'Cyclone Laila' affects normal life in Andhra Pradesh

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Vijayawada (Andhra Pradesh), May 21 (ANI): Heavy rainfall and strong winds preceding 'Cyclone Laila' have adversely affected normal life, transport and communication links in Andhra Pradesh's coastal regions.

Vijayawada Railway station, which is a vital junction, presented a scene of hundreds of stranded passengers since many trains had been cancelled or diverted.

Due to the cyclone alert, several trains scheduled to run through cyclone-affected routes, had been cancelled and diverted by the South Central Railway.

The other trains were also reported to be running behind schedule.

The trains operating on Vijayawada-Hyderabad, Vijayawada-Machlipatanam, Vijayawada-Howrah (Kolkata), Vijayawada-Chennai and Hyderabad-Chennai-Nagpur routes were disrupted.

"Many trains are cancelled. We are facing many problems. If express trains are not running they should at least run passenger trains for short distances so that we can reach our destination," said a stranded passenger.

Passengers had no other option to endure this situation.

"If any train gets cancelled it causes lot of trouble to the common man. They should try to find solution to such problems. Railway persons did not give any proper information. They should try to arrange some relief trains," said another stranded passenger.

However, the railway authorities said that arrangements had been made for special counters to help the passengers and the general public must realise the gravity of the situation.

The Andhra Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation (APSRTC) cancelled several bus services in the coastal regions since the roads had been inundated by the heavy downpour and overflowing streams.

The cancellation of bus services added more to the woes of stranded passengers.

Private bus services also came to a halt as the road network was damaged in Nellore, Prakasam, Guntur, Krishna, and East and West Godavari districts. All these districts are located along the east coast.

Electricity and water supply services were also hit in most of the towns and cities in the coastal Andhra Pradesh.

Power shortage led to breakdown in systems of telecommunication and allied links at several places.

Soldiers of the Indian Army equipped with emergency and allied kits such as boats have swung into action to rescue the affected people. (ANI)

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