New Delhi: Eight people have reportedly been killed as ‘extremely severe’ cyclone Fani made landfall on eastern coast of Odisha on Friday morning. The government has so far, evacuated nearly 12 lakh people. Besides, the Indian Coast Guard had positioned 34 disaster relief teams at different spots and also deployed four ships, to deal with any kind of exigency.

The Coast Guard tweeted on Thursday, “While Extremely Severe Cyclonic Storm FANI lay centered 170 kms ENE of Vishakhapatnam India Coast Guard positions 34 Disaster Relief Teams DRTs at Vizag Chennai Paradip Gopalpur Haldia Frazergunj and Kolkata besides 04 Coast Guard ships at Vizag and Chennai DefenceMinIndia.” According to the Union home ministry, an estimated 10,000 villages and 52 towns in Odisha are set to encounter winds blowing at 225 kmph.

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  • The Ministry of Civil Aviation informed that the Airports Authority of India (AAI) conducted review meeting on Friday at Bhubaneswar airport around 6.30 PM and took stock of the situation. Following the meeting, it was decided that the commercial flight operations will resume with effect from 1.00 PM on May 4.
  • The death toll in connection with cyclone Fani, that made a landfall on eastern coast of Odisha, increased to eight. Out of the total, 3 people died in Puri district, 3 in Bhubaneswar and surroundings, 1 each in Nayagarh and Kendrapara.
  • Due to cyclone Fani, AIIMS Delhi has cancelled May 5 AIIMS PG exam which was scheduled to be conducted at examination centre in Bhubaneswar.
  • The Odisha government on Friday evening confirmed that seven people have been killed in the cyclone, reported Zee News.
  • According to a Government of India Spokesperson, extensive damage has been caused to kuchha houses, old buildings and temporary shops in Puri. There has been no confirmed report on the number of deaths. However, 160 people are said to be injured. In Odisha, power and telecom is completely down, while NDRF and State forces are clearing roads.
  • Civil Aviation Minister Suresh Prabhu on Friday evening directed Civil Aviation Secretary to continuously monitor the situation in Odisha in the wake of cyclone Fani. He also claimed that the DGCA will be issuing revised advisories to Airlines as and when necessary, while all possible steps for passenger safety are being taken to minimize their inconvenience.
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday said over Rs 1,000 crore had been released in advance for the states affected by Cyclone Fani. Addressing an election rally in Hindaun in Rajasthan, he said the government was with the people in times of crises.”Lakhs of families are affected by a cyclone in the coastal areas of Odisha, West Bengal, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Puducherry and the Centre is in touch with the state governments. I got the latest update from officers some time ago and also held a detailed review meeting yesterday. More than Rs 1,000 crore have been released in advance.”

  • A 32-year-old woman in Bhubaneswar gave birth to a baby girl in Railway Hospital today at 11:03 AM. The baby who has been named after the cyclonic storm, Fani and the mother are fine.  The woman is a railway employee who works as a helper at Coach Repair Workshop in Mancheswar.

Cyclone Fani

  • Prime Minister Modi said, “I took latest update from officers. I held a review meeting yesterday. More than Rs 1000 cr was release to concerned government’s yesterday in advance. NDRF, Indian Coast Guard, Army, Navy, Air Force are working with the administration. I assure the affected people that nation & centre are with them.”

  • The Police personnel of Nayapalli police station in Odisha cleared the roads in Bhubaneswar damaged by the cyclone. In fact, several trees were uprooted due to the heavy rain and strong winds which hit the region today.

Cyclone Fani

  • BJP President Amit Shah cancelled all his three public rallies scheduled in Jharkhand today, owing to bad weather conditions in the state, stated news agency.

  • The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) announced that flights to and from Kolkata airport between 3 PM on Friday to 8 PM Saturday are cancelled.
  • IMD official Mrityunjay Mohapatra further said that cyclone Fani had moved away from Andhra Pradesh. In view of this, a de-warning has been issued by the Met. Department. Notably, three districts in the state were impacted by heavy rainfall.
  • Mrityunjay Mohapatra, the officer at IMD of Delhi stated that cyclone Fani is likely to weaken in the next three hours with a wind speed of 150-160 km per hour. Subsequently, the storm will weaken and move north-northeastwards. He added, “By evening, it may weaken into severe cyclonic storm over extreme northern part of Odisha.”

  • The East Coast Railways announced that a special train will run from Visakhapatnam to Mumbai CSTM with the timings and stoppages of Konark Express (11020) in view of the inconvenience caused to the transportation by the storm.

  • The NDRF team deployed at Digha in West Bengal evacuated a  total of 132 people, including 52 children, from Dattapur and Tajpur. They have been taken to a shelter.

  • IMD in Vizag added, “Under system’s influence, many places over Srikakulam will receive light to moderate rainfall, with isolated heavy to very heavy rainfall. Wind speed of 70-80 gusting to 90 km/hr will be there in Srikakulam. System influence will be mostly over Srikakulam for next 12 hrs.”
  • Also Read: Cyclone Fani Likely to Move North-North Eastwards From Odisha Towards West Bengal
  • The Meteorological Department official of Visakhapatnam in Andhra Pradesh, SVJ Kumar said, “Extremely severe cyclonic storm Fani over North-Central Bay of Bengal and adjoining West-Central Bay of Bengal is currently about 300 km East-Noth East of Visakhapatnam and 25 km West-South West of Puri. At the time of crossing, winds at Puri would be around 170-180 gusting to 200 km/hr.”
  • West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee will stay in Kharagpur, near the coastal belt in view of the approaching storm. She will also monitor the situation herself on May 3 and May 4. Notably, all her political campaigns for the two days have been cancelled.

