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12-year-old sends SOS to teacher

The Class VI student and her parents had taken shelter in the bathroom because that was the only place in the house with a concrete roof
 An avalanche of foliage blankets a road off Victoria Memorial on Wednesday afternoon just when Cyclone Amphan was beginning to unleash its explosive power on  Calcutta.

Jhinuk Mazumdar   |   Calcutta   |   Published 21.05.20, 09:32 PM

A 12-year-old girl in Hingalganj in North 24-Parganas messaged her school headmaster at 7.30pm on Wednesday that her house was about to collapse.

Sir, amra khub kharap poristithi te achhi. Amader ghar kichu samay-er moddhe bhenge portey pare. (Sir, we are in a very bad state. Our house might collapse soon),” Rupsa Mondal said in her message.

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The Class VI student of Kanaknagar SD Institution and her parents had taken shelter in the bathroom because that was the only place in the house with a concrete roof.

The rest of the house had a roof made of hay, which got blown away when Cyclone Amphan struck.

“About 10 days ago we had built a concrete roof over the bathroom. It sheltered us as the cyclone raged outside,” Rupsa’s father Sankar Mondal, a landless farmer, said.

Rupsa lives with her parents in Kothabari village in the Dulduli gram panchayat by the river. Around 6.30pm, the three ran for cover as the cyclone kept raging.

“At one point I tried to step out of the bathroom to see whether our room was alright… the moment I tried to step out I lost balance and fell down. I didn’t try after that because I thought we needed to save our lives,” Mondal said.

The three came out early on Thursday to find a rain-soaked bed, scattered rice, a tilted almirah and no roof. “When I called the student and spoke to her father, they seemed scared. Given their financial condition it will take a long time for them to rebuild their home,” Pulak Roy Chowdhury, the headmaster of Kanaknagar SD Institution in Sandelerbill in Hingalganj, said.



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