Dhaka, May 4 : At least six people were killed as cyclone Fani slammed into Bangladesh’s coastline after striking the Indian states of Odisha and West Bengal, officials said.
Bangladesh State Minister for Disaster Management Enamur Rahman said that 63 people were injured in the storm, bdnews24.com reported.
However, local TV channel NTV put the death toll at seven, adding that around 1,000 homes were damaged.
Officials said Fani damaged houses, uprooted trees, snapped power and communication lines and disrupted rail, road and air traffic. TV footage showed widespread flooding in coastal areas where hundreds of thousands of people were evacuated.
However, Shamsuddin Ahmed, Director at the Bangladesh Meteorological Department, said that Fani had weakened and was being gradually reduced to a depression. Officials said the cyclone did not prove to be as devastating as feared.
At least 1.6 million people who were taken to storm centres were told to return to their homes, reports said.
The severe cyclonic storm, one of the strongest to batter the Indian subcontinent in decades, weakened before entering Bangladesh on Saturday morning from West Bengal.
It first made landfall in Odisha on Friday morning. It crossed Tangail and Mymensingh region as a deep depression at noon, said the Met office.
The storm will become weaker after rain.
Fishing boats, trawlers and maritime vessels over the bay were advised to remain in shelter till further notice.
Under the influence of Fani, strong winds with rain started to lash many parts of coastal Bangladesh from Friday night, destroying homes, damaging crops and roads and uprooting trees.