The Centre on Monday announced ₹2 lakh ex-gratia from the Prime Minister’s National Relief Fund (PMNRF) for families of people who were killed in lightning in different parts of West Bengal. At least 20 people were killed in lightning strikes in three southern districts of the state.
“My thoughts are with all those who lost their near and dear ones due to lightning in parts of West Bengal. May the injured recover at the earliest,” PM Modi tweeted on Monday evening.
The Prime Minister’s Office said in a tweet, “PM @narendramodi has approved an ex-gratia of Rs. 2 lakh each from the PMNRF for the next of kin of those who have lost their lives due to lightning in various parts of West Bengal. Rs. 50,000 would be given to the injured.”
According to West Bengal State disaster management authority, Murshidabad, Hooghly and Purba Medinipur district were among those affected. While nine people died each in Murshidabad and Hooghly districts, two others lost their lives in the Purba Medinipur district, an official of authority said.
Three people were injured in the lightning strikes in the Murshidabad district and were admitted to the Jangipur hospital.
Expressing his heartfelt condolences over the tragedy, Union home minister Amit Shah said on Twitter, “The loss of lives due to lightning in different parts of West Bengal is deeply saddening. My sincerest condolences to the families of those who have lost their loved ones. Praying for the speedy recovery of those injured.”
According to India Meteorological Department (IMD), thunderstorms with lightning and gusty wind occurred in several districts of the state. A squall passed over the Alipore observatory in the city at 4.25pm on Monday from the northwesterly direction with the highest gust of 59 kmph and it lasted for two minutes, it said.
The weather office forecast a generally cloudy sky in Kolkata and neighbourhood on Tuesday with the possibility of rain or thundershowers.
(With inputs from agencies)