KENDRAPARA: Seaside villages of Kendrapara district were hit hard by cyclonic storm Bulbul, which brought along with it incessant rains and gusty winds on Saturday.
The cyclone caused heavy rainfall as it neared the coastal pockets of the district as a result of which water entered several villages near the sea.
Residents of Batighar, Kharinashi, Ramanagar, Badatubi, Sanatubi, Bagapatia, Kansar, Badasanda, Suniti, Ajagarapatia, Barahapur, Jamboo and Kandarapatia in Mahakalapada and Rajnagar blocks were the worst affected due to ingress of seawater.
ALSO READ: Coast Guard fully geared up for cyclonic storm 'Bulbul' headed for Bengal, Odisha coasts
Several thatched houses were razed in these villages and fishermen had to move their boats and equipment to safety.
Several fishing vessels were damaged due to high tides even as normal life was thrown out of gear in villages and towns across the district.
District Emergency Officer of Kendrapara Sambeet Satapathy said loudspeakers were used to warn people of the impending danger.
ALSO READ | Cyclone Bulbul: No death in Odisha, 40 pc crop damage expected
“The authorities have stockpiled dry food, rice, medical teams and ambulances on standby and shifted sick and pregnant women from the villages to hospitals,” he said. Heavy rains in the last couple of days forced people residing in low-lying areas to shift to safer destinations.
Public transport was in disarray as a few buses, trucks, vans and auto-rickshaws came out on the roads on the day causing inconvenience to people. Auto-rickshaws drivers charged more than the usual fare.
Boat operations in the riverside villages remained suspended and many parts of the district plunged into darkness as electricity was snapped due to heavy rains.
The rehabilitation colony at Bagapatia, built by the State Government two years back for sea-erosion hit villagers of Satabhaya gram panchayat in Rajnagar block district was water-logged. Roads too were damaged due to rains across the district.
Secretary of Odisha Traditional Fish Workers’ Union Prasan Behera said fishing vessels anchored along the coast were damaged as they collided with each other due to strong winds. He said the apathy of civic bodies in the affected areas has made matters worse for people across the district.