Cyclone Sitrang had landfall in Bangladesh on Monday night. Officials say that as reports of more deaths are pouring in from different parts of the country, the death is likely to go up.
At least 24 people were killed in Bangladesh as cyclone Sitrang slammed into densely-populated, low-lying areas of the south Asian country Monday night, news agency AP reported.
The death toll might go up as more casualties are being reported from other districts of the country.
The cyclone – the equivalent of hurricanes in the Atlantic or typhoons in the west Pacific – made landfall in southern Bangladesh late on Monday but authorities managed to get about a million people to safety before its landfall, reports said.
Deaths were reported in the districts of Barguna, Narail, Sirajganj, and the island district of Bhol.
The cyclone barrelled in from the Bay of Bengal early on Monday with winds gusting up to 88km/h (55mph) and a storm surge of about three metres (10ft) that flooded low-lying coastal areas. The Bangladesh Meteorological department had warned that tides up to five meters could hit the coastal areas.
Power and telephone links have been largely cut and coastal areas plunged into darkness, wire agency AFP quoted Bangladesh officials as saying.
Soon after it crossed Bangladesh, Sitrang weakened into a deep depression, and as of Tuesday morning, it further weakened into a low pressure area. The system, which is now moving towards the northeastern regions of India, is likely to cause widespread moderate to heavy rainfall over Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Meghalaya, Mizoram and Tripura regions of the country.
The India Meteorological Department has warned of squally winds with speeds reaching 40 to 50 kmph gusting to 60 kmph along and off the coast of West Bengal which will decrease gradually to 30 to 40 kmph gusting to 50 kmph by forenoon.