Union Cabinet Secretary Rajiv Gauba on Friday reviewed the preparedness of Central ministries, agencies and state governments to deal with the situation arising out of Cyclone Sitrang developing in the Bay of Bengal during the National Crisis Management Committee (NCMC) meeting.
Reviewing the preparedness measures of the states and Central agencies, Gauba stressed that all preventive and precautionary measures should be taken by the concerned authorities of the state governments and concerned agencies of the Centre, before the cyclonic storm makes landfall, as the aim should be to keep the loss of lives to near zero and minimize damage to property and infrastructure.
According to the Meteorological Department reports, a low-pressure area has formed over the north Andaman Sea and adjoining areas of the south Andaman Sea and Southeast Bay of Bengal.
"The low-pressure area formed over the north Andaman Sea is expected to move west-northwestwards and concentrate into a depression over east-central and adjoining the southeast Bay of Bengal on October 22nd, then into a deep depression on October 23," IMD report said.
Subsequently, by October 24, it is pretty likely to recurve northwards and build into a cyclonic storm over the west-central and neighbouring east-central Bay of Bengal. Following that, it is expected to move steadily north-northeastward, avoiding the Odisha coast and arriving near the West Bengal - Bangladesh coasts on October 25.
"The Director General of India Meteorological Department (IMD), briefed the Committee about the current status of the weather system in the Bay of Bengal, which is likely to move Northwards and intensify into a Cyclonic Storm on 24th October. Thereafter it is likely to move North Eastwards and reach the West Bengal - Bangladesh coasts on 25th October, skirting the Odisha Coast. It is likely to cross Bangladesh and adjoining West Bengal Coasts around the midnight of 25th October," Cabinet Secretariat said in a statement.
The Chief Secretaries of, Odisha and West Bengal and Andaman and Nicobar Islands and the Spl. The Chief Secretary of Andhra Pradesh apprised the Committee of the preparatory measures being taken to protect the population in the expected path of the cyclonic storm and measures being taken by the local administration. Fishermen out at sea have been alerted to return back and others not to venture into the sea.
"The NDRF has made its teams available to the States and additional teams are also being kept in readiness. Rescue and relief teams of the Army and Navy along with ships and aircrafts have been kept ready on standby," the statement read.
"The aim should be to keep loss of lives to zero and minimize damage to property and infrastructure such as power and telecom, and in case of damage to this infrastructure, it must be restored in the shortest possible time," Gauba said.
The meeting was attended by the Chief Secretaries of Odisha, West Bengal and the Andaman and Nicobar Islands and the Spl. Chief Secretary of Andhra Pradesh, Secretaries of Ministries of Home Affairs, Power and representatives of Department of Telecom, Member Secretary NDMA, CISC IDS, DG NDRF, DG IMD, DG Coast Guard and senior officers from the Ministry of Home Affairs.
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First Published: Oct 22 2022 | 10:20 AM IST