Thane Cyclone Relief - EFICOR appeals for support of livelihood restoration for the cyclone affected

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“I work as weaver on daily wages earning around Rs.70 to 100 per day. ‘Thane’ destroyed our house and I have lost opportunities to work. I do not know how to get back to normal life. I am still waiting for assistance from the government.” Says 70 year old Rajalingam, who lives with his wife Ramachi at MGR Nagar, Meenachipettai in Kurinjipadi block of Cuddalore district.

Pazhanivel is a daily labourer from Meenachipettai village of Kurinjipadi block, he says “heavy winds uprooted my Tamarind tree which fell on our thatched house. We are going through difficult situation, this our bad luck. I don’t know where to look for help.”

These are some stories of the cyclone affected people in Cuddalore district, Tamil Nadu and Puducheri who are in deep agony , .

A very severe cyclonic storm known as Cyclone Thane, considered as the strongest tropical cyclone of 2011 within the North Indian Ocean caused devastation to coastal Tamil Nadu and Puducheri. Thane initially developed as a tropical disturbance within the monsoon trough to the west of Indonesia. Over the next couple of days the disturbance gradually developed further while moving towards the northwest, and was declared a Depression during December 25, before being declared Cyclonic Storm Thane during the next day. After its development had slowed down during December 27, Thane became a very severe cyclonic storm during December 28. As it approached the Indian states of Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh, it weakened slightly. Thane then made landfall early on 30 December 2011, on the north Tamil Nadu coast between Cuddalore and Puducherry.

‘Thane’ left a trail of destruction majorly in Cuddalore district and Puducherry and also impacted Villupuram and Nagapattinam districts in Tamil Nadu. The disaster caused 46 deaths and about 6000 villagers living along the coast were forced to seek safety in relief shelters. As per the need assessment by Independent NGO team, 3.8 lakh houses have been damaged, 58,000 hectares of standing paddy crop, 23,500 hectares of cashew plantation, 5,752 hectares of sugarcane and 8917 hectares of oil seed plantation have been damaged resulting in huge loss to livelihood. There was also substantial loss of livestock (poultry, goat, sheep, buffalo, cow etc).

EFICOR is planning to involve in two phases of providing relief for 1200 families mostly in Tsunami affected areas. The process of relief distribution is in progress. The food materials consist of rice, dhal, salt and oil and nonfood materials consist of candles, clothes, mats, hygiene kit and school books. EFICOR staff are currently procuring the materials locally for distribution.

The estimated cost of relief for 1200 families is Rs. 28, 59,978.

EFICOR also plans to restore livelihood of 500 most needy families in Cuddalore district of Tamil Nadu. The estimatead cost of livelihood restoration for 500 most needy families (cost per family is Rs.6000/-) is Rs. 30,00,000. A total budget of Rs.58,59,978 is required for the program.