Cyclone Nivar Latest Updates: The India Meteorological Department (IMD) on Wednesday night said the very severe cyclonic storm Nivar has made landfall which at present lies about 50 km east-southeast of Cuddalore, about 40 km east southeast of Puducherry. The weather department further stated that the centre of the cyclone will cross coast near Puducherry in next 3 hours. Also Read - Chinese President Would Have Been Wearing Made-in-India Shirts If Our Workers Were Strong, Says Rahul Gandhi
Giving further details, the IMD said that after 3 AM, the intensity of cyclone will decrease. However, rainfall will continue till Thursday. Also Read - Elephant Dies After Being Set on Fire by Tamil Nadu Resort Workers, Horrific Act Caught on Camera
Ahead of the landfall, torrential rains accompanied by gusty winds lashed parts of Tamil Nadu and Puducherry on Wednesday evening leaving several areas inundated. Also Read - Sasikala Tests Positive For Coronavirus in Second RT-PCR Test, Shifted to Intensive Care
Under its influence, coastal and north interior Tamil Nadu, Puducherry and Kariakal regions received heavy showers. South coastal Andhra Pradesh is also likely to witness showers at most places.
Over one lakh people evacuated
Part of the preventive measure, over one lakh people have been evacuated to safety from the coastal areas while power supply was disconnected in vulnerable areas.
Tamil Nadu Revenue Minister R B Udhayakumar and officials said over 1.21 lakh people, including children, have been housed in 1,000 relief centres in various districts, including Nagapattinam, Cuddalore and Villupuram districts.
Food, water and all other essentials including masks to help prevent coronavirus have been made available to them in the relief centres, he said.
NDRF deploys 50 teams
The National Disaster Response Force has earmarked a total of 50 teams, with 30 being deployed on the ground in Tamil Nadu, Puducherry and Andhra Pradesh.
On the other hand, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister K Palaniswami declared Thursday a public holiday for 13 districts. Later, a government order included three more districts considering the safety of people in view of the cyclone.
Chennai airport shut
The Chennai international airport has been closed till Thursday 7 AM, while the Railways cancelled over a dozen special trains on November 25 and 26 scheduled to either originate from and terminate in the southern states.
The Chennai Metro Rail, which operated minimum services, ended it at 8 PM and usual operations would resume on Thursday depending on the weather.
Due to heavy rains ahead of the cyclone, the gates of Chembarambakkam, one of the key drinking water sources of Chennai, were opened for the first time in five years, releasing a torrent of surplus water into the Adyar river.
Chennai and its suburbs, which received heavy overnight rains, continued to witness intermittent showers coupled with strong winds with low-lying areas getting inundated and water entering houses in such localities.
Prohibitory orders under CrPC Section 144 have been clamped in Puducherry region from Tuesday 9 PM to Thursday 6 AM due to the cyclone.
All state government offices and educational institutions that were to function to help students appearing for public examinations were declared closed for Thursday. Wednesday was a public holiday. However, departments that are to provide essential services functioned as usual.
200 relief camps in Puducherry
People living in low lying areas or close to the sea shore were being evacuated to safer places or to relief camps. A total of 200 relief camps have been established in Puducherry region and all those accommodated there were subjected COVID-19 tests.
(With inputs from PTI)