Bangladesh still reeling one week after cyclone

Rezaul Islam wades through waist-high water, a sack of rice on his head salvaged from what remains of his home, a week after a cyclone savaged Bangladesh and eastern India.

The strongest storm to hit the area this century killed more than 100 people, flattening entire villages, uprooting trees and ruined fish ponds in the Indian state of West Bengal, and south-west Bangladesh.

"We are trying to salvage whatever we can," 17-year-old Islam told AFP, his house still half-submerged in water left by storm surges unleashed by Cyclone Amphan.

With homes destroyed or uninhabitable, more than 200,000 people in India and at least 100,000 in Bangladesh remain crammed into cyclone shelters -- often with little regard to coronavirus precautions. The most damage caused by Amphan was from the accompanying storm surge, which wrecked several hundred kilometres of embankments that are supposed to protect homes and farms in low-lying coastal areas. Locals worked through the night when the cyclone hit, desperately trying to shore up levees with sandbags. It was mostly to no avail. Tens of thousands of acres of farmland, fruit plantations and farms have been devastated by the saltwater.

In the Bangladeshi town of Koira, thousands of families have been trying for days to retrieve belongings from what remains of their homes in the now-desolate landscape. Many buildings had roofs ripped off by the 165-kilometre-per-hour winds.


Publication date:

Receive the daily newsletter in your email for free | Click here

Other news in this sector:

© 2020

Sign up for our daily Newsletter and stay up to date with all the latest news!

Subscribe I am already a subscriber