In the wake of ‘Nisarga’ cyclone building over east-central and adjoining southeast Arabian sea, seven districts of Surat, Navsari, Valsad, Dang and Bharuch in south Gujarat, Bhavnagar and Amreli in Saurashtra in addition to Union territory of Daman have been put on high alert.
National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) has deployed 11 teams in Gujarat and one each in Daman and Diu and Dadra and Nagar Haveli along with five teams of State Disaster Response Force (SDRF). More teams that have been put on stand by in nearby areas. All the beaches have been closed to public and fishermen have been asked not to venture out into the sea.
Union Minister of Home Affairs Amit Shah assured all assistance to Gujarat over a video conference with Chief Minister Vijay Rupani on Monday.
As the cyclone is likely to hit on June 3, Rupani has appealed to people of Valsad, Surat, Bharuch, Navsari and Saurashtra’s Bhavnagar and Amreli districts to stay indoors on June 3 and 4.
On Monday, Bhavnagar was hit by a thunderstorm while parts of Amreli district also experienced light showers as overcast conditions and sporadic rainfall activity continued in Saurashtra region on Monday.
Bhavnagar city got 25 millimetre rain as a thunderstorm hit the city late morning. The rain, accompanied by squally winds, uprooted trees in at least 25 places including Shashtrinagar, Fulsar Smasan, Kumbharvada, Ghogha Circle, RTO office, Sidsar, Vaghavadi Road, Rupam Chowk, Kaliyabid.
Water-logging was also reported near railway station. The flood control room of Bhavanagar Municipal Corporation said that a few vehicles were reportedly damaged after tree fell on them near Ghogha circle and a couple of other locations in the city.
Rain continued for the second day in Amreli district. Light showers were reported from Khambha taluka but there were no reports of any untoward incident from anywhere.
Rupani chaired a meeting to take stock of the situation ahead of the cyclone in Gandhinagar on Monday. The CM also reviewed the situation of South and Saurashtra districts through video conference with the respective district collectors.
Fishermen and salt pan workers from low-lying areas have been asked to relocate to safer places before Tuesday noon. Also, during relocation, in order to avoid spread of coronavirus infection, it has been directed to ensure use of masks and social distancing.
Surat district collector Dr Dhaval Patel, in an audio message, said, “There is a possibility that it may convert into a severe cyclone. It has been predicted that different districts in south Gujarat will receive heavy to moderate rainfall and similar will happen on June 4. At present, no fishermen from Surat is in the sea.”
Suvali, Dabhari and Dumas beaches in Surat have been closed immediately and farmers were advised to shift their agriculture produce to sheds to prevent damage.
As per Indian Meteorological Department (IMD), on June 3 winds at a velocity of 90-110 kmph along with heavy rainfall is expected in the low lying areas of districts of south Gujarat including Surat, Navsari, Valsad, Dang and Bharuch along with Saurashtra districts of Bhavnagar and Amreli and Union Territory of Daman.
“The depression over east central and adjoining southeast Arabian sea moved north-northwest with a speed of 13 kmph as on Monday evening. It is very likely to intensify into a deep depression over east central and adjoining southwest Arabian Sea and intensify further into a cyclonic storm over east central Arabian Sea during subsequent 24 hours,” said IMD additional director at Ahmedabad regional centre Manorama Mohanty.
Instructions have been given to ask all fishermen in the sea to return immediately along with a 24×7 control room that has been setup at state and district levels.
These decisions were taken and instructions issued during a meeting of Revenue Minister Kaushikbhai Patel and Chief Secretary Anil Mukim along with senior secretaries of the state government who reviewed the situation with district collectors through video conferencing from the State Emergency Operation Centre (SEOC) in Gandhinagar.
Additional chief secretary revenue Pankaj Kumar stated that all those involved in the relocation and rescue teams have to be equipped with masks, hand sanitisers, PPE kits.
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