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Last Friday saw the deadly Cyclone Fani hit India’s east coast and Bangladesh. The areas most affected by the (extremely severe) cyclone included Odisha and parts of West Bengal, Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu. In the state of Odisha, it has caused mass destruction, tearing apart infrastructure in the town of Puri and other smaller districts. The winds have barreled through the state at a speed greater than 200 km/hr.
The India Meteorological Department predicted the cyclone in advance, warning Odisha to prepare for the disaster. The warning allowed the state to carry out a large-scale evacuation of over 11 lakh people, and minimise destruction. The UN Special Representative for Disaster and Risk Reduction, Mami Mizutori even praised India in a tweet. He said, “India’s zero casualty approach to managing extreme weather events is a major contribution to the implementation of the Sendai Framework and the reduction of loss of life from such events. I look forward to hearing more about Cyclone Fani at the Global Platform 2019 from May 13 to 17.”
Despite these efforts, Odisha has been through complete havoc in the past few days. The death toll has been reported as 29 so far, and the initial estimates of the infrastructure damage are worth more than ₹ 1,200 crores, as per energy secretary Hemanta Sharma. While the central and state governments and other big organisations are contributing generously to the reconstruction and relief funds, you can play a part too. Here are some ways in which you can help rebuild Odisha.
1. Donate directly to the Chief Minister’s Relief Fund here.
2. Contribute to the Cyclone Relief on Amazon, where you can buy relief kits and directly send them to NGOs such as Goonj, OXFAM, Habitat for Humanity India, for instance. Go here.
3. Make a monterary contribution to the NGO Goonj, or donate essentials such as utensils, tarpaulin, blankets, clothes, food supplies, basic medicines, etc. Donate here.
4. Crowdfunding website, Milaap is raising funds for the Chief Minister’s Relief fund online. You can make a contribution here.
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