Joined: 02 September 2012
Joined: 03 December 2005
She caused controversy last month with a very raunchy performance at the MTV Video Music Awards.
And Miley Cyrus revealed in a new documentary that she wanted to go topless, but the music channel wouldn't let her.
'I tried, but I don't think MTV's going to allow it,' the 20-year-old told Britney Spears in her new documentary Miley: The Movement after the Toxic singer asked, 'You're not going to be topless on stage are you?'
Baring all: Miley Cyrus admitted in a new documentary that she had originally planned to go topless during her now infamous performance at the MTV VMA Awards
The real deal: Miley made the admission as a behind-the-scenes look at a recent topless shoot was shown as part of Miley: The Movement
Miley's comments as a behind-the-scenes look at a revealing shoot in which she went topless was shown on the show.
Posing for the sexy shoot, in which she also went make-up free, Miley insisted she is still being herself, and isn't in some 'transition' phase.
'I'm the same human, I've got the same heart I had five years ago," she said. 'All the things about me are the same " same skin, same human " so it's not a transition.
'I tried': Miley Cyrus tells Britney Spears in a new documentary that MTV wouldn't allow her to go topless for her raunchy VMAs performance
'It's a movement, it's a growth, it's a change,' the 20-year-old said.
She added: 'I'm not really scared or insecure of anything. If you're about to drown, you're going to swim.
'If I can perform in front of 90,000 people there's not much anyone can tell you you can't do. If I can do that I can do anything. There's no other life for me than entertaining. I was born to become who I am right now.'
Pop idols: The pair collaborated on a track on Miley's new album Bangerz
Starstruck: 'Eight-year-old me would have been p***ing [her] pants right now,' she told Britney
Warm welcome: 'You look so cute,' Britney told her as they hugged
'We're in 2013 and I live in America, the land of the free. If you can't express yourself you're not very free', she said.
'I don't pay attention to the negative,' she said. 'You might as well make people talk for two weeks rather than two seconds.
'Yes, I am very comfortable with sexuality and I like pushing the boundaries but I'm coming out in pigtails looking like a giant adult baby but doing really, like, naughty stuff.
'That's obviously funny. If I really wanted to do a raunchy sex show I wouldn't have been dressed like a damned bear.'
'People can think that it was just like a hot mess, but it's a strategic hot mess. Right now I can be exactly who I want to be. I just want to have fun,' she said.
She added: 'I really feel like things have really begun after the VMAs. I feel like people are now getting to see what the movement is all about. 'We've got to be soldiers and marching at the same time, and smiling about it. For me a movement has to be something that, like, represents taking over the world.'
She also opened up about her relationship with her mother Tish.
'My mum is my homey! If I win, then she wins " not because she's my manager, but because she's my mum.
'I think she keeps me, like, less anxious, because I do get so overwhelmed when I'm going to perform, because everything has to be perfect,' she said.
Tish added: 'Anyone that's ever said, 'Where's her mother?' [I've been] right beside her.
'Through good, through bad, through arguments, through crying, through I don't care what - right there.'
'I've never been like a normal person because I had to grow up so quick, ' Miley said.
'She kind of gave up her childhood,' Tish added.
Her rock: She also opened up about her relationship with her mother Tish, calling her 'my homey'
In it together: 'If I win, then she wins " not because she's my manager, but because she's my mum,' said Miley
Little sister Noah made a very brief appearance at the end.
But interestingly there was no sign of dad Billy Ray or now ex fiance Liam Hemsworth in the film.
She was also seen battling a cough as she tried to rehearse for two back to back shows on the opposite coasts of America.
'I am a control freak. I hate being out of control.
'When you can't control yourself and what your body is saying, I can't even let that shut me down,' she said ahead of the Jimmy Kimmel Live show to promote her new record.
