As they waded through the waters, the scenes they witnessed grew more and more macabre. They had to push away many human bodies — men, women, children — and carcasses of dogs, goats and cattle that the current swept against them as they moved ahead. In every village that they passed, they could barely see a house standing. Prashant now wept out loud and long. He was sure that his family could not have survived this catastrophe.
Eventually, Prashant reached his village, Kalikuda. His heart went cold. Where their home once stood, there were only remnants of its roof. Some of their belongings were caught, mangled and twisted in the branches of trees just visible above the dark waters. Young Prashant decided to go to the Red Cross shelter to look for his family.
Prashant and the other two members had witnessed more horrifying scenes as they swam through the floodwater. It was because the dead bodies of humans and animals that died in the floods, including men, women, and children, as well as the carcasses of dogs, goats, and cattle, remained afloat in the river. Prashant and his team had to push the dead bodies of humans and animals away from the water to move ahead.
Prashant's heart grew heavier as he witnessed such terrible scenes, not only because he grieved the deaths of people who had died but also because he was worried about the status of his family members. In every village they passed through, the majority of the houses were submerged in water. It made Prashant cry since he feared his family would not have survived such a catastrophe. He made it to his village of Kalikuda after a long struggle. When he saw the wreckage of his home, he went numb. Their belongings were scattered about in the floodwaters, and some were suspended from tree branches just above the floodwaters. He decided to look for his family at the Red Cross shelter.
The mission of the Red Cross Society is to provide disaster/emergency relief and promote the health and welfare of those in need. It has almost 700 branches across India. In common with other worldwide Red Cross groups, the Society's symbol is a red cross.
Red Cross Symbol
The location of Orissa near the Bay of Bengal makes it vulnerable to the deadly cyclones that periodically sweep up from the south from May to November. As mentioned earlier, over \(10,000\) people died in the cyclone and over a million animals were lost and, \(7\) million people were left homeless.
Meaning of difficult words:
|Wade||To walk through water|
|Witness||To see something happening|
|Remnant||A small piece of something that is left from a original piece|
|Catastrophe||A sudden event that causes great destruction|
|Macabre||Unpleasant and strange because connected with death and frightening things|
- National Council of Educational Research and Training (2006). Beehive. Weathering the storm in Ersama - Hasrh Mander (pp.37-42). Published at the Publication Division by the Secretary, National Council of Educational Research and Training, Sri Aurobindo Marg, New Delhi.