As severe cyclonic storm Vayu inches closer towards the Gujarat coast, the Home Ministry on Tuesday reviewed preparations while authorities have deployed NDRF personnel, rescue officials and teams of the Indian Army has been put on standby.
Cyclone Vayu has moved further north over east-central Arabian Sea on Wednesday morning and lay centred over the Arabian Sea, about 450 km west-northwest of Goa and 290 km south-southwest of Mumbai.
GUJARAT & DIU
Cyclone Vayu is likely to move further northwards and cross Gujarat coast between Porbandar and Mahuva around Veraval and Diu region and intensify into a very severe cyclonic storm with wind speed 140-150 kmph to 165 kmph.
The cyclonic storm is expected to hit the Gujarat coast on June 13 (Thursday).
Bracing for the impact of the high speed wind, Gujarat and Diu authorities have already planned to evacuate about three lakh people from identified vulnerable areas. The evacuation will start on Wednesday morning. People will be shifted to around 700 cyclone and relief shelters.
The National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) has pre-positioned 39 NDRF teams, comprising about 45 rescuers each, in Gujarat and Diu and they are equipped with boats, tree-cutters and telecom equipment. As many as 34 teams of Army are also on standby.
The Indian Air Force (IAF) has deployed a C-17 transporter aircraft to carry out Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Response (HADR) operations.
Union Home Minister Amit Shah has reviewed the preparedness in the region while his ministry has issued detailed advisories to Gujarat and Union Territory Diu, asking authorities to take all precautionary measures so as to ensure that no human life is lost, damage to vital infrastructure is minimised and there is early recovery of all essential services post-cyclone landfall.
On Wednesday morning, the severe Cyclone Vayu was passing parallel to the Mumbai coast. The cyclone won’t have any severe affect on Mumbai but the city is likely to receive heavy rainfall. Konkan is is also expected to receive heavy to very heavy rainfall.
The Mumbai IMD said that cyclone is at a distance of 250 to 300km from Mumbai coast but its speed will be the highest on Wednesday morning and therefore, Mumbai, Konkan, Thane and Palghar will receive heavy rainfall. The speed of Cyclone Vayu in the morning was recorded at 135kmph and gusting speed at 150kmph. It is likely to intensify into an extremely severe storm.
KS Hosilkar deputy director general of IMD Mumbai said the cyclone will reach Mumbai by late evening and it won’t have a severe effect but bring rainfall and windy effect.
Meanwhile, Mumbai Police, Coast Guard and Indian Navy are on alert in Mumbai. All fishermen have been called back from the sea. Announcements are being made at coastal areas advising people to not venture into the sea.