At least 10 lives are lost, thousands of homes destroyed
June 02, 2020
/ Syed Mahfuz
Amphan, the most powerful cyclone to hit Bangladesh this year with wind speeds of 160 kph (100 mph), made landfall on May 20 along the city’s coastal and southwestern districts. Thousands of houses were destroyed, poultry farms were devastated, thousands of trees uprooted, roads were left nearly impassable, and countless shelters were lost.
Hundreds of villages were inundated in Bhola, Patuakhali, Barguna, Khulna, Bagerhat, and Satkhira. Additionally, tidal surges battered areas in Barguna, Bhola, Barishal, and Laxmipur, reported by the Adventist Development and Relief Agency’s (ADRA) emergency response team in Bangladesh.
According to the official estimate, 10 people lost their lives. State Minister for Disaster Management and Relief Enamur Rahman said that of the 10 estimated deaths, two were from Patuakhali, three from Jessore, one from Bhola, one from Pirojpur, one from Satkhira, and two from Chuadanga.
For Bilkis Begum, reality of the cyclone hit her family as she lost her home for the third time.
“I lost my house for the first time in a cyclone,” recounted Begum. “I lost my house for the second time in a tornado. Now, I’ve lost my house due to Cyclone Amphan. I’m such a helpless woman that I’ve lost my house for the third time. There’s no one to look after me. No one can stay beside me and help me to live a normal life.”
“I’m very helpless,” says Begum. She also lost her father, who was the breadwinner of the home, and now struggles to make ends meet as she and her children find shelter at a nearby riverbank.
ADRA in Bangladesh had been working tirelessly to help evacuate and place people in shelters to ensure safety for the vulnerable community before the cyclone made landfall. ADRA was also circulating early warning messages to the community and called beneficiaries frequently to ensure their needs were being met.