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Storm death toll rises to 34

50The death toll in the nor’wester that lashed several districts in the country on Saturday climbed up to 34 with northern district Bogra remain the worst affected area. In Bogra, 10 more people were found dead yesterday after a nor’wester hit the district around 6pm Saturday and ran amok for about 45 minutes, raising the death toll to 19 there.
Of the deceased, six are from sadar upazila, three from Shahjahanpur upazila, three from Sariakandi upazila, two from Kahalu upazila, one each from Dhunut, Sonatola and Gabtali upazilas, and two from Nondigram upazila.
Bogra Deputy Commissioner Shafiqur Reza said most of the casualties took place due to wall collapse, boat capsize and fall of tree branches during the storm. Power supply to the district remained snapped since Saturday night and according to officials concerned it will take two-three days more to resume supply to the district town. “It will take us two-three days to resume power supply only to the district headquarters,” said Hazrat Ali, superintendent engineer of PDB in Bogra. He, however, could not notify how many days would it take for them to resume power supply to the entire district.
An official, on condition of anonymity, said about 14-15 days are needed to get the power supply back to normalcy in the district.
Md Khorshed Alam, Additional Deputy Commissioner (ADC-General), has been designated to coordinate the relief and rescue work in the district. According to him, more than 200 people were injured in the storm and of them, 65 injured were being treated at Shaheed Ziaur Rahman Medical College Hospital.
The ADC also said that the government has already mobilised relief and monitory assistance for the people in the affected areas. The victims will be able to collect rice from their respective upazilas and the government has already injected an additional amount of Tk 5 lakh to the relief fund to help the storm-hit people, the official said.
Besides houses, the storm also caused damages to mango orchards and standing crops in huge swaths of lands in the district.
The poultry sector in the district dealt the worst blow and chickens in most of the farms were killed by the storm.
According to an official estimate, 4,17,004 people of 92,000 families were affected during the storm. About 99,000 houses and 254 educational institutions were damaged, according to the estimate. In Rajshahi, the death toll climbed up to four with another man falling victim to the nor’wester.
The victim, identified as Mozammel Haque, 55, of Peergachha village under Khasrajbari union in Kazipur upazila of the district, died and three others were injured when a boat carrying over 40 passengers capsized mid river because of the nor’wester. In Chapainawabganj, the death toll rose to two, with another man falling victim to nor’wester.  Md. Abdullah, 20, of Nayansuka area under Chapainawabganj municipality, was injured when a branch of tree fell on him around 6pm on Saturday.
He succumbed to injuries while being taken to Rajshahi Medical College Hospital. In Manikganj, a widow was killed at Daulatpur as a tree fell on her tin-shed house during the storm on Saturday night.
The victim–Sandhi Begum, 55, of Bangram area under Khalshi union of the Daulatpur upazila, was killed on the spot. A quack was killed as a nor’wester lashed Kushtia on Saturday night. The deceased was identified as Ataul Islam, son of late Kader Miah of Sindah village in Kumarkhali upazila.
Witnesses said a thunderbolt struck Ataul when he was returning home from Bandhbazar during the storm around 9:30 pm, leaving him dead on the spot.
Besides, boro paddy and many dwelling hoses were damaged while several hundred trees uprooted in the affected areas of the district. In Jamalpur, a woman– Zahura Khatun, 56, of Sattar Mollah at village Barul– was killed and three went missing when a boast carrying them capsized during the nor’wester.
About 8,000 houses and 50 educational institutions got damaged during the storm and scores of trees were uprooted in the district.
Power supply that was suspended during the storm on Saturday resumed to the district nearly after 24 hours yesterday. Besides, hundreds of people were reportedly injured during the nor’wester on Saturday in several districts incluyding Naogaon, Habiganj, Pabna, Pirojpur, Jamalpur, Munshiganj, and Dhaka. Meanwhile, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina expressed her condolences over the deaths in the storm. She also directed the relief and disaster management ministry to form a monitoring cell to oversee the relief works. BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia also expressed her condolences over the storm deaths.