of people evacuated because of the cyclone, PTI reported. The body asked companies in the public and private sectors to set up rapid response units to collect donations and provide essential supplies such as food, water, beds and blankets to the people who were shifted to relief centres.
At least 18 people died in rain-related incidents in Tamil Nadu since Cyclone Vardah made landfall near Chennai on Monday. Chief Minister O Panneerselvam wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, seeking the release of Rs 1,000 crore from the National Disaster Response Fund for “relief, rehabilitation and reconstruction measures”. He also requested for a team to “study the extent of damages caused by the cyclonic storm”.