  • The IMD in Hyderabad said, “Winds in Puri, Odisha are blowing at a maximum speed of 240-245 km per hour and heavy to very heavy rains are continuing over the Odisha coast. After landfall, the impact is likely to reduce and it is likely to move towards the West Bengal coast.”
  • 13 Navy aircraft are at standby in Andhra Pradesh’s Visakhapatnam. Thus a damage assessment and relief distribution requirements will be conducted by the state authorities in view of the cyclone Fani.

  • The India Meteorological Department stated that the cyclone Fani is very likely to move north-northeastwards, weaken gradually and emerge into Gangetic West Bengal as a ‘severe’ cyclonic storm and move to Bangladesh after weakening.
  • The relief operation by NDRF (National Disaster Response Force) is underway in Kotturu Mandal of Srikakulam in Andhra Pradesh which received rain and experienced strong winds today.
  • The Director of the Meteorological Department of Bhubaneswar, HR Biswas said, “Extremely severe cyclone Fani landfall started at 8 AM. Some of the portion of the eye has already entered land area. It’ll take 2 more hrs to complete landfall process. Landfall position is close to Puri. It’ll continue upto 10.30 AM.”

  • As a preparation for the aftermath of Cyclone Fani, the Indian Coast Guard has positioned 34 Disaster Relief Teams at Vizag, Chennai, Paradip, Gopalpur, Haldia, Frazergunj and Kolkata besides four Coast Guard ships at Vizag and Chennai.
  • After the cyclone hit Odisha’s Puri, the IMD tweeted, “Current wind speed of the cyclone is 175-185 kmph gusting to 195 kmph. Puri reported maximum sustained wind speed of 142 kmph gusting to 174 kmph 0730 hrs IST of today.”

  • NDRF personnel at Paradip sea beach had asked the locals to vacate the area as soon as possible as strong winds and rain hit the region.

NDRF

  • Puri recorded a wind speed of 175 kmph while Bhubaneshwar recorded 50 kmph, as reported by Zee news.

  • As per the Cyclone Warning Center in Andhra Pradesh’s Visakhapatnam, a local cautionary signal no. 3 kept has been hoisted at Machilipatnam, Krishnapatnam, Nizamapatnam, Kakinada and Vadarevu ports, stated news agency ANI.

  • The Cyclone Warning Center in Andhra Pradesh’s Visakhapatnam stated that great danger signal no. 10 has been hoisted at Kalingapatnam, Bheemunipatnam ports, while great danger signal no. 8 has been hoisted at Visakhapatnam and Gangavaram ports.

  • The SBSTC buses will be available at half an hour or lesser interval from 5 AM today. In case of an emergency, 15 more buses will be deployed, stated news agency ANI.
  • The South Bengal State Transport Corporation (SBSTC) will operate about 50 Buses from Digha in West Bengal on May 3. This is a step to evacuate the stranded tourists at Digha and to minimise the inconvenience caused due to suspension of train operations to Digha on the same day in view of the cyclonic storm.

    • IMD stated that cyclone Fani is very likely to move further north-northeastwards and emerge into Bangladesh on 4 May evening as a Cyclonic Storm.

  • As per IMD, after making landfall in Odisha, the system is expected to move north-northeastwards, weaken gradually and then emerge into the Gangetic West Bengal as a Severe Cyclonic Storm by the early morning of May 4.

  • Over 1 million people have been evacuated from vulnerable districts in the last 24 hours, stated the Odisha CMO adding that Ganjam and Puri alone evacuated over 3 lakh and 1.3 lakh people respectively to safe shelters. Moreover, about 5000 kitchens have begun their operations to serve people in the shelters.

  • To get the latest updates about the cyclone, contact the Ministry of Home Affairs’ Control Room. The helpline number – 1938 is operational now.

  • The India Meteorological Department announced that Cyclone Fani is very likely to cross Odisha Coast between Gopalpur and Chandbali, located south of Puri by Friday forenoon with a maximum sustained wind speed of 170-180 kmph gusting to 200 kmph. The landfall process is expected to continue till the noon of May 3.

  • The state government has suspended Chief District Medical Officer (CDMO) of Rayagada, Siva Prasad Padhi, for failing to join duty despite its order which led to the cancellation of holidays of all the employees in Health Department in view of the cyclonic storm Fani.
  • Once the wind speed reduces, the state government will ensure that the power supply is restored in a phased manner after checking the electrical installations.
  • In view of the severe cyclonic storm Fani, the Odisha Government has decided to disconnect the power supply when the wind speed reaches 50 km/hr. This will be done as a precautionary measure for the safety of people and the equipment.

Fani is listed as the most severe cyclonic storm since the super cyclone of 1999 that claimed the lives of nearly 10,000 people and devastated swathes of Odisha, said the Joint Typhoon Warning Centre. After crossing Odisha, the cyclone is likely to move towards West Bengal before tapering off. Besides, the cyclone is likely to impact parts of the northeast, Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu.

(With agency inputs)