“It has survived many storms and cyclones in the past but couldn’t stand Amphan,” a Twitter user wrote. “Pls talk about it. Make noise. We’re at a loss.”
A reportedly 275-years old great Banyan Tree situated in Howrah’s Botanical Gardens succumbed to the wrath of Amphan, with tips telling the tree has received some severe damages.
Kolkata and Howrah are among the worst-hit cities of West Bengal after super Cyclone Amphan ravaged Bengal, Odhisa, and Bangladesh in the past two days.
Kolkata’s Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee told she encounter a ‘war-like’ scenario in the aftermath of the storm, referring to the widespread damages of life and property the city has endured.
“Ppl paid to visit it & watch its glory. It has too many memories with all generations,” someone wrote, sharing uprooted images of the iconic tree.
Parveen Kasawan, an Indian Forest Service officer shared a former image of the tree (supposedly from 2017) on Twitter writing the tree used to be the “world’s widest tree with 3300 aerial roots spread in 156000 sq feet area.”
However, following the storm the tree has endured substantial damage. “Cyclone Amphan hit it hard & now it is no more ‘tree with the biggest canopy,” Kasawn stated.
However, there’s still no official confirmation regarding the tree’s world status, yet. The Great Banyan Tree’s canopy is so huge, when looked from a distance it seems more aptly like a forest, than a single standing tree with ariel roots.
According to reports, Amphan hit the nearly 300-years old relic, and uprooted its props in the northwestern corner, leaving a gaping hole. The tree stands over 4.67 acres. The Great Banyan Tree reportedly lost it’s main-trunk to cyclones back in 1864 and 1867.
The Kolkata Botanic Garden
Kolkata’s Botanical Garden also called Indian Botanic Garden is located in Shibpur, Howrah. Spread over 190-hectares, the garden harbors an amazing collection of 12,000 specimens.
“Cyclone Amphan has totally devastated the botanic garden. A huge number of trees in almost all the divisions have either been uprooted or broken…. It will take at least four to five days to assess the loss,” the Garden’s director Kanak Das told Telegraph India.
(Image courtesy of Parveen Kaswan via Twitter)