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Home >News >India >Cyclone Tauktae may intensify into 'very severe' storm by Sunday; PM reviews preparedness

The cyclonic storm is very likely to intensify further into a "very severe cyclonic storm" by late Saturday night, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) said, adding it was very likely to move north-northwestwards and cross Gujarat coast between Porbandar and Naliya around May 18.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Narendra Modi took a high-level meeting today to review the preparedness of States and Central Ministries/Agencies concerned to deal with the situation arising out of Cyclone ‘Tauktae’.

The National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) is assisting the State agencies in their preparedness for evacuating people from vulnerable locations.

Mumbai to transfer 580 COVID patients from jumbo centres

Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai says it will transfer 580 COVID patients from jumbo centres to other hospitals in safe places as a precautionary measure tonight, in view of Cyclone Tauktae.

JNPT suspends inward shipping movement amid cyclone threat

Country's premier container port JNPT on Saturday said it has planned to sail out all the vessels at berth by 23.00 pm on May 15 while all inward shipping movements will remain suspended till easing of weather conditions as part of various mitigating following a cyclone warning. The Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust, in a release, also said it has opened a control room for three days, starting May 15.

Western Railways cancels trains

Western Railways has cancelled/short terminated some trains due to the cyclone warning in coastal Gujarat region on May 17 & May 18.

Karnataka takes precautionary measures

Cyclone Tauktae will reach the state's three coastal districts by Saturday night and the administration is prepared to tackle the situation and to carry out relief and rescue operations, two senior Karnataka Ministers have said.

Speaking to reporters after the meeting with the state disaster management team and officials, state's Home Minister Basavaraj Bommai said that authorities have taken several precautionary measures and the Revenue Minister has given required instructions to Deputy Commissioners of the coastal districts.

"District administrations and police departments are on alert. NDRF and SDRF teams are also on alert to face the situation and come to the rescue of people," he said adding NDRF teams are in Mangaluru and Kodagu and SDRF team is in Udupi.

IAF gears up

The Indian Air Force (IAF) has kept 16 transport aircraft and 18 helicopters operation ready in peninsular India as a preparation for the Cyclone Tauktae.

The cyclone is expected to cause very heavy to extremely heavy rainfall along the western coast of India in the next few days.

The official press statement said, "The IAF COVID relief operations have been focused in these coastal areas for the coming few days, as bad weather is likely to affect air operations later. The cyclone relief operations are in addition to those underway for COVID relief."

Moving towards Gujarat

Cyclonic storm Tauktae has intensified and is heading towards the coast of Gujarat and the Union Territory of Daman and Diu and Dadra and Nagar Haveli, though it could bring gusty winds and showers to Mumbai, the IMD said on Saturday.

The cyclonic storm is very likely to intensify further into a "very severe cyclonic storm" by late Saturday night, the India Meteorological Department said, adding it was very likely to move north-northwestwards and cross Gujarat coast between Porbandar and Naliya around May 18.

As it would bring very heavy rainfall in that region, cities like Mumbai would not be affected much, the IMD added.

There will be strong winds and heavy rainfall at isolated places on May 17 over north Konkan, including Mumbai, the met department said.

PM holds high level meeting

PM Narendra Modi took a high level meeting today to review the preparedness of States and Central Ministries/Agencies concerned to deal with the situation arising out of Cyclone ‘Tauktae’.

It was discussed that Cabinet Secretary is in continuous touch with Chief Secretaries of all the Coastal States and Central Ministries/ Agencies concerned, the PMO said.

Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) is reviewing the situation 24*7 and is in touch with the State Governments/ UTs and the Central Agencies concerned. MHA has already released first instalment of SDRF in advance to all States. NDRF has pre-positioned 42 teams which are equipped with boats, tree-cutters, telecom equipments etc. in six States and has kept 26 teams on standby,.

Cyclone Tauktae hits Karnataka coast

Cyclone Tauktae has hit the Karnataka coast, said the state's Home Minister Basavaraj Bommai. He said that two NDRF teams are there and they are also deploying three SDRF teams. 1000 people will be working round the clock in three coastal districts of Karnataka, he added.

Cyclonic storm to become 'very severe'

The cyclonic storm Tauktae is expected to become a 'severe cyclonic storm' within the next 12 hours and a 'very severe cyclonic storm' by Sunday, said K Santhosh, Director (Thiruvananthapuram), India Meteorological Department (IMD) on Saturday.

"Within the next 12 hours cyclone Tauktae is expected to become a 'severe cyclonic storm' and by Sunday it is expected to become a 'very severe cyclonic storm' while moving north westward to the Gujarat coast. By May 18 it is expected to cross Gujarat by evening," Santhosh said.

The IMD director said, the cyclonic storm Tauktae in the Arabian sea is moving away from the Kerala coast and is now approaching the Karnataka coast.

Airports' precautionary measures

Airports are taking all precautions in view of Cyclone Tauktae approaching Western Coast, said the Ministry of Civil Aviation.

Keeping safety in mind and to minimize damage to the airport infrastructure, airports are advised to plan as per as per the SoP & guidelines. To safeguard the Airport Infrastructures, precautionary measures as per check lists for Pre-Cyclone and Post-Cyclone are being ensured by concerned airports, the ministry said.

Lakshadweep flight operations suspended

Flight operations at Lakshadweep's Agatti airport have been suspended at least till 16 May as Cyclone Tauktae approaches the western coast of the country, state-run Airports Authority of India (AAI) said on Saturday.

