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CM Yogi Adityanath Blames Weather Department For 75 Storm Deaths In UP

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| May 6 , 2018 , 15:11 IST

Star BJP campaigner and Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, who had been in poll-bound Karnataka last week when massive storms stuck north India, resulting in the death of nearly 75 people in UP, on Saturday blamed the weather department for the deaths.

The dust storms and subsequent thunderstorms led to the uprooting of trees, snapped power cables and the collapse of many thatched houses, resulting in the death of a total of 124 people and injury to 300 others across 5 states.

Cutting short his Karnataka campaign to review the storm-hit situation in his state, Yogi Adityanath, speaking to media, blamed the weather department for not providing sufficient warning ahead of the storms.

ALSO READ: Dust Storm Death Toll Reaches 109, Storm Conditions To Continue For 3 More Days

"I will be looking into that matter. I have ordered a meeting on this matter.... Why didn't the weather department alert people on time," Yogi Adityanath told reporters.

Apart from the UP CM, Relief Commissioner of Uttar Pradesh Sanjay Kumar had earlier also blamed the weather department for not issuing a suitable alert ahead of the storm.

"The weather department's feedback said that the storm wasn't of a very high intensity but often local factors play a role. It was quite intense for the Saharanpur area even though the damage there was relatively lesser than other areas. There has been a lot of damage in Agra," Kumar had said earlier.

The UP CM had been facing flak for campaigning in Karnataka despite the large number of deaths in his own state. Yogi Adityanath flew back to Agra on Friday evening, which was the worst hit district in the state with nearly 40 deaths being recorded from Agra itself.

CM Adityanath after returning to UP visited Agra's state-run hospital and later met with affected families. He added that the government has issued warnings for the storms that are expected to continue till May 8.

"We are informing people about the dangers and telling them to get to safety," he said.

The large number of deaths that took place due to the storms on May 3-4 were higher than usual as the storm stuck overnight, thereby not giving people living in thatched houses a chance to escape.