At least three people were killed in Tamil Nadu, over 1,000 trees uprooted and some low-lying areas marooned due to water-logging following heavy rains on Thursday as severe cyclonic storm Nivar made landfall near Puducherry.
Subsequently, Nivar weakened into a cyclonic storm and further into a deep depression, centred about 50 km west-southwest of Tirupati at 2.30 pm, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) officials said.
According to IMD, it is to weaken into a depression during the next six hours.
About 2.30 lakh people have been accommodated in relief camps following the cyclone, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister K Palaniswami said.
Earlier, heavy rains lashed Tamil Nadu and Puducherry as Nivar made landfall in the early hours, leading to inundation and uprooting of trees.
Union Home Minister Amit Shah tweeted, “We are closely monitoring the situation in Tamil Nadu and Puducherry in the wake of Cyclone Nivar.”
In Tamil Nadu, three people, including a woman were killed in rain-related incidents such as tree and wall collapses here, nearby Ponneri and Villupuram, authorities said. Officials
said about 1,086 trees were uprooted in Tamil Nadu and almost all of them have been removed.
In a few places, overhead electricity cables snapped, as heavy trees fell over them and also some vehicles.
In Chennai, citizens in many parts complained of disruption in internet services. Palaniswami visited Cuddalore, close to Puducherry, and took stock of the damage in the district. He inspected plantain crops damaged by the cyclone in the district and reviewed the situation along with senior state officials including chief secretary K Shanmugam.
Low-lying neighbourhoods in Chennai, including those in suburban Irumbuliyur, Mudichur and Urapakkam witnessed flooding and water entered the houses of many residents.
Rescue personnel ferried cooked food to the people using inflatable boats. While some chose to shift to the homes of their relatives, others continued to stay put battling odds. In city areas, civic workers pumped out stagnant waters from several locations.