BJD leader Jay Panda on Sunday said that Southern Odisha particularly the Ganjam district has been hit severely by Cyclone Phailin.
Panda said that wind conditions are so strong that air relief operations have not yet commenced. However he said that ground relief operations have started in most parts of the state.
He also said that damage has been minimized in the districts due to early coordination between the government and armed forces.
Cyclone 'Phailin', which forced the evacuation of over eight lakh people, left a trail of destruction in coastal areas of Odisha and Andhra Pradesh and disrupted communication lines before weakening considerably today.
National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) vice-chairman M Shashidhar Reddy said, wind speed in Gopalpur where the eye of the cyclone passed through, has come down to 90-100 kmph at 8 am.
He said, NDMA is still trying to assess the devastation caused by the disaster.
Nearly eleven hours after hitting the coasts of Odisha and Andhra Pradesh with a wind speed of about 200 kilometers per hour, Cyclone Phailin is reported to have calmed down on Sunday morning
According to local media reports, the wind speed has reduced in Bhubaneswar, but is still blowing strong in Paradip and other places which are closer to the eye of the storm. Cyclone Phailin hit land with a wind speed of around 200 kilometers per hour and a 3.5 meter high storm surge
The landfall took place at around 9.15 p.m. on Saturday night and the impact of the cyclone lasted for over seven hours before it moved in a north-northwesterly direction
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has been briefed by Cabinet Secretary Ajit Seth about the impact of Cyclone Phailin and his office is continuously monitoring the situation arising out of it
Dr. Singh has directed that all possible assistance should be extended to the two state governments concerned in ensuring the safety and security of the people and in relief and rescue operations
Union Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde said Saturday that at least eight districts of Odisha had faced the brunt of the cyclone, while three districts of Andhra Pradesh namely Srikakulam, Vizianagaram and Visakhapatnam were affected.