Cyclone Aila toll rises to 91 in Bangladesh

May 27th, 2009 - 6:23 am ICT by IANS  

Dhaka, May 27 (Xinhua) The toll in cyclone Aila has risen to 91 in Bangladesh, officials said.
The government said Tuesday 91 people have died and more than 800 others injured in the cyclone that hit the country’s coastal region Monday. Hundreds of people have been affected.

Rescue officials were continuing their search Tuesday for the missing people in the cyclone. The toll might go up, as many people were reportedly washed away by giant waves caused by the cyclone.

Media reports, however, said at least 130 people have died and over 100 others missing.

The cyclone also hit the Indian state of West Bengal where at least 82 people have died.

This was the biggest natural calamity in Bangladesh after cyclone Sidr hit the country in November 2007, leaving thousands of people dead or missing.

The southwestern Satkhira and Khulna districts and southeastern Noakhali district are the worst affected areas of cyclone Aila.

Food and Disaster Management Minister Abdur Razzak said 12.3 million taka (about $175,714) and 2,500 tonnes of rice were dispatched for the affected people.

The minister said the government has adequate relief goods in stock and would not seek any international help.

The army has distributed food, medicine and drinking water in the affected areas. Some 20 naval ships were pressed into rescue operations, the government said in a statement.

The tidal surge, triggered by the cyclone, also washed away crops, cattle and wildlife in the coastal region.

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