Super cyclone SIDR made landfall in Bangladesh Thursday night leaving a deadly trail as it worked its way north east towards the Himalayas. With almost a thousand casualties counted so by Saturday morning this has been a tragedy for many in Bangladesh.
When another cyclone hit Bangladesh in 1991 the death toll stood at about 140.000. SIDR is reported to have been at least as fierce as the cyclone in 1991. In the midst of tragedy we therefore also rejoice that Bangladesh this time was much better prepared and able to reduce the impact. Cyclones will pass over Bangladesh in the future again; Bangladesh is strong and prepared. I often get asked this question by visitors ‘Is the development work making any difference in Bangladesh?’ The preparedness for this storm, and the relatively low impact of SIDR, is a sign that yes in Bangladesh it is not just the same old story.