New Delhi: With cyclone Vayu set to make landfall along Gujarat coast on Thursday, the Union Home Ministry has issued detailed advisories to Gujarat government and the Diu administration, asking them to take precautionary measures to prevent loss of life.
According to a Home Ministry statement, the Gujarat and Diu administrations have planned to evacuate about three lakh people from the identified vulnerable areas starting early Wednesday. These people will be shifted to around 700 cyclone/relief shelters.
An IMD alert said, “It is very likely to move nearly northwards and cross Gujarat coast between Porbandar and Mahuva around Veraval & Diu region as a Severe Cyclonic Storm with wind speed 110-120 kmph gusting to 135 kmph during the early morning of 13th June.”
As many as 39 NDRF teams are being positioned in Gujarat and Diu for helping in evacuation, search, rescue and relief operations. Also, 34 teams of the Army have been put on standby. The advisories followed a high-level review meeting by Union Home Minister Amit Shah on the cyclone where he is reported to have told the officials to ensure the maintenance of all essential services such as power, telecommunications, health, drinking water.
The Home Ministry also asked the administrations to ensure early recovery of all essential services post-cyclone landfall. IAF C-17 aircraft landed in Jamnagar with an NDRF team.
Union Home Secretary will take a review meeting on Wednesday with the central ministries/agencies and the chief secretary of Gujarat and Diu.
IMD Ahmedabad Director Jayanta Sarkar said, “Cyclone Vayu is likely to cross the Saurashtra coast as a severe cyclonic storm. We have issued a warning for fishermen and signal number 2 (warning for ships leaving the port). The onset of monsoon in Gujarat could be delayed due to the cyclone.”
Earlier on Tuesday, the National Crisis Management Committee (NCMC) also met under the chairmanship of Cabinet Secretary Pradeep Kumar Sinha and reviewed preparedness.
Meanwhile, Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani said that leaves of all the employees concerned had been cancelled. “After the Cabinet meet on Wednesday, all the ministers will go to various districts to oversee relief and rescue operations,” he said.
“June 13 and 14 are crucial for us. We have roped in the Army, NDRF, Coast Guard and other agencies for rescue and relief work. To minimise human casualty, we will start shifting people living in coastal areas to safer locations from tomorrow,” he said.