Live updates: Cyclone Amphan bears millions of people in India and Bangladesh

Live updates: Cyclone Amphan bears millions of people in India and Bangladesh
A volunteer uses a megaphone to urge residents to evacuate into shelters ahead of the expected arrival of Cyclone Amphan in Khulna, Bangladesh on May 19. Kazi Shanto / AFP / Getty Images

Cyclone Amphan arrives in both India and Bangladesh struggles to carry local coronavirus outbreaks under control.

India passed more than 100,000 confirmed infections on Monday, according to Johns Hopkins University, recording its one-day peak but with a total of 5,242 new cases.

Meanwhile, the Bangladesh infection count is rising rapidly, with over 1,300 new cases Sunday, its largest increase so far. In total, the country has recorded 25,121 confirmed infections, according to Johns Hopkins.

Two catastrophes simultaneously: Addressing both disasters simultaneously will be a challenge for the two governments, especially if they attempt to maintain social distances in evacuation centers and emergency shelters.

“(All NDRF workers) must be masked, everyone must wear a visor, gloves … It is almost certain that they will do a rescue job in red (heavily infected) areas … They could actually save people who are already infected. It’s a double challenge, “said Satya Narayan Pradhan, director general of the National Disaster Relief Force (NDRF) of India.

Pradeep Jena, special emergency commissioner of the Indian state of Odisha, said that emergency services must balance saving the lives of the cyclone with saving the lives of the coronavirus.

“We have to find a balance between the two and evacuate people wherever it is extremely essential, otherwise people are better off in their homes,” he said.

Jena said in the evacuation centers that they were trying to keep older women and pregnant women separate from the rest of the population and were working hard to get adequate soap for the shelters.

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“Social distancing is definitely a great concept, but applying it as rigorously as possible in a disaster situation may not always be possible,” he said.

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