Cyclone Gaja leaves 13 dead, 81,000 affected in Tamil Nadu


New Delhi: The death toll has mounted to 13 as the cyclone ‘Gaja battered Tamil Nadu coast on early Friday. Over 81,000 were affected due to the severe cyclonic storm, officials said. The National Emergency Response Centre (NERC) said six districts of Tamil Nadu and two in Puducherry were hit by the cyclonic storm.

Home Minister Rajnath Singh called up Tamil Nadu Chief Minister K Palaniswami immediately after the landfall. Singh assured him of all help to tackle the situation. Singh asked the Home Secretary Rajiv Gauba to monitor the situation in Tamil Nadu and provide necessary assistance to the state administration.

Palaniswami said the state government is assessing the damage caused by ‘Gaja’ and added that relief measures are being taken up on a war-footing.

According to the NERC, 471 relief camps were set up in Tamil Nadu and 57 relief camps in Puducherry to provide shelter to the affected persons.

The severe cyclonic storm ‘Gaja’ crossed over littoral regions of Tamil Nadu between Nagapattinam and nearby Vedaranyam. It lashed the state with heavy rains accompanied by gusty winds with a velocity of 120km per hour. Hundreds of trees and electricity poles were uprooted in Nagapattinam and Karaikal districts.

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