Joined: 01 July 2013
J.K. ROWLING, author of the best-selling Harry Potterbook series, delivers her Commencement Address, "The Fringe Benefits of Failure, and the Importance of Imagination," at the Annual Meeting of the Harvard Alumni Association. For more 0n the 2008 Commencement Excercises, read "University Magic."
Text as delivered follows.
Copyright of JK Rowling, June 2008
President Faust, members of the Harvard Corporation and the Board of Overseers, members of the faculty, proud parents, and, above all, graduates.
The first thing I would like to say is thank you.' Not only has Harvard given me an extraordinary honour, but the weeks of fear and nausea I have endured at the thought of giving this commencement address have made me lose weight. A win-win situation! Now all I have to do is take deep breaths, squint at the red banners and convince myself that I am at the world's largest Gryffindor reunion.
Delivering a commencement address is a great responsibility; or so I thought until I cast my mind back to my own graduation. The commencement speaker that day was the distinguished British philosopher Baroness Mary Warnock. Reflecting on her speech has helped me enormously in writing this one, because it turns out that I can't remember a single word she said. This liberating discovery enables me to proceed without any fear that I might inadvertently influence you to abandon promising careers in business, the law or politics for the giddy delights of becoming a gay wizard.
You see? If all you remember in years to come is the gay wizard' joke, I've come out ahead of Baroness Mary Warnock. Achievable goals: the first step to self improvement.
Actually, I have wracked my mind and heart for what I ought to say to you today. I have asked myself what I wish I had known at my own graduation, and what important lessons I have learned in the 21 years that have expired between that day and this.
I have come up with two answers. On this wonderful day when we are gathered together to celebrate your academic success, I have decided to talk to you about the benefits of failure. And as you stand on the threshold of what is sometimes called real life', I want to extol the crucial importance of imagination.
These may seem quixotic or paradoxical choices, but please bear with me.
Looking back at the 21-year-old that I was at graduation, is a slightly uncomfortable experience for the 42-year-old that she has become. Half my lifetime ago, I was striking an uneasy balance between the ambition I had for myself, and what those closest to me expected of me.
I was convinced that the only thing I wanted to do, ever, was to write novels. However, my parents, both of whom came from impoverished backgrounds and neither of whom had been to college, took the view that my overactive imagination was an amusing personal quirk that would never pay a mortgage, or secure a pension. I know that the irony strikes with the force of a cartoon anvil, now.
So they hoped that I would take a vocational degree; I wanted to study English Literature. A compromise was reached that in retrospect satisfied nobody, and I went up to study Modern Languages. Hardly had my parents' car rounded the corner at the end of the road than I ditched German and scuttled off down the Classics corridor.
I cannot remember telling my parents that I was studying Classics; they might well have found out for the first time on graduation day. Of all the subjects on this planet, I think they would have been hard put to name one less useful than Greek mythology when it came to securing the keys to an executive bathroom.
I would like to make it clear, in parenthesis, that I do not blame my parents for their point of view. There is an expiry date on blaming your parents for steering you in the wrong direction; the moment you are old enough to take the wheel, responsibility lies with you. What is more, I cannot criticise my parents for hoping that I would never experience poverty. They had been poor themselves, and I have since been poor, and I quite agree with them that it is not an ennobling experience. Poverty entails fear, and stress, and sometimes depression; it means a thousand petty humiliations and hardships. Climbing out of poverty by your own efforts, that is indeed something on which to pride yourself, but poverty itself is romanticised only by fools.
What I feared most for myself at your age was not poverty, but failure.
At your age, in spite of a distinct lack of motivation at university, where I had spent far too long in the coffee bar writing stories, and far too little time at lectures, I had a knack for passing examinations, and that, for years, had been the measure of success in my life and that of my peers.
I am not dull enough to suppose that because you are young, gifted and well-educated, you have never known hardship or heartbreak. Talent and intelligence never yet inoculated anyone against the caprice of the Fates, and I do not for a moment suppose that everyone here has enjoyed an existence of unruffled privilege and contentment.
