Bhubaneswar: On 3rd May 2019, Odisha witnessed yet another devastating cyclone which made its landfall in Puri and caused massive destructions through its path. This Extremely Sever Tropical Cyclone Fani reminded people what they have witnessed almost 20 years back during 1999 Super Cyclone. Though intensity of Fani was less as compared to the Super Cyclone, but the damage caused by this Category-4 Cyclone was much much more. With early warning radars and quite accurate predictions, the Government was able to evacuate almost 12 lakh people to safer Cyclone Shelters. But the damage caused to kutcha houses, trees and crops was quite catastrophic and devastating. Being the most affected Puri, Bhubaneswar and Cuttack are still struggling for basic amenities like, electricity, shelter and water.
In such a difficult time of suffering, BCAC Squad came out with their volunteers for offering whatever possible for relief of the distressed. Team BCAC reached out to 3 villages to help the people in cleaning the roads, cutting down the fallen trees and distributed relief materials, such as candles, dry-foods, mosquito coils, water-purification tablets, sanitary napkins, mosquito coils, biscuits, along with cooked food for more than 2000 people in Fani affected villages. Team BCAC made several visits to the Cyclone affected villages to discuss with people and understand their requirements. The contingencies were supported with crowd-funding among BCAC members.
Team BCAC made their first visit to Rahangiria village in Puri district, where they distributed various necessary items like dry-foods, biscuits, candles, mosquito coils, sanitary napkins, water purification tablets, etc. They discussed with the village members to return back again for cooking one dinner for the entire village with more than 1200 population. With the support of local youth, BCAC successfully hosted dinner for the villagers, while helping them to clean the approach road of their village during the day time.
The next attempt was to explore a little interior pockets and support the distressed. BCAC chosen two interior villages in Gop Block inside Puri district, namely Nalihana and Thoraba. The team ventured early in the morning and reached the villages by 8AM. We discussed with the villagers and arranged cooked lunch for almost a thousand people from these two villages. Team BCAC also distributed candles, dress materials, biscuits and mosquito coils while cooking lunch for them.
As BCAC prompts, it’s not always about cycling, rather something more than it! In such a time of distress, when the state is struggling to reinstate basic amenities to the affected people, BCAC has made a small attempt to help a few thousand. We are sure this small ‘Art of Giving’ initiative from BCAC will inspire others to do their part of duty for bring back glory of Odisha. BCAC also plans to visit these villages in a couple of months’ time to initiate a ‘Plantation Drive’ to bring back the green cover.
BCAC would like to praise its member Sibasis Mohanty, who has voluntarily come forward to rebuild a bicycle repair shop as a livelihood support. This shop was on Balighai chowk on Puri-Konark Marine Drive road that was completely grounded in Fani. BCAC also like to congratulate Ajay Nanda, Gopal Krushna Sahu, Osheen (Pihu), Monalisha Mohapatra, Manas Ranjan, Manas Samantray, Neha, Ajay Parida, Santosh Rout, Manoj Prusty, and Biswasima Mohanty for their volunteering during relief efforts of BCAC.