A powerful storm accompanied with very damaging hail hit parts of central and southern India over the past couple of days, destroying more than 125 000 hectares (309 000 acres) of crops and killing several people. Such powerful storms are not usual for this region at this time of year.
The worst affected was Maharashtra where a 30- to 90-minute long hailstorm killed three people, injured at least 2 and severely damaged crops like wheat, corn, onion, orange, banana and grapes.
Pandurang Phundkar, Agriculture Minister of Maharashtra, said in a statement that rain and hailstorms over Saturday and Sunday, February 10 and 11 have affected 1 086 villages in 11 districts of the State. Buldhana, Amravati and Jalna are the districts that have suffered maximum damage.