However, the fact that you are graduating from Harvard suggests that you are not very well-acquainted with failure. You might be driven by a fear of failure quite as much as a desire for success. Indeed, your conception of failure might not be too far from the average person's idea of success, so high have you already flown.
Ultimately, we all have to decide for ourselves what constitutes failure, but the world is quite eager to give you a set of criteria if you let it. So I think it fair to say that by any conventional measure, a mere seven years after my graduation day, I had failed on an epic scale. An exceptionally short-lived marriage had imploded, and I was jobless, a lone parent, and as poor as it is possible to be in modern Britain, without being homeless. The fears that my parents had had for me, and that I had had for myself, had both come to pass, and by every usual standard, I was the biggest failure I knew.
Now, I am not going to stand here and tell you that failure is fun. That period of my life was a dark one, and I had no idea that there was going to be what the press has since represented as a kind of fairy tale resolution. I had no idea then how far the tunnel extended, and for a long time, any light at the end of it was a hope rather than a reality.
So why do I talk about the benefits of failure? Simply because failure meant a stripping away of the inessential. I stopped pretending to myself that I was anything other than what I was, and began to direct all my energy into finishing the only work that mattered to me. Had I really succeeded at anything else, I might never have found the determination to succeed in the one arena I believed I truly belonged. I was set free, because my greatest fear had been realised, and I was still alive, and I still had a daughter whom I adored, and I had an old typewriter and a big idea. And so rock bottom became the solid foundation on which I rebuilt my life.
You might never fail on the scale I did, but some failure in life is inevitable. It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all - in which case, you fail by default.
Failure gave me an inner security that I had never attained by passing examinations. Failure taught me things about myself that I could have learned no other way. I discovered that I had a strong will, and more discipline than I had suspected; I also found out that I had friends whose value was truly above the price of rubies.
The knowledge that you have emerged wiser and stronger from setbacks means that you are, ever after, secure in your ability to survive. You will never truly know yourself, or the strength of your relationships, until both have been tested by adversity. Such knowledge is a true gift, for all that it is painfully won, and it has been worth more than any qualification I ever earned.
So given a Time Turner, I would tell my 21-year-old self that personal happiness lies in knowing that life is not a check-list of acquisition or achievement. Your qualifications, your CV, are not your life, though you will meet many people of my age and older who confuse the two. Life is difficult, and complicated, and beyond anyone's total control, and the humility to know that will enable you to survive its vicissitudes.
Now you might think that I chose my second theme, the importance of imagination, because of the part it played in rebuilding my life, but that is not wholly so. Though I personally will defend the value of bedtime stories to my last gasp, I have learned to value imagination in a much broader sense. Imagination is not only the uniquely human capacity to envision that which is not, and therefore the fount of all invention and innovation. In its arguably most transformative and revelatory capacity, it is the power that enables us to empathise with humans whose experiences we have never shared.
One of the greatest formative experiences of my life preceded Harry Potter, though it informed much of what I subsequently wrote in those books. This revelation came in the form of one of my earliest day jobs. Though I was sloping off to write stories during my lunch hours, I paid the rent in my early 20s by working at the African research department at Amnesty International's headquarters in London.
There in my little office I read hastily scribbled letters smuggled out of totalitarian regimes by men and women who were risking imprisonment to inform the outside world of what was happening to them. I saw photographs of those who had disappeared without trace, sent to Amnesty by their desperate families and friends. I read the testimony of torture victims and saw pictures of their injuries. I opened handwritten, eye-witness accounts of summary trials and executions, of kidnappings and rapes.
Many of my co-workers were ex-political prisoners, people who had been displaced from their homes, or fled into exile, because they had the temerity to speak against their governments. Visitors to our offices included those who had come to give information, or to try and find out what had happened to those they had left behind.
I shall never forget the African torture victim, a young man no older than I was at the time, who had become mentally ill after all he had endured in his homeland. He trembled uncontrollably as he spoke into a video camera about the brutality inflicted upon him. He was a foot taller than I was, and seemed as fragile as a child. I was given the job of escorting him back to the Underground Station afterwards, and this man whose life had been shattered by cruelty took my hand with exquisite courtesy, and wished me future happiness.
