KOLKATA: West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee, after conducting an aerial survey of the areas ravaged by cyclone Bulbul in North 24-Parganas district on Wednesday, said the loss due to the calamity might go up to Rs 50,000 crore which includes damage of 15 hectares of agricultural land. She also announced assurances to re-build damaged houses under the state government’s housing scheme for the poor.
Mamata also directed the education department to provide books to school children appearing for board examinations in the cyclone-hit area.
"I have seen the damage today. The cyclone has led to massive destruction. People sitting in Kolkata and other parts of the state will not be able to realise the extent of the devastation. If I am not wrong, I this there has been a loss of Rs 50,000 crore. A total of 15 lakh hectares of agricultural land has been damaged. The entire paddy cultivation has been ruined. I assure the farmers of all helps from the state government,’’ she said while addressing an assembly of local people at Basirhat.
Mamata also said the farmers under the state’s crop insurance policy would get 100% coverage. The chief minister assured saying the state government would soon announce a special package for the affected farmers.
Mamata handed over a cheque of Rs 2 lakh to the family members of five from the district who died in the storm.
At least nine persons died in the cyclone. Other than the victims from North 24-Parganas district, three from South 24-Parganas and one from East Midnapore districts. Seven fishermen are still missing since their boat capsized in Kakdwip, South 24-Parganas.
The chief minister conducted an aerial survey of the affected areas in South 24-Parganas on Monday. She directed the district magistrate of North 24-Parganas to activate all concerned wings of the district administration to speed up works to restore normalcy in the affected areas.