Extending assistance for immediate humanitarian relief to people affected by Cyclone Amphan, the European Union has pledged initial funding of EURO 5 lakh for India and EURO 1.1 million for Bangladesh.
In a statement, EU's Commissioner for Crisis Management, Janez Lenarčič, said: "The European Union will address immediate needs of populations affected by the cyclone, as well as protect humanitarian aid and health workers from their exposure to the epidemic. The EU is determined to start helping people in need with no further delay and provides an initial funding of €500.000 for India and €1.100.000 to support the immediate response in Bangladesh."
Dozens of people have lost their lives as #CycloneAmphan has come ashore southwest of Kolkata in eastern #India and is making its way further north-east towards #Bangladesh. The 🇪🇺 provides initial funding to support the immediate response. My statement👇https://t.co/xxAZrSubyx— Janez Lenarčič (@JanezLenarcic) May 21, 2020
Lenarčič also expressed his solidarity with those affected by the cyclone and grief for those killed. "My thoughts are with the brave people who have been affected by tropical cyclone Amphan and especially those who have lost their loved ones. I am saddened to learn about fatalities in both India and Bangladesh, and the extent of destruction caused by strong winds, flooding and landslides, also damaging houses, infrastructure and livelihoods."
Cyclone Amphan, which reported winds up to 190 kmph made landfall at the Digha coast of West Bengal on Wednesday and hit Kolkata a few hours later. There were widespread power cuts in large parts of Kolkata, North 24 Paraganas and South Paraganas. Mobile, internet services, and electricity were also down in parts as the cyclone had damaged several communication towers and the electrical grid. At least 80 people have been killed in the calamity, while thousands are displaced.
On the other hand, nearly 45 lakh people in Odisha have been affected by the extremely severe cyclonic storm, which fiercely rolled past the state's coast and made landfall on Wednesday, uprooting trees and flattening fragile dwellings. The power infrastructure and the farm sector have also suffered considerable damage, while the telecommunication infrastructure is largely intact with minimal impact.