And as long as I live I shall remember walking along an empty corridor and suddenly hearing, from behind a closed door, a scream of pain and horror such as I have never heard since. The door opened, and the researcher poked out her head and told me to run and make a hot drink for the young man sitting with her. She had just had to give him the news that in retaliation for his own outspokenness against his country's regime, his mother had been seized and executed.
Every day of my working week in my early 20s I was reminded how incredibly fortunate I was, to live in a country with a democratically elected government, where legal representation and a public trial were the rights of everyone.
Every day, I saw more evidence about the evils humankind will inflict on their fellow humans, to gain or maintain power. I began to have nightmares, literal nightmares, about some of the things I saw, heard, and read.
And yet I also learned more about human goodness at Amnesty International than I had ever known before.
Amnesty mobilises thousands of people who have never been tortured or imprisoned for their beliefs to act on behalf of those who have. The power of human empathy, leading to collective action, saves lives, and frees prisoners. Ordinary people, whose personal well-being and security are assured, join together in huge numbers to save people they do not know, and will never meet. My small participation in that process was one of the most humbling and inspiring experiences of my life.
Unlike any other creature on this planet, humans can learn and understand, without having experienced. They can think themselves into other people's places.
Of course, this is a power, like my brand of fictional magic, that is morally neutral. One might use such an ability to manipulate, or control, just as much as to understand or sympathise.
And many prefer not to exercise their imaginations at all. They choose to remain comfortably within the bounds of their own experience, never troubling to wonder how it would feel to have been born other than they are. They can refuse to hear screams or to peer inside cages; they can close their minds and hearts to any suffering that does not touch them personally; they can refuse to know.
I might be tempted to envy people who can live that way, except that I do not think they have any fewer nightmares than I do. Choosing to live in narrow spaces leads to a form of mental agoraphobia, and that brings its own terrors. I think the wilfully unimaginative see more monsters. They are often more afraid.
What is more, those who choose not to empathise enable real monsters. For without ever committing an act of outright evil ourselves, we collude with it, through our own apathy.
One of the many things I learned at the end of that Classics corridor down which I ventured at the age of 18, in search of something I could not then define, was this, written by the Greek author Plutarch: What we achieve inwardly will change outer reality.
That is an astonishing statement and yet proven a thousand times every day of our lives. It expresses, in part, our inescapable connection with the outside world, the fact that we touch other people's lives simply by existing.
But how much more are you, Harvard graduates of 2008, likely to touch other people's lives? Your intelligence, your capacity for hard work, the education you have earned and received, give you unique status, and unique responsibilities. Even your nationality sets you apart. The great majority of you belong to the world's only remaining superpower. The way you vote, the way you live, the way you protest, the pressure you bring to bear on your government, has an impact way beyond your borders. That is your privilege, and your burden.
If you choose to use your status and influence to raise your voice on behalf of those who have no voice; if you choose to identify not only with the powerful, but with the powerless; if you retain the ability to imagine yourself into the lives of those who do not have your advantages, then it will not only be your proud families who celebrate your existence, but thousands and millions of people whose reality you have helped change. We do not need magic to change the world, we carry all the power we need inside ourselves already: we have the power to imagine better.
I am nearly finished. I have one last hope for you, which is something that I already had at 21. The friends with whom I sat on graduation day have been my friends for life. They are my children's godparents, the people to whom I've been able to turn in times of trouble, people who have been kind enough not to sue me when I took their names for Death Eaters. At our graduation we were bound by enormous affection, by our shared experience of a time that could never come again, and, of course, by the knowledge that we held certain photographic evidence that would be exceptionally valuable if any of us ran for Prime Minister.
