Lightning, hailstorm, storm wreaks havoc across Assam


Strong winds, heavy rains, hailstorm and lightning lashed Assam on Sunday, causing widespread damage to houses, standing crops, livestock shelters leaving behind a trail of tragedy and destruction.

A portion of the ceiling at the Guwahati airport collapsed on Sunday as sudden rain battered the city. Operations were halted briefly and six flights were diverted after heavy winds wreaked havoc at the Lokpriya Gopinath Bordoloi International Airport.

The storm also uprooted trees that blocked an approach road to the airport.

It took one rain to wash away a month of de-siltation and storm drain construction work. On March 31, most parts of the city were inundated after the rain which was followed by gusty wind and hailstorm.

The districts affected include Kamrup, Morigaon, Nagaon, Sonitpur, Biswanath, Hojai, West Karbi Anglong, Dima Hasao, East Karbi Anglong, Golaghat, Jorhat, Majuli, Lakhimpur, Dhemaji, Sivasagar, Charaideo, Dibrugarh, and Tinsukia.

The Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) has issued a warning for 18 districts in Assam, forecasting heavy storms, rain, and lightning strikes on March 31.

The unexpected storm, accompanied by heavy rain, destroyed crops and reduced as many as 40 houses to rubble in East Karbi Anglong.

Residents of Bilasipara, Assam, were left in awe as a colossal hailstone, weighing a staggering 1 kilogram, descended from the heavens during a tumultuous spell of rain and thunderstorms. The incident left locals baffled, marking the first recorded instance of such an extraordinary phenomenon in the region.

In Kheroni village, West Karbi Anglong, a teenager named Pintu Chauhan(18) suffered a fatal lightning strike while tending to cattle in the fields, causing severe burns.

The natural disaster claimed a live of a woman in Cachar district.

As per inputs, a huge tree fell on a house when a mother was asleep with her 4-month-old child. While the mother died on the spot. However, her infant son emerged unharmed from the ordeal
The deceased had been identified as Shakhi Begum Laskar.

In another incident, more than 200 people were trapped in Guwahati’s Garbhanga area on Sunday after several trees were uprooted, leaving the people stranded due to heavy storm rains.
As per inputs, at least 5 vehicles were reportedly damaged.

After extensive efforts, the trapped people were rescued by personnel of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and State Disaster Response Fund (SDRF).
However, no casualty has been reported in the area.

In addition, a severe storm in Jorhat district caused widespread damage to homes, villages, and public infrastructure, displacing families and causing the loss of important documents.

Heavy hailstorm struck the village of Ghoga in Nalbari district wreaking havoc on the local community.

Religious ceremonies and community events were also disrupted, adding to the distress of the affected people. The effects of these disasters have been felt across Assam, with other districts also dealing with the aftermath.

The India Meteorological Department (IMD) forecasted on Sunday that thunderstorms with lightning and moderate to heavy rainfall are likely to lash Assam along with other northeastern states till April 4.

The Regional Meteorological Centre, Guwahati, said, “A cyclonic circulation lies over North East Assam at 1.5 km above mean sea level. Under the influence of the above synoptic conditions and moisture incursion from the Bay of Bengal to the northeastern region due to S-ly/SW-ly winds in the lower lever, light to moderate rainfall at many to most places with isolated heavy to very heavy rainfall along with light to moderate thunderstorms and lightning and gusty wind with speeds of 30–40 kmph is likely to occur during 31 March -04 April 2024.”

The meteorological centre issued an orange alert for March 31 and a yellow alert until April 4, indicating a thunderstorm with lightning and heavy rain accompanied by gusty wind with a speed 30-40 kmph at isolated place.