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Issue No:81
  • :0973–1121
  • :June
  • :2019

Samudra Report No.81, June 2019

Report / Natural Disasters

A Heavy Price

The cyclonic wind that swept through the shores of the Indian state of Odisha in the wake of Cyclone Fani have razed the livelihoods of many fisherfolk


This report is by Ashis Senapati (ashissenapati3@gmail.com), a journalist based in Odisha, India


On 3 May 2019, as Cyclone Fani swept through the coast of Odisha on the eastern seaboard of India, many homes were either badly damaged or completely shattered. Thousands of trees were uprooted. Most businesses and infrastructure were also destroyed, including the fishing industry, which is the economic backbone of the state’s fisherfolk community of around 600,000-strong.

Fani affected over 200,000 fisherfolk. About 11,000 fishing vessels anchored along the Odisha coast were damaged in the gusty winds under the influence of the cyclonic storm. Many fishing vessels collided with one another and many were tossed over, said Prasan Behera, secretary of the Odisha Traditional Fish Workers’ Union (OTFWU).

Hundreds of houses in the fishing hamlets were damaged and, as a result, large numbers of fisherfolk are now living under the open sky, added Behera.

""We underestimated the intensity of Cyclone Fani and paid a heavy price,” said Apala Raju, a fisherman in Penthakota fishing...

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