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Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Ensure timely evacuation: PM reviews cyclone preparations

Prime Minister Modi directed senior officers to work in close co-ordination with states to ensure safe evacuation of people from high-risk areas, and instructed departments to evacuate those involved in offshore activities.

By: Express News Service | New Delhi |
Updated: May 24, 2021 4:28:49 am
PM Modi addresses a virtual meet to review preparedness to tackle cyclone, in Delhi. (PIB/PTI)

Prime Minister Narendra Modi Sunday met with senior officials to review the preparedness for Cyclone Yaas that is building on the east coast. Prime Minister Modi directed senior officers to work in close co-ordination with states to ensure safe evacuation of people from high-risk areas, and instructed departments to evacuate those working in off shore activities.

IMD officials at the meeting said the Cyclone is set to cross West Bengal and north Odisha coasts by the evening of 26 May with wind speed of 155-185 kmph. The Prime Minister’s meeting comes a day after Cabinet Secretary Rajeev Gauba held a meeting of the National Crisis Management Committee on May 22, with Chief Secretaries of all coastal states and the ministries concerned.

“PM also asked officials to ensure proper co-ordination and planning with state governments to ensure no disruptions in Covid treatment and vaccination in hospitals. He also spoke about the need to involve district administrations in the process of planning and preparedness for better learning from best practices and seamless co-ordination. PM directed officials that advisories and instructions on do’s and dont’s during the cyclone be made available in easy to understand and local language to citizens of the affected districts. PM spoke about the need to involve various stakeholders i.e. coastal communities, industries, etc by directly reaching out to them and sensitising them,” a government press release said.

In the meeting on Saturday, Cabinet Secretary Gauba had similarly stressed that all boats and vessels must return to the shores to ensure zero loss of life, and also emphasized the need to take steps to maintain the generation and movement of oxygen from cyclone affected parts to other parts of the country.

In preparation for the cyclone, the NDRF has positioned 46 teams equipped with boats, tree cutters, telecom equipment in 5 states and Union territories. “In addition, 13 teams are being airlifted today for deployment and 10 teams are on standby”, a government official said.

The Indian Coast Guard and the Navy have deployed ships and helicopters for relief, search and rescue and seven ships with humanitarian assistance and disaster relief units are on standby along the western coast.

“Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas has taken measures to secure all oil installations in the sea and to bring back their shipping vessels to safe harbour. Ministry of Power has activated emergency response systems and is keeping in readiness transformers, DG sets and equipments etc. for immediate restoration of electricity. Ministry of Telecom is keeping all the telecom towers and exchanges under constant watch and is fully geared to restore telecom network. Ministry of Health & Family Welfare has issued advisory to the Sates/ UTs, likely to be affected, for health sector preparedness and response on COVID in affected areas. Ministry of Port, Shipping and Waterways has taken measures to secure all shipping vessels and has deployed emergency vessels (Tugs),” a government official said.

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