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Cyclone-hit Berhampur limping back to normalcy

06:20 PM Jun 01, 2019 | Free Press Journal Correspondant

Berhampur: Leaving behind the trail of destruction caused by cyclone Phailin and two successive floods, Berhampur town in Ganjam district has started limping back to normalcy.

Power is almost restored in the commercial hub of southern Odisha. “Around 95 per cent of the families have got back power supply. The street lights will take some more days,” said Mayor K Madhavi.

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“Though the damage to the city’s power infrastructure was far less in 1999 super cyclone, it had taken 28 days to restore power. But this time, power was restored within 10 days,” she said.

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M Sudhakar Swamy, Secretary to the Urban Bank Road Merchant Associating, said “many shops were damaged. But after minimum repair work those have been reopened and all traders have resumed business,” Jewellers hope the market will shine soon.

“As such, jewellery market is not having a good time in the entire country as walk-in customers have fallen despite the festive occasions of Dhanteras and Diwali. I am sure the market will rebound,” said Secretary of Berhampur Jewellers’ Association Siba Prasad Rao.

Weavers of this ‘Silk City’, known for its hand-woven quality silk fabrics, have recommenced their looms.

“We closed for more than two weeks since there was no power. Looms are safe as these were indoors. Work has restarted,” said K Mala Rao, a weaver. The city has around 350 looms, but only about 85 are active. They produce fabrics worth over Rs 25 lakh a month.

“What has happened has happened. But life must go on,” said Jitendra Lenka, a food vendor who resumed work at the busy Indira Gandhi Square after some 20 days yesterday.

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