Cyclone Bulbul kills 20 in India, Bangladesh

UNITED STATES (OBSERVATORY NEWS) — Twenty people have spent more than 2 million overnight in shelters as a result of cyclone Bulbul, which hit the coast of India and Bangladesh with strong winds and heavy rains, officials said Sunday.

On Saturday night, winds reached 120 kilometers per hour, forcing authorities to close ports and airports.

In West Bengal, 10 people died, according to the Press Trust, including two people who were killed by falling trees on their homes, while another died of twigs falling in Calcata.

The agency said two people were killed in the neighboring state of Odisha.

In Bangladesh, eight people died, including five from falling trees, while at least 20 people were injured.

Five people were still missing after a fishing boat sank in the Meghna river near the southern island of Bhola, provincial governor Masood Alam Siddiqui told AFP.

The cyclone destroyed nearly 4,000 houses, mostly mud or tin houses, according to the disaster management secretary Shah Kamal.

Bangladesh authorities have evacuated more than two million people in anticipation of the cyclone.

Bangladeshi troops were deployed in the villages to help evacuate the population. Some 55,000 volunteers were sent to visit and warn residents’ homes.

About 1,500 tourists were stranded on the island of St Martin off the southeast coast of Bangladesh after bad weather prevented boats and ships from sailing.

In India, some 120,000 evacuees have begun to return to their areas after the storm subsided, authorities said.

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