Railway Minister Mamata Banerjee on Monday said she apprised Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and other Central ministers of the grave situation in West Bengal where cyclone Aila struck.
“I contacted the Prime Minister (Manmohan Singh), the Defence Minister (A K Antony) and also talked to Pranabda (Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee) four times,” the Trinamool Congress chief, who was to leave for Delhi but stayed back to stand beside the people because of the storm today, said.
She said army and BSF were helping in clearing roads of uprooted trees and were assisting the police.
The Centre would help the state government in tackling the situation, she said. “I am also asking those in the Railways to arrange shelter for affected people,” Banerjee said.
An emergency control room, she said, has been set up at her Kalighat residence to monitor the situation and provide succour.
Quoting information available to her, the Trinamool Congress chief said vast areas in South 24 Parganas, including Patharpatima, Sagar, Kulpi, Namkhana were severely hit by the cyclone.
Alleging that panchayats were steeped in corruption, she said the disaster management mechanism in the state was not working.