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On the fateful evening of 20 May this year, the catastrophic Supercyclone Amphan tore through West Bengal affecting the southern zone including the capital city of Kolkata. Ground reports from the ravaged state show heartwrenching pictures of the devastation that claimed 80 lives.
While the extent of the destruction is beyond estimation at the moment, preliminary assessment suggests losses worth Rs 1 lakh crore. More than 5,000 trees, hundreds of lamposts and traffic signals were uprooted across the capital city. Many areas are still inundated, with no power, network or connectivity.
Hailing from the city myself, I have been trying to get in touch with my family for the past two days and thankfully, some emergency helplines came to my aid. A lot of us are still desperately trying to reach our families and friends back in Bengal. Here is a list of emergency helplines active at present.
- Kolkata Police – 033 2214 3024, 033 2214 1310, 033 2214 3230, 9432624365 (WhatsApp)
- Howrah Municipal Corporation – 033 2637 1735
- Amphan Super Cyclone Response – 9163003100 (Manmatha Roy), 7292013690 (Debojit Thakur)
Where to Donate
West Bengal is undergoing one of the darkest days in history with Supercyclone Amphan striking the state amid the aggravating COVID-19 pandemic.
If you want to stand beside the affected people amid such a dual crisis, then here is a detailed list of organisations and individuals who have started relief efforts across the state in a war footing.
- West Bengal State Emergency Relief Fund – This is the official relief fund of the state government. Disbursal will be done across affected districts through government officials and administration.
- JU Commune – Jadavpur Commune, managed by Jadavpur University students, research scholars and alumni, has been operational since the national lockdown, manufacturing sanitisers and disinfectants, and distributing them in and around campus to guards, civic volunteers, delivery executives etc. After Amphan, they are now organising relief for the survivors in Kolkata and other districts while also operating a community kitchen serving around 600 people daily.
Click here for donation details – https://www.facebook.com/sourav.sahoo.92
Contact number – Sourav Sahoo: 9051712203
- Humans of Patuli – This South Kolkata-based community platform is supporting Amphan survivors including the underprivileged people also affected by the lockdown.
Know more here – https://www.facebook.com/HumansOfPatuli
Contact number – Utsarjana Mutsuddi: 9836302826
- Ebong Alap – This NGO is organising relief in the affected regions of Sundarbans.
Read more here – https://ebongalap.org/
Contact number – Sarmistha Dutta Gupta: +91 85828 74273
- Shramajeebi Swasthya – With support from West Bengal Doctors’ Forum, this organisation is providing medical relief to the survivors
Contact here – email@example.com
Contact number – Dr. Punyabrata Goon: +919830922194
- Amphan Super Cyclone Response by Quarantined Student-Youth Network (QSY) – They are supporting survivors in West Medinipur and Sundarbans through people’s kitchens and medical camps. They are also looking for on-ground volunteers to join their emergency endeavour.
Click here to know more – https://www.instagram.com/p/CAcNzW-AYEo/?igshid=1v7afps8h7s8q
Contact Number – Manmatha Roy: +91 91630 03100
- Rahat Amphan Cyclone by Goonj – Renowned non-profit foundation Goonj is supplying rations, toiletries and other essentials to the survivors.
Know more here – https://www.instagram.com/p/CAcoAbQlC7q/?igshid=15vew4z4xivxr
- Mukti – The organisation has set up a relief and rehabilitation centre in the Sundarbans. They urgently need dry rations, baby food, sanitation supplies and tarpaulin for the people who lost their homes, among other necessities.
Click here for donation details – https://muktiweb.org/
- Helpp Association – Set up by a food delivery executive, this NGO is doing phenomenal work in reaching out to the distressed in Sundarbans and Kolkata after Amphan. They are distributing dry food at present.
More details here – https://www.facebook.com/helppindia/
Contact number – Pathikrit Saha: 91233 48301
- Give A Litte (Ektu Deen) – This community welfare initiative started during the lockdown and will now continue to help the Amphan-affected.
Know more here – https://www.facebook.com/GiveALittleEktuDeen/
Contact number – Aditi Roy Ghatak: +91 98300 22504
A small contribution from you can now help hundreds in the devastated state to restart their lives, amid this unprecedented crisis. Share this article with your friends and urge them to join in the #DoForBengal initiative as well.
(Edited by Saiqua Sultan)