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Cyclone Thane lashes TN, Puducherry

Last updated on: December 30, 2011 22:45 IST

Cyclone Thane lashes TN, Puducherry

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Severe cyclonic storm Thane on Friday claimed 33 lives as it hit the Tamil Nadu coast, leaving a trail of destruction and throwing life out of gear in Cuddalore district and the neighbouring Union Territory of Puducherry.

Cuddalore, nearly 170 km from Chennai on the east coast, bore the brunt of the cyclonic fury, accounting for 21 deaths, Puducherry seven and Chennai two in rain-related incidents such as wall collapse and electrocution, officials said.

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.

Cyclone Thane crossed the coast between Cuddalore and Puducherry, bringing in its wake torrential rains accompanied by a gale that uprooted hundreds of trees and electric poles, snapping power supply in several areas.

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Cyclone Thane lashes TN, Puducherry

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The tiny Puducherry was cut off from neighbouring districts in Tamil Nadu with the uprooted trees blocking road traffic.

After the landfall, Thane moved further westward and weakened rapidly into a deep depression and lay centered at about 100 km west of Cuddalore, the regional weather office said.

"The system is likely to move westwards and weaken further," it said, forecasting heavy rainfall for the next 12-24 hours in different parts of the state and Puducherry and advised fishermen against venturing into sea due to rough conditions.

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Cyclone Thane lashes TN, Puducherry

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Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa sanctioned a sum of Rs 150 crore towards immediate relief work and directed four of her cabinet colleagues to visit affected districts to oversee relief work.

In Chennai, a cargo ship ran aground off Marina Beach as sea conditions remained rough. Sheet of water could be seen on the service road along the beach which was lashed by tidal waves.

City Corporation officials evacuated more than 2,000 people living along the shores to safer places.

Eleven fishing hamlets in Karaikkal were affected following sea water intrusion and over 70 boats were damaged.

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Cyclone Thane lashes TN, Puducherry

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In Tamil Nadu, Nagapattinam district was battered by rains and heavy wind, causing damage to banana plantation. Electric posts were uprooted, resulting in power outage since Thursday night.

Sea water entered several coastal hamlets in Sirkazhi, Tarangambadi and Nagapattinam region, forcing residents of these areas to move to safer places.

The government had declared a holiday for educational institutions in 11 districts.

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Cyclone Thane lashes TN, Puducherry

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The cylone 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.

Puducherry Chief Minister N Rangasamy reviewed the situation with officials and announced a relief of Rs two lakh to the families of the deceased.

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