Garo Hills hit by major cyclonic storm

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TURA, April 17: In signs that continue to be ominous for the Garo Hills region, all districts of the region were hit by a major cyclonic storm that damaged houses and forced people to take shelter elsewhere on Wednesday morning. The districts of South West Garo Hills (SWGH) and West Garo Hills (WGH) bore the brunt of Wednesday’s storm.
The cyclonic storm follows major damage in North Garo Hills 3 days ago and the earlier double hailstorms in the village of Rongjeng which caused extensive damage to houses as well as farms.
The situation could get worse in the coming days with the prediction of cyclone ‘Mahasen’ set to visit the entire North East in the coming days.
The storm apparently began from the SWGH areas before moving to the other districts.
“Assessment for the areas is still in progress but we have details of over 3000 households in all three blocks of Rerapara, Zikzak and Betasing, being partially or fully damaged in the storm. There are 27 villages in Betasing, 14 in Rerapara and 12 in Zikzak affected. The damage was mainly to walls and roofs of houses,” stated the Deputy Commissioner of SWGH district, Ram Kumar.
No one was injured during the storm in SWGH.
The villages of Sulguri and Latrigre, Thakurambari and Garodoba along Assam border region suffered the most damage from the storm. Many schools in the village areas have also had their roof tops blown off by the strong winds.
The administration has further announced 3 days of relief to the affected villagers beginning Thursday.
Relief materials including food supplies and materials are currently being rushed to the affected villagers. No relief camps however have been set up as people have gone to the house of their neighbours to keep an eye on their own belongings that they could save from the storm.
The situation in WGH is also similar with all the blocks in the district, including the town of Tura witnessing houses being blown away.
“They were 3 people with minor injuries in the village of Adinggre who were given first aid and released. Around 140 villages and approximately around 700 households have been damaged in the storm. We are giving GR to those households that have been fully damaged after reports from BDOs,” confirmed DC Ram Singh.
In Tura areas around Danak Kongbe, Matchikol, Chitoktak, Tetengkol, Sunny Hills, Chandragre, Niram Ading saw homes damaged by the storm. Electricity in most areas has still not been restored with the town witnessing major traffic snarls.
In Rongram block, preliminary reports state that over a hundred homes have sustained damage, among which 19 have been fully damaged and another 8 severely.
The villages of Sasatgre, Bolbekgre, Makragre, Romba Adinggre, Waram Asim, Waram Songma, Tebronggre, Dipogre, Robagre, Lower Danakgre were among many under Rongram block that has faced destruction from the storm.
In NGH, the damage done was minimal with the DC stating that there may be 10-15 more houses partially damaged to the number already affected in the last storm.
East Garo Hills reported partial damage to houses in the Songsak and Samanda blocks.
“There are about 30 houses in Songsak and 90 in Samanda that were partially affected by the storm,” stated DC, Swapnil Tembe.
Sources in SGH added that there were no major reports of damage other than the Chokpot Block with most of it being partial in nature.