Cyclone Gaja alert sounded in Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Puducherry
The IMD predicted the cyclone was likely to move towards northern Tamil Nadu and southern Andhra Pradesh coasts by Tuesday.Updated: Nov 12, 2018 01:03 IST
Authorities on Sunday warned fishermen against venturing into the Bay of Bengal until Thursday and asked those in the mid-sea to return to shores as the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) issued a cyclone red alert for Tamil Nadu, Puducherry, and Andhra Pradesh.
Cyclone Titli had earlier made landfall on October 11 and left 62 people dead in Odisha.
The IMD said the cyclone Gaja was approaching coastal Tamil Nadu (east-northeast of Chennai) and east-southeast of Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh. It said the cyclonic storm has moved westwards with a speed of 12 kmph.
The cyclone was centered about 460 km northwest of Port Blair (Andaman Islands), 930 km northeast of Chennai (Tamil Nadu) and 980 km southeast of Sriharikota (Andhra Pradesh) on Sunday.
“It is very likely to intensify further into a severe cyclonic storm during the next 24 hours,” an IMD bulletin said.
“There will be a cyclonic storm, which may not be of severe intensity. So, fishermen in these states have been asked to stay away from the sea till November 15,” said IMD meteorology director M Mohapatra.
The IMD predicted the cyclone was likely to move towards northern Tamil Nadu and southern Andhra Pradesh coasts by Tuesday.
“Therefore, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, and Puducherry will receive heavy to very heavy rainfall on November 14 (Wednesday), which will not be less than 20 cm. The cyclone with speeds of 80-90 kmph gusting to 110 kmph winds is likely to travel along north Tamil Nadu and southern Andhra Pradesh coasts,” the IMD said.
It added that there will be heavy rain at isolated places in Kerala on November 15 as well.
The cyclone is likely to weaken gradually by Thursday.
Tamil Nadu’s fisheries department warned the Bay of Bengal would be rough for the next two to three days and asked fishermen not to venture into the sea until the next announcement.
“As we have received the alert from the IMD, we have stopped issuing passes to the fishermen for sailing into the sea…,” said Tamil Nadu’s fisheries department (Nagapattinam) regional director Amal Xavier. Ports like Ennore, Cuddalore, Karaikal, and Nagapattinam have issued cyclone warning signals.
Tamil Nadu’s revenue administration director, Satyagopal Rao, said the government has made necessary arrangements to address the cyclone and its impact.
“People need not worry about the Gaja cyclone. We have informed district administrations to issue advisories to the public to avert any calamity. We have also sent information to the fishermen, who are in the mid-sea urging them to return to shores.”
Tamil Nadu’s chief secretary Girija Vaidyanathan would chair a meeting at the state secretariat on Monday to discuss the measures to be taken in dealing with the cyclone.
The IMD separately said an induced cyclonic circulation was likely to develop over central Pakistan and adjoining west Rajasthan and would lead to heavy rain or snow in Jammu and Kashmir and Himachal Pradesh on November 13 and 14.
First Published: Nov 11, 2018 23:21 IST