KOLKATA: West Bengal on Friday didn’t see two political adversaries, but leaders working together. As Prime Minister Narendra Modi landed in Bengal to take stock of the trail of destruction left behind by severe cyclonic storm Amphan, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar came to receive him along with the senior state BJP leadership.
Modi and Banrejee then together conducted an aerial survey of the areas affected by Amphan, said to be the strongest super cyclone to have made a landfall in the Bay of Bengal area since 1999. They flew over the areas which have been submerged in water due to incessant rainfall.
Modi later announced a Rs 1,000 crore relief package for the cyclone-hit state, saying the nation stood with Bengal in this hour of crisis.
The Prime Minister also said that a Central government team will soon visit West Bengal and conduct a detailed survey of the losses caused by the cyclone.
Amphan made its landfall in West Bengal on Wednesday afternoon and caused severe damages in various parts of the state with a wind speed ranging from 155 to 185 kmph, accompanied by heavy rainfall. At least 80 people have lost their lives due to the severe cyclonic storm, as per sources.
On Thursday, Banerjee had said, “I would request Prime Minister Narendra Modi to come and visit the affected areas,” adding that she had never witnessed such a severe cyclone in her entire life.
Earlier, the Prime Minister had tweeted: “Have been seeing visuals from West Bengal on the devastation caused by Cyclone Amphan. In this challenging hour, the entire nation stands in solidarity with West Bengal. Praying for the well-being of the people of the state. Efforts are on to ensure normalcy.”
Modi will now take off for Odisha, which has also been badly hit by the cyclone.