Cyclone Thane has been an incredible experience, bringing the best of our capacities and some of our fears and insecurities to the forefront. From the first day the LRM team and individual Aurovilians took the initiative to help clear the roads as fast as possible. At that moment it was agreed by all who were directly involved that this is an Auroville disaster and we have to deal with it as ONE body. We appeal to all to please realize that almost everyone is working very hard to the best of his or her abilities; what is most needed now is more trust in each other and more unity, to remember we are ultimately in Auroville with the same aspirations and working towards the same Dream.
Only preliminary estimates can be made at this stage as we are still receiving information regarding damages and requests for funding. The worst damages, and therefore the largest areas of expenditure, have been to power supply (also effected water supply), housing, farms and the associated crop loss, power and water supply in forest communities, other equipment and repairs for schools and public buildings.
To date we have made an estimate for emergency relief and short term needs only, which comes to about Rs. 439 lakhs. On the other hand, the funds received or pledged so far as donations to the relief efforts are Rs. 61 lakhs. This means we are still Rs. 378 lakhs short to be able to take up the essential work, which doesn’t include the long term rehabilitation needs or loss of productivity in the commercial sector.
It is important to note that at this stage we are seriously short of funds to cover even the minimum expenses. The wood collected from public spaces, unstewarded lands and communities by LRM will partially help close the gap but the material needs a lot of processing and management before it can be sold for any reasonable value. Also, the forest has lost its timber income for the next 7-10 years and will need time and resources to rehabilitate. Though requests have been forwarded to the all levels of the Government of India for support, no financial help has come in.
Estimate for Emergency and Short Term Relief -
Clearing of Roads and Electrical lines
Electrical Restoration and Water Supply
Communities, Schools and Public Spaces
Security (Service and Fencing)
Forests - (Windmill repairs only)
Repairs - (Street lights and other equipment)
New Equipment (Tractors with trailers, Sawmill, Shredders)
TOTAL Estimate for Emergency Relief
DONATIONS (Received or Pledged)
Auroville – Internal
Foreign (not through AVI's) -
Government of India -
Total Donations (Received or pledged)
In Lakhs Rs.