Chennai: A severe cyclone dumped heavy rain
and sent wind gusts up to 140 kmph after it hit the Tamil Nadu
coast on Friday killing at least 33 persons and left a trail of
destruction and threw life out of gear in Cuddalore district
and adjacent Union Territory of Puducherry.
The cyclonic storm `Thane` however left the southern
Andhra Pradesh coast unscathed after keeping everyone in the
state on toes for the last two days. The two southern states
were on high alert.
Cuddalore, about 170 km from here on the east coast, bore
the brunt of the cyclonic fury, accounting for 21 deaths,
Puducherry(seven), Villupuram and Tiruvallur(two each) and
Chennai(one)in rain-related incidents mainly wall collapse and
electrocution, officials said.
The storm crossed the coast between Cuddalore and
Puducherry bringing in its wake torrential rains accompanied
by gale that uprooted hundreds of trees and knocked electric
poles, snapping power supply in several areas.
Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa said the cyclone
claimed 26 lives in four districts in the state and released
Rs 150 crore for immediate relief works.
The tiny Puducherry was cut off from neighbouring
districts in Tamil Nadu with the uprooted trees blocking road
The cyclone also disrupted rail and air operations with
services cancelled or rescheduled. Flights to international
destinations including the middle-east and Malaysia from
Chennai were cancelled following the inclement weather.
Southern Railway partially cancelled and rescheduled
most of the trains between Chennai and southern districts.
In Chennai, a cargo ship ran aground off Marina Beach
with the sea conditions remaining rough. Sheet of water could
be seen on the service road along the beach which was lashed
by tidal waves.