However, Amphan gave a serious punch. Wind gusts of over 110 miles per hour uprooted trees and damaged homes, power lines and telephone cables in much of the Indian state of West Bengal. Flooding was also a problem, as storm surges and heavy rains flooded some areas and flooded a large airport.
At least 72 people have been killed in the state of West Bengal alone, and two other deaths have been reported in the nearby city of Odisha, according to the state government. Most of the deaths in India have been attributed to trees falling on people or to wind and water collapsing in homes.
Bangladesh reported 10 dead and said that one million people were left without electricity, as utility poles were knocked over in the south and southwest of the country.
The main threat had passed by Thursday; the cyclone had weakened into a “deep tropical depression”, which should end by the end of the day.
The state of West Bengal suffered the brunt of the storm. Although rural areas in the south of the state were hit hardest, Amphan left a trace of destruction in the state capital of Calcutta, one of India’s four largest cities.
Local television stations showed images of Kolkata Airport flooded with flood water, with some hangers collapsed.
Power and communication lines were still down Thursday afternoon, and several main roads were blocked by fallen trees in the city of nearly 15 million people.
“The cyclone was intense and did not last long. It was a gradual build-up when the force started knocking down walls, breaking windows and planting panels, “said Ammar Hamid, 30, a CBS News resident after watching Amphan tear himself apart. through his city. “There were heavy rain curtains, the constant whistling of the wind was so strong that even the shuttered windows made a frightening noise. “
Police and teams from India’s national disaster response force were already clearing the roads and repairing communication lines on Thursday, but the Chief Minister of the State of West Bengal, Mamata Banerjee said it would take “at least three days to assess the damage. off the coast of the state remained completely cut off by the floods and the fall of cables.
“It is a bigger disaster than COVID,” she said, although India is also struggling with the coronavirus crisis.
“Efforts are underway to ensure normalcy”, assured Prime Minister Narendra Modi in a tweet. “No stone will be left untouched to help those affected. “
The coming days will be a major test for the Indian and Bangladeshi authorities, as they must continue to fight the coronavirus pandemic, while clearing themselves of the deadly storm and bringing hundreds of thousands of people out of shelter and returning to devastated communities. .