Amphan Super Cyclone :Fresh alert for Bengal, Odisha; landfall on Wednesday
The eastern coastal states of West Bengal and Odisha are bracing for Cyclone Amphan, which is expected to make the landfall on Wednesday.
Amphan turned into a Super Cyclone, the first over the Bay of Bengal in two decades, packing in winds gusting at a speed of nearly 200 kmph. The Odisha government has said that it is prepared to evacuate 11 lakh to 12 lakh people.
Here are the latest developments as the cyclone approaches:
1. Cyclone Amphan stood about 600 km south of Paradip (Odisha) and 750 km south-southwest of Digha (West Bengal) at 11.30 pm on Monday, the India Meteorological Department said.
2. Amphan is expected to make the landfall between Digha in West Bengal and Hatiya Islands in Bangladesh on Wednesday evening.
3. In a fresh alert for Odisha and West Bengal, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) on Tuesday morning said that it is likely to move towards West Bengal and weaken into an extremely severe cyclonic storm.
4. Union Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla spoke to Chief Secretaries of West Bengal and Odisha on Monday in view of arrangements and preparedness against the Super Cyclone.
5. The National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) has deployed 37 teams in the coastal areas of the two states, its chief S N Pradhan said.
6. Prime Minister Narendra Modi reviewed the situation with Union Home Minister Amit Shah and top government officials in New Delhi on Monday.
7. The super cyclonic storm is moving at a speed of seven kmph, said the IMD. Jagatsinghpur, Kendrapara, Bhadrak and Balasore in Odisha are likely to experience heavy rainfall accompanied by high-velocity winds, particularly on May 19 and 20, it added.
8. Disruption of rail and road link are likely at several places but that will not have a major impact on human lives as only skeletal traffic ply the roads and railway tracks due to the Covid-19 lockdown.
9. The IMD has issued an orange alert for coastal West Bengal and Odisha, where it said widespread damage is expected.
10. Cyclone Amphan is only the second super cyclone over the Bay of Bengal after the one that savaged Odisha in 1999, claiming nearly 10,000 lives.