Titli leaves a trail of destruction
Titli leaves a trail of destruction

Srikakulam/ Vizianagaram: The severe cyclonic storm Titli, which had formed over Bay of Bengal claimed eight lives, five in Srikakulam and three in Vizianagaram, as it crossed the coast near Vajrapukothur, leaving a trail of destruction on Thursday.

Of the eight killed, six were fishermen who were on sea when the cyclone made the land fall. A house collapse and an uprooted tree caused the remaining two deaths. Of the 67 boats that sailed out to sea from Kakinada, 65 have returned safe and the officials are trying to ensure that the remaining two also would come back without any human loss of life. The system as it crossed the coast near Vajrapukothur in Srikakulam district, triggered heavy rainfall. 

Gales with wind speed reaching upto 120 kmph kept blowing across the district. The cyclone not only disrupted power supply in the district but brought torrential rains. In Ichapuram in Srikakulam district, at several places, the sea had surged forward upto 30 metres, sending a wave of panic across the people living on the sea coast.

In Vizianagaram district, a similar sea surge was reported in a village in Bhogapuram mandal. Mandals including Kurupam, Komarada, Jiyammavalasa, GL Puram in the district bore the brunt of the cyclone. Horticulture crops, including banana were razed and road connectivity has been cut to several mandals.

Vegetable crops have been damaged in most of the villages. Rainwater submerged chilli, brinjal, tomato crops in several mandals. Almost 15 mandals in Parvathipuram revenue division remained in darkness as power supply snapped on account of high velocity winds since Wednesday night. Earlier in the day Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu monitored the progress of Titili from Amaravati and the damage it was causing. He asked officials to take necessary precautions to save life and property in north Andhra districts.

The Chief Minister collecting information from officials of ISRO and Real Time Governance centre alerted the collectors of Srikakulam and Visakhapatnam districts. The officials in turn alerted the coast guard teams to rescue stranded fishermen in Gopalapuram. The Chief Minister appealed to people in cyclone-affected villages not to come out of their houses until the fury subsides. He asked officials to take up relief works immediately.

The Chief Minister appealed to TDP cadres and voluntary organisations to take part in the cyclone relief measures by extending cooperation to officials. He said people should come forward with humanitarian approach to restore normalcy.

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