Dhaka, Nov 19 (UNI) The death toll in the deadly cyclone SIDR has risen to 2579 in Bangladesh, even as the government today made an international appeal to provide emergency aid to the victims and post-cyclone rehabilitation.
Reuters, however, reported that the confirmed death toll from the cyclone had reached 3,113 by today, while 3,322 had been injured and 1,063 missing.
Advisor to the Food and Disaster Ministry, Tapan Chowdhury, said donor countries and agencies had so far pledged emergency aid of 140 million dollars.
In view of the grim post-cyclone situation, caretaker government Chief Advisor Fakruddin Ahmed has decided to shorten his programme at Commonwealth Summit to be held in Uganda on November 23-25.
Local media reports say huge colossal losses to life and property as well as extensive damage to flaura and fauna in the Sundarbans forest has been caused.
Bangladesh Red Crescent Society, that deployed 42,000 volunteers in the cyclone hit 15 south southwestern coastal districts, said the death toll might cross 10,000.
Disaster Ministry put the death toll at 2579.
More than 31,00,000 people in 28 districts came under the fury of hurricane Sidr, which slammed the coast with terrifying wind speeds of up to 240 kmph.
The storm damaged 273,233 houses completely while 607,311 houses partially. Standing crops on some 18,122 acres of land were completely damaged and crops on around 7,04,768 acres of land partially damaged.
As many as 242,355 domestic animals and poultry birds perished during the tempest, the sources said.
Aid workers fear inadequate supplies of food, drinking water and medicine could lead to outbreaks of disease.
World leaders offered condolences and sympathies for the cyclone victims while donor agencies and volunteer organisations started sending emergency relief for the survivors.
Reuters adds that military ships and helicopters were trying to reach thousands of people believed stranded on islands in the Bay of Bengal and in coastal areas still cut off after last week's storm.
World Vision, one of many non-governmental groups working to help survivors, said about 1,000 fishermen were still unaccounted for.
The Dhaka Foreign Ministry said the King of Saudi Arabia has announced a 100 million dollar grant for the victims. Riyadh would also airlift 300 tonnes of food and relief materials.