Death toll reaches 12 in Orissa tornado

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Kendrapara (Orissa), Apr. 1 (ANI): A tornado on Tuesday evening killed at least 12 people and injured 150 others in villages of Orissa's Kendrapara district.

"Twelve bodies were recovered so far after the furious tornado swept 11 villages in five gram panchayats. A large number of people were injured," Additional Superintendent of Police Kumarmani Meher said.

However, local panchayat raj functionaries and residents of Rajkanika block have put the death toll at 20.

"The tornado damaged more than 300 houses, uprooted a large number of trees blocking roads and toppled electric poles during its brief spell of fury," Kendrapara Collector Sisirkanta Panda said.

Over 150 people were injured, many of them critically, in the storm. The condition of about 25 people, including elderly and children, was stated to be critical, he added.

The injured have been admitted to hospitals at Rajkanika and Aul, while those with critical injuries have been shifted to S C B Medical College and a Hospital in Cuttack.

According to the local sources, the administration has granted one-lakh rupees each to families of the dead, and 50,000 for those who were handicapped in the tornado.

7,500 rupees have been granted to seriously injured, while 2,500 rupees to injured persons.

BJP's prime ministerial candidate L.K. Advani is likely to visit the affected areas on Wednesday. (ANI)

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