Rains, thunderstorm damage over 2,000 houses in Manipur

Imphal, April 20 (IANS) Over 2,000 houses and other facilities with roofs of tin and corrugated sheets were damaged in the thunderstorms and torrential rains that hit many parts of Manipur on Tuesday, residents said.

There are also reports of minor damages to structures in some states in the northeastern region.

“More than 450 houses were destroyed in my Oinam constituency,” said I. Ibohanbi, a Manipur legislator.

Reports of such destructions were coming in from other districts as well.

In the absence of any government assistance in providing relief measures at evacuation centres, the homeless are taking shelter in school buildings.

Some families told IANS that no government official has visited them as yet. “It is a problem to arrange for even a meal.”

Vehicular traffic was held up for several hours along the state and national highways as the roadside trees have fallen. Residents removed the fallen trees and snapped branches, and cleared the roads.

Reports received from Manipur’s Jiribam town bordering Assam said a large number of birds were killed and wounded in the hailstorm that battered several places in the district on Monday and Tuesday.

Some of the hailstones were as big as an orange. Some houses were also damaged.

A police station and an inspection bungalow in Tamenglong district were also damaged in the thunderstorm.

A few dozen people sustained cuts and injuries as the rooftops of tin and corrugated sheets were blown away. The injured were treated for their injuries and later discharged from hospitals.

District administration sources said detailed reports on the damage to the houses and standing crops will be sent to the state government by Wednesday evening.

Manipur’s Chief Secretary Oinam Nabakishore has announced all necessary assistance would be provided to the victims once official reports are received from the district administrations.

Meanwhile, there was a slight improvement in the weather in some northeastern states on Wednesday.

Thunderstorms and heavy rains have, however, been forecast till Wednesday.

Meanwhile, the condition of the Imphal-Myanmar trans-Asian highway has worsened as a result of the downpours over the past few days, and heavy vehicles are facing difficulties.

The highway was badly damaged during the January 4 earthquake and is yet to be fully repaired.

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