"The airport will be made operational as and when the cyclone passes the area," it said in a statement, adding that the senior management was monitoring the situation at the other airports though nothing adverse has been reported yet.

Karnataka chairs emergency meeting

Karnataka Home Minister Basavaraj Bommai and Revenue Minister R Ashoka chaired an emergency meeting with officials of Karnataka State Disaster Management Authority in Bengaluru over cyclone Tauktae

Gujarat braces for the cyclone

In view of IMD's warning about Cyclone Tauktae, Gujarat has geared up adequately to ensure there is no casualty and set up a control room, Chief Minister Vijay Rupani said on Saturday. Rupani said teams of the NDRF (National Disaster Response Force) will be deployed.

"The state government has made full preparations and a control room has been set up. Administrations of the districts in Saurashtra and south Gujarat regions, which are likely to be affected by the cyclone, have been alerted. Teams of the NDRF are reaching the state, and they will be deployed," Rupani told reporters in Palanpur in Banaskantha district.

"Gujarat is fully prepared. We are working with the concern that there shouldn't be any casualty in the cyclone," the CM added.

Deep depression over Arabian Sea

The deep depression over the Arabian Sea has intensified into cyclonic storm Tauktae and is likely to cross the Gujarat coast between Porbandar and Naliya around May 18, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) said on Saturday.

In a bulletin released at 1:45 PM, the IMD said, "It (Tauktae) is very likely to intensify further into a severe cyclonic storm during the next six hours and into a very severe cyclonic storm during the subsequent 12 hours. It is very likely to move north-northwestwards and cross the Gujarat coast between Porbandar and Naliya around 18th May afternoon/evening."

Rescue measures

The National Disaster Response Force has increased from 53 to 100 the number of teams earmarked to undertake relief and rescue measures in the wake of impending Cyclone Tauktae, a senior officer said on Saturday.

The force's Director General, S N Pradhan, said in a tweet that these teams are being mobilised for deployment in the coastal regions of Kerala, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Gujarat, Goa and Maharashtra.

AAI review meeting

Airports Authority of India (AAI) has said there is no immediate plan to shut airports in the wake of cyclone Tauktae as there is no clarity about areas that will be "most affected" due to the natural disaster, reported news agency ANI.

"Right now it is not clear that which area will be most affected due to the cyclone. We do not have a plan to shut the airports as of now," an official said.

A high-level operational review meeting of the AAI is underway with senior officials over the situation.

Cyclonic storm

The India Meteorological Department (IMD) said on Saturday morning that the cyclone, currently centred over Lakshadweep, intensified into a cyclonic storm.

Flood warning

As cyclone Tauktae furthers closer into the Indian West Coast, the Central Water Commission (CWC) on Saturday issued an 'orange bulletin' for Kerala and Tamil Nadu, predicting a severe flood situation in the two states.

Water levels are likely to reach 'danger' and highest flood levels, the CWC said.

As of 8 am on Saturday morning, rivers Manimala, Achankovil in Kerala and Kodaiyar in Tamil Nadu continued flowing in 'Severe situation', all three above their danger levels.

PM Modi to review situation

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will hold a meeting to review preparations against the upcoming cyclone Tauktae. Senior officials from the government and National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) will be present at the meeting.

Rahul Gandhi appeals for assistance

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Saturday appealed to Congress workers to provide all possible assistance to all those in need in the wake of Cyclone Tauktae.

"#CycloneAlert has been issued in Kerala, Maharashtra, Goa, Tamil Nadu, Gujarat and Karnataka. Cyclone Tauktae is already causing heavy rains in many areas. I appeal to Congress workers to provide all possible assistance to those in need. Please stay safe," the Wayanad MP tweeted.

Deep depression

On Friday night, the India Meteorological Department had informed that the low-pressure area over the Arabian Sea near Lakshwadeep had intensified into a deep depression and will intensify into a cyclonic storm in the following 12 hours.

"Deep Depression intensified into a Cyclonic Storm "Tauktae" (pronounced as Tau'Te) over Lakshadweep area and adjoining southeast and east-central the Arabian Sea: Cyclone watch for south Gujarat and Diu coasts", the IMD had tweeted.

States to be impacted

The cyclone is likely to impact areas including the coast of Kerala, Karnataka, Lakshadweep, Goa, and Maharashtra.

The IMD had also predicted that the cyclone would hit the Gujarat coast by May 18 morning.

"Deep Depression over Lakshadweep area and adjoining southeast and east-central Arabian Sea about 55 km north-northwest of Amini Divi. To intensify into a Cyclonic Storm during the next 12 hours. To move north-northwestwards and reach near Gujarat coast by 18th May morning", tweeted the IMD.

National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) officials had assured on Friday that they were well prepared for cyclone Tauktae and 53 teams had been committed, 24 teams pre-deployed, and 29 teams were on standby-ready for the 5 most vulnerable states.

Advisory in Kerala districts

Five districts in Kerala had been put under red alert by the IMD on Friday-Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam, Pathanamthitta, Alappuzha and Ernakulam.

"According to the IMD, the low-pressure area in the south-eastern Arabian Sea has intensified into a severe depression. Even though Kerala is not in the predicted path of the cyclone, heavy rains, strong winds and strong sea gusts are expected in the State till May 16," Vijayan said in a press briefing.

He further said that nine teams of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) have been deployed as a precaution.

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