The toll in Cyclone Fani in Odisha rose to 41 on Wednesday. Rehabilitation work is being carried out on a “war footing”, Information and Public Relations Commissioner and Secretary Sanjay Singh told ANI. The cyclone hit the state on May 3.
“41 casualties have been reported in Odisha till now,” he said. “There has been massive damage to power infrastructure in the state, particularly in the districts of Puri, Khurda, Cuttack and Kendrapara. “On war footing, we are working for restoration of power infrastructure.”
“Electricity service in 80% areas of Bhubaneswar is likely to be restored by May 10,” Singh told IANS. “Entire city may get electricity by May 12.” He said in Puri, power restoration will begin by May 12 due to the massive damage the cyclone has caused.
The Reserve Bank of India has directed banks to extend their operations for two hours, closing at 6 pm instead of 4 pm in affected areas, the Odisha Sun Times reported. RBI Regional Director Mahesh Mall said that the central bank has decided to make mobile ATMs available in rural areas. ATMs which are operational have been stocked with cash, he added.
The National Crisis Management Committee met again on Wednesday to take stock of rescue and relief measures being carried out in the wake of Cyclone Fani. The government said the situation in eight out of nine districts in Odisha has improved.
The state and the Centre have together prepared a detailed plan identifying priority areas for restoration of power and water supply in Puri and Bhubaneswar, ANI reported. The Odisha government also said that the assistance of Rs 1,000 crore the Centre released for the state has been received.
On Monday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had praised Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik’s administration for the measures it took before Cyclone Fani hit the state last week. Modi addressed reporters after conducting an aerial review of the affected areas in Odisha with Patnaik. He also announced assistance of Rs 1,000 crore for the state.
On May 5, Patnaik had announced financial assistance and relief packages for families affected by Cyclone Fani. All the severely affected families covered under the National Food Security Act in Puri and Khurda administrative division will get 50 kg of rice, Rs 2,000 and polythene sheets.