So today, I wish you nothing better than similar friendships. And tomorrow, I hope that even if you remember not a single word of mine, you remember those of Seneca, another of those old Romans I met when I fled down the Classics corridor, in retreat from career ladders, in search of ancient wisdom:
As is a tale, so is life: not how long it is, but how good it is, is what matters.
I wish you all very good lives. Thank you very much.
SRK's speech: Rowling in the deep?
Joined: 03 December 2005
Joined: 03 December 2005
A disturbing photograph of an indigenous woman from Mexico delivering a baby on a patch of grass outside a medical center has set off a firestorm online and sparked a national debate that led to the suspension of the head of the clinic that has turned the mother away.
The shocking image, taken by a passerby, shows 29-year-old Irma Lopez , who is of Mazatec ethnicity, squatting after giving birth, her face contorted in pain and her tiny newborn son still bound by the umbilical cord and lying on the ground.
The government of the southern state of Oaxaca announced Wednesday that it has suspended the health center's director, Dr. Adrian Cruz, while officials conduct state and federal investigations into the October 2 incident.
Scandalous: This disturbing photo of Irma Lopez, 29, squatting in pain outside a Mexican health clinic after giving birth without any help from the staff set off an outrage in the country after appearing on the front page of the tabloid La Razon de Mexico
Mrs Lopez, a married mother of three, said that she and her husband were turned away from the Rural Health Center of the village of San Felipe Jalapa de Diaz by a nurse who said she was only eight months pregnant and still not ready' to deliver, even though the woman was reportedly fully dilated.
The couple, who are Mazatecs and do not speak Spanish, could not understand much of what the nurse was telling them beyond the word no,' so they went outside.
Addressing the controversy later, the nurses blamed the incident on the language barrier and claimed that they did not have enough staff on hand to treat the woman due to a partial work stoppage.
An hour and a half later, at 7.30am, the woman's water broke. Knowing that the time has come, Lopez kneeled on the grass outside the clinic and started pushing while grabbing the wall of a house.
I didn't want to deliver like this. It was so ugly and with so much pain,' she said, adding she was alone for the birth because her husband was trying to persuade the nurse to call for help.
Eloy Pacheco Lopez, who was among a number of people drawn to the site by the mother's screams, took the photo and gave it to a news reporter. It ran in several national newspapers, including the full front page of the tabloid La Razon de Mexico, and was widely circulated on the Internet.
Happy mother: Irma Lopez stands next to her newborn son Salvador at a clinic in the town of Jalapa de Diaz, Mexico, where a health center director was suspended for failing to help her during birth
Pacheco Lpez also shared the image on Facebook, writing that 'after waiting and demanding attention for two hours, she gave birth in the yard of the hospital after being ignored by personnel under the direction of the supposed doctor Adrian Ren Cruz Cabrera,' Latin Times reported.
The case illustrated the shortcomings of maternal care in Mexico, where hundreds of women still die during or right after pregnancy. It also pointed to still persistent discrimination against Mexico's indigenous people persists.
The photo is giving visibility to a wider structural problem that occurs within indigenous communities: Women are not receiving proper care. They are not being offered quality health services, not even a humane treatment,' said Mayra Morales, Oaxaca's representative for the national Network for Sexual and Reproductive Rights.
Lopez said she and her husband walked an hour in the dark to the clinic from the family's one-bedroom hut in the mountains of northern Oaxaca.
It would have taken them longer to get to the nearest highway to catch a ride to a hospital. She said that from the births of her two previous children, she knew she didn't have time for that.
Silvia Flores, the mayor of the town where then now-infamous medical center is located, told the site Clarin that it was the second time in a year that a woman in labor has given birth on the lawn: in July, another indigenous woman delivered a baby on the same grass patch.
The Mexican federal Health Department said this week that it has sent staff to investigate what happened at the Rural Health Center of the village of San Felipe Jalapa de Diaz.
The National Human Rights Commission also began an investigation after seeing news reports.
Nearly one in five women in the state of Oaxaca gave birth in a place that is not a hospital or a clinic in 2011, according to Mexico's census.
