Officials, public relieved as Cyclone Michaung skips Nellore

Updated - December 05, 2023 08:49 pm IST

Published - December 05, 2023 08:04 pm IST

Nellore city flooded following two days of incessant rainfall due to Cyclone Michaung which made landfall in Bapatla on Tuesday afternoon.

Nellore city flooded following two days of incessant rainfall due to Cyclone Michaung which made landfall in Bapatla on Tuesday afternoon.

Agriculture minister Kakani Govardhan said that there were no casualties or loss of property in the district, however the paddy fields suffered minor damage

The general public and officials expressed relief as the Cyclone Michaung, which was speculated to make landfall between Nellore and Kavali, skipped the Nellore coast and made landfall at Bapatla on Tuesday afternoon. However, normal life was thrown out of gear in various parts of south coastal Andhra Pradesh as heavy rainfall lashed Nellore, Atmakur, Kavali and Ongole for two days.

The relentless downpour from Monday night to Tuesday morning, minimised into a drizzle by Tuesday morning and skies were clear by noon, as the cyclone moved northwards. This aided the relief teams in low-lying areas, said a senior official on flood surveillance.

The cyclone marked a record rainfall of 317.6 mm in Manubolu mandal, followed by Sydapuram at 283.2mm, Nellore urban at 254.6 mm, and Nellore rural at 214 mm.

During the inspection of irrigation tanks at Venkatachalam, Agriculture Minister Kakani Govardhan said that there were no casualties or loss of property. “The paddy fields, which are now at sowing stage, suffered minor losses. We will expedite the enumeration of crop losses and distribute compensation and seeds under the input subsidy to farmers at the earliest,” he said.

Mr. Govardhan said that those sheltered at rehabilitation centres along the Nellore coast would be provided with ₹2,500 compensation for a family and ₹1,000 for a single person. The affected families would also be supplied with 25 kg of rice, one kg of dal, and other vegetables.

The Minister, along with Special Officer (Floods) Hari Kiran and Collector Hari Narayanan, inspected the flood-affected areas at Venkatachalam, Kasumuru, Golagamudi, and Anikepalle.

Trees uprooted, roads deserted, electric poles damaged

Senior officials of the Andhra Pradesh Southern Power Distribution Company Limited (APSPDCL) arrived at Nellore as the cyclone uprooted trees and electrical poles. An official said that a detailed report would be prepared regarding the uprooted power poles, damaged cables and other equipment.

Most of the roads, including those leading to the busy VRC centre and Gandhi Bomma centre in Nellore, were deserted as fear-struck people remained indoors. Most part of the city, including Magunta layout, KVR petrol bunk centre, Atmakur bus stand centre, Muthukur gate, Ramalingam Nagar were covered in a sheet of water.

The underpass at five places in the city were submerged as water from overflowing drains mixed with the rainwater, inconveniencing commuters.

Meanwhile, vehicular movement from Nellore to Tirupati and Vijayawada came to a grinding halt at various points on the Grand Trunk road due to the downpour and waterlogging on the national highway. Officials said that the Indukuripeta mandal bore the brunt of the cyclone as its rural roads and prawn farming units were severely damaged.

The wind speed crossed over 80 kmph along the coastal villages in the district, which resulted in colder temperatures. The Mypadu and Kodur beaches, which usually attract several tourists, remained deserted.

The police and revenue officials blocked the roads at various subways in Nellore towards the railway station and Atmakuru bus stand. The localities along the Penna River, including Harinatha Puram, Kapatipalem, and the surroundings of Ranganatha Swamy temples, faced several power cuts.

The Somasila reservoir in the district received good inflows and its storage touched 30 tmcft by Monday night. The irrigation officials released 10,915 cusecs of water downstream to prevent breaches to the bunds.

Sanitary staff in Nellore and Ongole struggled to clear the clogged drains. Municipal Administrator A. Suresh oversaw relief operations undertaken by the officials in Prakasam district along with Special Officer P.S. Pradyumna, Prakasam District Collector A.S. Dinesh Kumar and Superintendent of Police Malika Garg.

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