Rains hit crops in AP coastal districts

As heavy rains continued to lash the coastal districts in the aftermath of Cyclone Nilam, agriculture in Andhra Pradesh has been heavily affected.

Rainfall continues in Nellore, Guntur, Prakasam and Krishna, affecting standing crops in about 77,000 hectares.

Besides the state capital, heavy rains also hit Srikakulam, Visakhapatnam and Vizianagaram districts.

"Crops, mostly paddy, in 76,980 hectares are in water. We have to see if something could be salvaged. Once the water recedes, district officials would enumerate and send reports of the extent of the damage," state Revenue Minister N Raghuveera Reddy told reporters at the state secretariat here on Friday.

Nilam, which crossed north Tamil Nadu coast on Wednesday evening, weakened into a deep depression causing widespread rains in Andhra Pradesh and south Karnataka. The minister informed that  rains would end in most of the areas by Friday. According to the met department, rainfall will continue for another 24 hours in Khammam, Warangal, Srikakulam, Vizianagaram and Visakhapatnam districts.

He further said that four persons were killed in the state in the cyclone related incidents, 3 due to electrocution and one due to a wall collapse.

The state government has directed the concerned district collectors to give ex-gratia to the kin of the deceased. 30 houses, 16 fully and 14 partially were damaged due to the rains. 449 electric poles were also damaged; as a result most of the coastal villages are reeling under darkness.

In all 13 relief camps were set up to provide succor to the poor. About 5,000 people were provided shelter in relief camps in Prakasam district alone.

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