The cyclone Amphan, which is scheduled to make a landfall between West Bengal’s Digha and Bangladesh’s Hatiya on Wednesday afternoon, has already initiated massive storms, and rainfall in areas of Northern Odisha and Bengal.
The super-cyclonic storm is said to be the most intense and strongest cyclone over the Bay of Bengal in the 21st century and the joint-most intense cyclonic storm this year, along with the Cyclone Harold that formed over the South Pacific in April. The landfall is expected to bring winds at the speed of over 265 mph.
As per the latest data released by the Indian Meteorological Department, the Cyclone Amphan is presently about 120 km away from the Odisha port city of Paradip, 240 km South of Digha and 395 km southwest of Khepupara.
Over 5 lakh people evacuated in Bengal and Odisha
Coastal regions in Odisha, and Bengal have been facing strong winds and heavy rainfall since yesterday.
Huge storm surge witnessed in Digha (West Bengal) ahead of the landfall of #CycloneAmphan between its coast & Hatiya Islands (Bangladesh) later today.— OTV (@otvnews) May 20, 2020
OTV's @dasrasmi_z reports live from the seaside resort town#AmphanUpdates pic.twitter.com/lOXPRCvaFv
41 NDRF teams have been deployed in 7 districts of West Bengal and 6 districts of Odisha. West Bengal has evacuated over 4 lakh people from coastal regions while Odisha has evacuated over 1.1 lakh people.
While the main impact of the super cyclone is yet to be felt, severe winds and rain has already caused damage in coastal areas. Trees have been uprooted in Odisha’s Bhadrak district and Digha has been witnessing very high tides.
Odisha: Fire Services team clearing road blockage near R&B office in Bhadrak to facilitate the movement of vehicles, essential commodities, and emergency service personnel. #CycloneAmphan pic.twitter.com/jE2P9eAtqz— ANI (@ANI) May 20, 2020
Exactly a year after cyclone Fani
It is notable here that exactly a year ago, the Odisha coast was hit by another severe cyclonic storm Fani. Though the effective disaster management steps undertaken by the state and central government had ensured minimal casualties, the loss of property, agriculture and businesses had been extensive.
The 1999 super cyclone that had hit Odisha coast remains till date the strongest cyclonic storm. It had taken hundreds of lives and had battered the state of Odisha. It was the strongest cyclone not just in Bay of Bengal, but in the entire North Indian Ocean region.
PM chaired a meeting to review response measures
As Cyclone Amphan intensified into a super cyclone, a high-level meeting to review the response measures adopted by the affected state governments was chaired by PM Modi. The Prime Minister took stock of response preparedness and the evacuation measures adopted by the NDRF.