India - Hailstorm OCHA Situation Report No. 1

Ref. OCHA/GVA - 2003/0041
OCHA Situation Report No.1
India - Hailstorm
occurred on 12 March 2003

MAP - India: Hailstorm - Location Map

This report is based on information provided by the UNDP Office in India as well as media reports.


1. An unexpected severe hailstorm with a wind speed of 60-70 km per hour affected three districts in West Bengal, namely Bankura, Hooghly and, Howrah. Heavy rainfall hit several other parts of the state. According to weather officials the high pressure trough in the Bay of Bengal had led to the depression.

2. The death toll has gone up to 30 people: 3 in Bankura, 23 in Hooghly and, 4 in Howrah. Besides, more than 500 people have been injured. Most injuries were caused by the collapse of roofs, hailstones and, electrocution due to damaged electricity lines.

3. The hailstorm caused significant infrastructure damages. In the Hooghly district, 31,277 houses are fully collapsed and 35,000 partially. In the Bankura district, 6,852 houses are totally destroyed and 23,953 are damaged. The storm damaged electricity lines, which resulted in power disruption that affected rail and air services.

4. The storm also caused damages in rural areas. Huge loss to standing crops and horticulture has been reported. Plantation like boro paddy, banana, beetle and potato have suffered heavy damage. The current estimate of crops loss amounts to approximately INR 761.9 million (about USD 16 million).


5. Government Officials are visiting the affected districts. Cash, tarpaulins and contingency funds have been released to the affected districts, 27,000 tarpaulins have been distributed in Hooghly and 22,000 in Bankura. An amount of IRN 40 million (about USD 844,000) has been released to people below poverty line in the two most affected districts of Bankura (IRN 10 million) and Hooghly (IRN 30 million)


6. No official Government request for international assistance has been received so far.

7. OCHA is in close contact with the Office of the UN Resident Coordinator in India and will revert with further information, as it becomes available.

8. This situation report, together with further information on ongoing emergencies, is also available on the OCHA Internet Website at

Telephone: +41-22-917 12 34
Fax: +41-22-917 00 23

In case of emergency only: Tel. +41-22-917 20 10

Desk Officers:
Mr. R.Muller/Ms.Caroline Péguet
Direct Tel. +41-22-917 31 31/40 34

Press contact:
(GVA) - Ms. Elizabeth Byrs, direct Tel. +41-22-917 26 53
(N.Y.) - Ms. Stephanie Bunker, direct Tel. +1-212-963 87 40


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