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NEW DELHI, October 18. (Itar-Tass). — The number of victims of cyclone Phailin, which hit on Saturday the east coast of India, reached 43 people. As reported on Friday by Press Trust of India news agency, last night, rescuers found the bodies of several more victims of the floods in Orissa.
The water level in Orissa is now subsiding; the state’s government has already started preparing for recovery efforts. By the weekend, about 500 camps for the victims will be opened. According to preliminary estimates, Phailin affected over 10 million people. Half a million hectares of crops were damaged, around 300 thousand homes were destroyed.
The government conducted the largest-ever rescue operation, which helped to avoid major casualties among the population. Thus, in a few days a total of 900 thousand people, or about 95% of the inhabitants, have been evacuated from the coastal states of Orissa and Andhra Pradesh.
In 1999, a similar cyclone claimed lives of about 10 thousand people.