Every year during the cyclone season in India, various tropical cyclones form in the Bay of Bengal or in the Arabian Sea, bringing strong winds and heavy rains. Here we have tried to compile a list of few severe to very severe cyclones that hit India in last one decade causing massive destruction of life and property.
Cyclone Hudhud (2014) - Very severe cyclonic storm Hudhud had not only killed 46 persons and injured 43 others but also affected 20.93 lakh families and took lives of 2831 animals and 24.43 lakh poultry/ducks in four districts on October 12. The cyclone has caused widespread damage to parts of Andhra Pradesh and Orissa states. The winds and heavy rains have damaged power lines and buildings and prompted the evacuation of 350,000 people from their homes.
Cyclone Phailin (2013)– Cyclone Phailin was equivalent to a category 5 storm- the most powerful. It struck the Odisha and Andhra coast causing massive destruction in the region- affecting 12 million people. Phailin is a Thai word which means Sapphire. This cyclone prompted India's biggest evacuation in 23 years with more than 5,50,000 people being moved from the coastline in Odisha and Andhra Pradesh to safer shelters. Phailin brought very heavy rain of over 600 mm at many stations of Odisha. It also damaged crops worth Rs 2,400 crore and claimed over 40 lives. Loses due to Cyclone Phailin were estimated to be around 696 million dollars or Rs. 420 crore.
Cyclone Nilam (2012)- Cyclonic Storm Nilam was the deadliest tropical cyclone to directly affect south India since Cyclone Jal in 2010. It made landfall near Mahabalipuram on October 31 as a strong cyclonic storm with peak winds of 85 kmph. In Chennai's Marina Beach, strong winds pushed piles of sand ashore and seawater reached nearly 100m inland. More than 3000 people were evacuated around Mahabalipuram in the wake of the storm. While damages to property were considerable, human casualties were very few, Nilam caused economic losses of around Rs 100 crore because of torrential rain. As sea tides became high, a 'Danger 7' alarm was issued at the Chennai Port to minimize damage.
Cyclone Thane (2011) - Thane was the strongest tropical cyclone of 2011 within the North Indian Ocean. Thane became a very severe cyclonic storm on December 28, as it approached the Indian states of Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh and made landfall at north Tamil Nadu coast between Cuddalore and Puducherry on December 30. Thane left at least 46 people dead in Tamil Nadu and Puducherry. Cuddalore and Puducherry were the worst affected areas.
Cyclone Laila (2010) - Severe cyclonic storm Laila was the first cyclonic storm to affect southeast India since the 1990 Andhra Pradesh cyclone. Laila developed on May 17, 2010 in the Bay of Bengal and made a landfall in Andhra Pradesh on the 20th of May. Cyclone Laila caused major flooding and damage along its path. Ongole in Andhra Pradesh recorded heavy rainfall of about 460 mm in just two days. Another town Addanki received the highest rainfall of 522 mm, followed by Maddipadu with 510 mm and Kothapatnam 258 mm in just 24 hours. The state government faced a loss of over Rs 500 crore due to Cyclone Laila.
Cyclone Jal (2010) - Jal was the fourth severe cyclonic storm of the year 2010. Jal is a Sanskrit word, meaning water.. Jal brought torrential rains over parts of Thailand and Malaysia, triggering severe flooding and killing several people. In Sri Lanka, heavy rainfall with strong winds of up to 110kmph caused flooding affecting around 80,000 people. Storm warning were hoisted in Ganjam and Jagatsinghpur districts of Orissa and over 70,000 people were evacuated from four districts of Andhra Pradesh. Cyclone Jal killed at least 54 people in India alone. About 300 thousand hectares of cropland was devastated by the cyclone. The remnants of Jal continued to move northwest, they brought light to moderate spells of rain in India's warmest state of Rajasthan and also in Gujarat.
Cyclone Phyan (2009) - Cyclonic Storm Phyan developed as a tropical disturbance in the Arabian Sea to the southwest of Colombo in Sri Lanka on November 4, 2009 and made landfall in south India on November 7. Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC) named this cyclonic Storm as Phyan. High Alert was issued in states of Gujarat and Maharashtra as heavy rainfall of over 25 cm was expected. Massive damage to property was reported in coastal districts of Maharashtra, such as Ratnagiri, Raigad, Sindhudurg, Thane and Palghar.
Cyclone Nisha (2008) - Cyclone Nisha was the seventh tropical cyclone in the Bay of Bengal in the year 2008. A fairly weak tropical cyclone, it caused some notable damage in India and Sri Lanka. On November 26, the Indian Meteorological Department upgraded the deep depression in the Bay of Bengal to a cyclonic storm and named it Nisha. Over 180 people were killed in Tamil Nadu alone due to heavy rain and floods caused by the cyclone. Orathanadu, in Thanjavur District in Tamil Nadu received over 990 mm of rain within 24 hours. The total amount of rainfall received from Nisha was about 1280 mm. The damage caused by the cyclone was estimated to be about 3789 crores.