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Cyclone Mandous kills at least four in southern India

A cyclonic storm has killed at least four people in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu, the top state official said, as heavy rain and strong winds buffeted several districts damaging property and causing power outages.

Cyclone Mandous, which made landfall late Friday night on Saturday, damaged 185 houses and huts, Tamil Nadu’s chief minister, Muthuvel Karunanidhi Stalin, told reporters. The storm uprooted 400 trees in the state capital Chennai, a hub for automakers and technology firms.

Nearly 25,000 people, including disaster relief personnel, were involved in the relief work, and more than 9,000 people were moved to safety in 201 relief camps, Stalin said.

“We are still assessing damages,” he told reporters, as he visited some of the affected areas.

Mandous had weakened from an earlier severe category as it swept past Sri Lanka, where schools were closed on Friday due to high air pollution levels from the storm.

It was expected to gradually weaken into a low-pressure area, India’s meteorological department tweeted on Saturday. 

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