Health officials have urged women to go to clinics to deliver their babies, but many women say the operating hours of the rural centers are limited and staffs small.
Growing brood: The 29-year-old mother of three talks to her children as her newborn son Salvador sleeps on her lap at her hut in the town of Jalapa de Diaz, Mexico
Although some have praised Mexico for improving its maternal health care, the mortality rate still stands at about 50 deaths per 100,000 births, according to the World Health Organization, similar to Libya, Barbados and Kazakhstan. The U.S. rate is 16 per 100,000.
Oaxaca is one of Mexico's poorest, most rural states and many women have died of hemorrhaging or preeclampsia - a condition causing high blood pressure and possible organ failure.
The Mexican states with the highest indigenous population have the highest rates of maternal deaths, by a wide margin.
Lopez was taken in by the clinic after giving birth and discharged the same day with prescriptions for medications and products that cost her about $30, she said. Health officials say she and her baby were in good health.
She said that poverty-stricken villagers are used to being forgotten by Mexico's health care system and left to fend off for themselves.
I am naming him Salvador,' said Lopez, a name that means Savior' in English. He really saved himself.'
Joined: 03 December 2005
A powerful super-cyclone is battering the east coast of India after making land earlier yesterday afternoon with more than 600,000 people already evacuated from their homes.
Categorised as 'very severe' by weather forecasters, Cyclone Phailin, is expected to hit Orissa and Andhra Pradesh states the hardest.
The U.S. Navy's Joint Typhoon Warning Center in Hawaii showed maximum sustained winds of about 138mph, with gusts up to 167mph.
Battering: The powerful cyclone Phailin has hit the east coast of India bringing destructive winds and heavy rains
A rickshaw man pedals through heavy rain in Berhampur
A woman walks past a pig during heavy rain in the state of Orissa, which is expected to endure some of the worst damage
The storm is expected to affect 12 million people, most of them in the densely populated states of Orissa and Andhra Pradesh
Villagers enjoy a welcome meal at a temporary cyclone shelter in Orissa
A few hours before it hit land, the eye of the storm collapsed, spreading the hurricane force winds out over a larger area and giving it a 'bigger damage footprint' .
U.S meterologist Jeff Masters, said: 'It's probably a bad thing it was doing this when it made landfall. Much of the housing in India is unable to withstand even a much weaker hurricane.
'This is a remarkably strong storm. It's going to carry hurricane-force winds inland for about 12 hours, which is quite unusual.'
Hurricanes typically lose much of their force when they hit land, where there is less heat-trapping moisture feeding energy into the storm.
As the cyclone swept across the Bay of Bengal toward the Indian coast, satellite images showed its spinning tails covering an area larger than France.
Images appeared to show the storm making landfall early Saturday night near Gopalpur.
A boy struggles to hold on to his umbrella as he moves a herd of cows along a road in Andhra Pradesh
Deluge: People struggle through heavy rain in the Ganjam district of Orissa
Take shelter: People run for cover following a cyclone warning at Gopalpur beach in Orissa, India
A family takes refuge from the fierce winds and heavy rain in a temporary cyclone shelter in Orissa
A mother feeds her youngster with a handful of rice at a shelter in Orissa. Powerful winds have uprooted trees and brought down power lines
Waves slam against the shore as storms from Cyclone Phailin hit Kailasagiri in Visakhapatnam
With some of the world's warmest waters, the Indian Ocean is considered a cyclone hot spot, and some of the deadliest storms in recent history have come through the Bay of Bengal, including a 1999 cyclone that also hit Orissa and killed 10,000 people.
Officials said early reports of deaths from Phailin won't become clear until after daybreak Sunday.
In Behrampur, a town about 10 kilometers (7 miles) inland from where the eye of the storm hit, the sky blackened quickly around the time of landfall, with heavy winds and rains pelting the empty streets.
Window panes shook and shattered against the wind. Outside, objects could be heard smashing into walls.
