Fani threat passes, no major loss reported
Kolkata: Kolkatans woke up with a sigh of relief after the cyclonic storm Fani passed through Nadia at a reasonable distance away from the city. Kolkata witnessed wind speed of 40-50 km per hour in the night with moderate to heavy rainfall and apart from stray incidents of collapse of a few mud houses and trees, there was no report of any loss of life or serious injury. Normal activities resumed in the city from Saturday morning with the weather gradually presenting a clearer picture from the afternoon.
Flight operations resumed at the Kolkata airport at 9.57 am on Saturday with Air India flight bound for Agartala leaving the city airport. A flight from Delhi also landed at 10.10 am. Flight services were suspended at the airport since Friday. Local train services in the Sealdah and Howrah sections that began in the morning were reported to be normal in all sections since the afternoon.
Mayor Firhad Hakim was in the control room of the Kolkata Municipal Corporation monitoring the situation in the city and also visiting a number of boroughs to have a clear idea of the proceedings. "We had made arrangements to act on an emergency basis had Fani hit the city. But thank god, nothing major has happened," Hakim said. The Member Mayor-in-Councils were also present in the borough offices to address any emergency. Bidhannagar Mayor Sabyasachi Dutta was also vigilant. He also paid a visit to the KMC headquarters and exchanged pleasantries with Hakim in the wee hours on Saturday when it was realised that Fani would not have much effect on the city and its adjoining areas. There were reports of a few stray incidents. Five persons were injured when a portion of a roof of a hutment collapsed on Friday night at Beniatola Lane in Sovabazar. All the five injured persons were released after treatment.
A portion of the boundary wall of a residential building located at Monohar Pukur Road, under Tollygunge police station, and a portion of a cornis of a three-storeyed commercial building at Rabindra Sarani under Bowbazar police station area collapsed on Saturday morning. There were no reports of any injury in both the cases.
With the weather conditions improving, South Eastern Railway announced operation of three special trains on Saturday night from Howrah — the destinations being Yesvantpur, Vasco Da Gama and MGR Chennai Central. SER has decided to run one trip superfast special train between Howrah and Sambalpur on May 5.