Cyclone Fani: Jagannath temple in Puri damaged, death toll now at 34

Kalpa Bata tree broken; CM announces relief

May 06, 2019 12:33 am | Updated December 03, 2021 08:53 am IST - Bhubaneshwar/Puri

A view of the destruction caused by Cyclone Fani after its landfall, in Puri, Friday, May 3, 2019.

A view of the destruction caused by Cyclone Fani after its landfall, in Puri, Friday, May 3, 2019.

Parts of the 12th century Shree Jagannath temple in Puri were damaged as Cyclone Fani ripped through the holy town on Friday, officials said on Sunday.

“The main structure remains unaffected. We will request the ASI to inspect the shrine,” P.K. Mohapatra, the chief administrator of Shree Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA), said.

The impact of the devastation was visible from the Lion’s Gate or as ‘Jay-Vijay Dwar’ — the main entrance of the temple. “The idol of Jay has been broken,” Mr. Mohapatra said, adding that the idol of Vijay was intact. The Kalpa Bata — a huge banyan tree revered as a wish fulfilment tree within the temple premises — has also broken.


Meanwhile, the Special Relief Commissioner’s Office has received confirmation of 34 deaths, while unofficial estimates put the figure at above 45. Around 1.07 crore people in 14 districts have been affected by the cyclone.

Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, who visited Puri twice since the cyclone struck on May 3, on Sunday visited Penthakata, the fishermen’s colony along the coast. Announcing a relief package, he said all families in Puri and in parts of Khurda that had been “extremely severely affected” in the storm will get 50 kg of rice, ₹2,000 in cash and polythene sheets, if covered under the Food Security Act (FSA).

He also announced an assistance of ₹95,100 for “fully-damaged” houses.

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