'My parents have been calling me regularly ... they are worried,' said Hemant Pati, 27, who was holed up in a Behrampur hotel with 15 other people from the coastal town hit first by the storm.
The hotel manager said he would bar the doors against anyone trying to enter, saying there would be food, water and electricity from generators only for guests of the Hotel Jyoti Residency. 'Nobody can come inside, and nobody can go out,' Shaik Nisaruddin said.
Stranded tourists who had come for Orissa's beaches and temples instead roamed the hallways of boarded-up hotels.
'It seemed strange, because it was a beautiful sunny day yesterday,' said Doris Lang of Honolulu, who was with a friend in the seaside temple town of Puri when news of the cyclone's approach reached them.
Route: The cyclone has made its way from the sea and will continue well into the mainland, pictured
A wedding hall is used as a temporary shelter for people fleeing the impact of Cyclone Phailin, in the eastern Indian state of Orissa
Chickens cross a road in a deserted Donkuru coastal village in Srikakulam district
A fisherman stands on the beach in Appughar village near Kailasagiri in Visakhapatnam
A rickshaw puller pedals through heavy rainfall in Ganjam district, Orissa
The state's top official, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, appealed for calm.
'I request everyone to not panic. Please assist the government. Everyone from the village to the state headquarters have been put on alert,' he told reporters.
Surya Narayan Patro, the state's top disaster management official, had said that 'no one will be allowed to stay in mud and thatched houses in the coastal areas' when the storm hits.
By Saturday afternoon, the sea had already pushed inland as much as 40 meters (130 feet) along parts of the coastline.
Officials in both Orissa and Andhra Pradesh have been stockpiling emergency food supplies and setting up shelters. The Indian military has put some of its forces on alert, and has trucks, transport planes and helicopters at the ready for relief operations.
The evacuated people have been taken to specially-built cyclone camps in the two states.
There are more than 500 such shelters that have been set up - each cyclone shelter can accommodate at least 1,500 people. Agencies swung into action a day before the anticipated landfall that eventually happened at around 9 pm on Saturday.
The storm is expected to cause large-scale power and communications outages and shut down road and rail links, officials said. It's also expected to cause extensive damage to crops.
Storm: Cyclone Phailin has made land on India's east coast with winds being measured at up to 167mph
Men wearing motorcycle helmets walk along the shore in Orissa. The storm made landfall near the coastal town of Gopalpur
Evacuation: A woman carries her baby as she moves to a safer place with others members of the Donkuru village in the state of Andhra Pradesh
Waves crash on the Bengal coast in Vishakhapatnam. Categorised as 'very severe' by weather forecasters, Cyclone Phailin, is expected to hit Orissa and Andhra Pradesh states the hardest
The Meteorological Department predicted winds up to 136mph, with initial reports suggesting 125mph have already hit the coast
A shepherd holds on to his umbrella as he stands with his flock in Andhra Pradesh. The cyclone threatens to cut a wide swathe of devastation through farmland and fishing hamlets
In the port city of Paradip - which was hammered in the 1999 cyclone, also in October - at least seven ships were moved out to sea to ride out the storm, with other boats shifted to safer parts of the harbor, officials said.
U.S. forecasters had repeatedly warned that Phailin would be immense.
'If it's not a record, it's really, really close,' University of Miami hurricane researcher Brian McNoldy told The Associated Press. 'You really don't get storms stronger than this anywhere in the world ever.'
To compare it to killer U.S. storms, McNoldy said Phailin is nearly the size of Hurricane Katrina, which killed 1,200 people in 2005 and caused devastating flooding in New Orleans, but also has the wind power of 1992's Hurricane Andrew, which packed 265 kph (165 mph) winds at landfall in Miami.
A man wraps himself in a plastic sheet as he heads for safety in Donkuru village in the Srikakulam district of Andhra Pradesh
Joined: 03 December 2005
Joined: 28 February 2009
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