first_imgOver 40 lakh people were affected in Odisha by the heavy rain that pounded 12 districts post Titli cyclonic storm since Wednesday afternoon.Incessant rain triggered floods in Ganjam, Rayagada, Kandhamal and Gajapati districts on Thursday, and water-logging in at least eight other districts left eight persons dead and thousands homeless till Friday evening.As many as 3,25,644 persons were evacuated and sheltered in 1,162 relief centres caused by cyclone and subsequent floods. Local administration in affected districts rescued 1,27,262 people stranded at different places on Friday and they were put up in 963 relief centres.Grim situationAs the flood situation looked grim in Ganjam and Gajapati, the State government urged the Centre to provide choppers for rescue and relief operations. Two Navy helicopters reached Gopalpur in the afternoon.Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik held a review meeting at the State Secretariat and directed the administration to shift people stranded in vulnerable areas to safer places. He cancelled Dussehra holidays of all government employees in view of the emergency situation.Heavy rain forecastThe storm weakened into a deep depression and lay centred over Odisha about 80 km southwest of Keonjhar by Friday evening. It is likely to continue to move northeastwards towards Gangetic West Bengal and weaken into a well-marked low pressure area during the next 18 hours. The Bhubaneswar Meteorological Centre warned of heavy rain at isolated places in the State during next 24 hours.Titli left behind a trail of destruction. As per initial estimates, 1,514 houses were damaged in Ganjam, Kandhamal and Puri districts.last_img