November 12 Bhola cyclone: A day of horror
Fifty-two years ago today, a terrible cyclone and the resultant tidal surges claimed the lives of nearly 500,000 people in the country's coastal districts, including Bhola, and caused extensive damage.
Many of the victims still have terrible memories of that day. Some people, who lost their relatives, are overwhelmed with grief.
To mark the day, differing organisations have drawn up programmes, including discussions, seminars, Quran Khawni and Milad Mahfils.
The 1970 cyclone was the deadliest natural disaster to have hit the subcontinent in terms of the number of people killed.
The cyclone hit the Bangladesh coast at a maximum speed of 185 kilometres per hour, killing over one lakh people in Bhola alone.
It was drizzling since Wednesday morning (on November 11, 1970). The following day, the weather started turning for the worse. Around midnight, the sea became rough.
At one stage, high waves surged towards the localities. The storm washed away people, cattle, houses and standing crops among many other things.
Bodies were everywhere in turbulent waters of the Meghna and its tributaries. The entire Bhola was ravaged by the storm. There were so many bodies in the rivers that the local administration had to ban fishing.
The World Meteorological Organization has described the 1970 cyclone as the deadliest one in the history of the world.