Severe storm struck parts of eastern India

A severe storm struck parts of eastern India, lasted between 40 minutes and an hour. As of 22:30 local time on April 14, the official death toll stood at 116.

72 deaths were reported in the Indian state of Bihar, 38 in West Bengal, and 4 in Assam. Two deaths were reported in Bangladesh. Most of the deaths were women and children crushed when their huts were destroyed.

An estimated 50,000+ homes were destroyed by the disaster, leaving hundreds of thousands of people homeless. Both mud and pucca homes were damaged by the storm.

Although not a tropical cyclone, the storm was reminiscent of Cyclone Aila which killed 155 people in the same area, during May 2009. The severity of the storm was unexpected, although thunderstorms had been predicted. It spawned at least one tornado, and occurred during a heat wave in which temperatures of greater than 40C (104F) were reported.

Civil defence Minister Srikumar Mukherjee reported that the storm hit the state snapped telephone and electric wires in the area. Mukherjee added that hundreds of people suffered injuries in the district, which is nearly 315 miles (500 kilometers) northeast of Kolkata, the capital of West Bengal.

Hematabad, Raiganj and Kiran Dighi were the worst affected; police and rescue officials have recovered the bodies of 31 people from the areas, he told to the Associated Press. 50,000 mud huts were destroyed by the storm.

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