3 lakh to be evac­u­ated in Guj

DNA (Daily News & Analysis) Mumbai Edition - - FRONT PAGE - DNA Cor­re­spon­dent cor­re­spon­[email protected]­dia.net

New Delhi: Cy­clone Vayu, which makes land­fall at Gu­jarat coast near Ver­aval early on Thurs­day morn­ing, has put the en­tire state ma­chin­ery on high alert, of­fi­cials said.

Al­most 300,000 peo­ple are set to be evac­u­ated in Gu­jarat out of the path of the se­vere cy­clonic storm due in two days, author­i­ties said.

After an emer­gency meet­ing, state chief sec­re­tary JN Singh said: “We have iden­ti­fied 2.91 lakh peo­ple liv­ing in low-ly­ing ar­eas of 10 coastal dis­tricts who will be evac­u­ated by Wed­nes­day af­ter­noon.”

Union Home Min­is­ter Amit Shah took a high-level meet­ing and di­rected of­fi­cials con­cerned to take ev­ery pos­si­ble mea­sure to en­sure that peo­ple are safely evac­u­ated.

Shah also in­structed that es­sen­tial ser­vices like power, telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions and wa­ter sup­ply be main­tained through the storm, or re­stored im­me­di­ately in case they get dam­aged.

The meet­ing was at­tended by Union Home Sec­re­tary, se­nior of­fi­cers in the home min­istry, sec­re­tary in the Min­istry of Earth Sciences, and se­nior In­dia Me­te­o­ro­log­i­cal De­part­ment of­fi­cials.

The home min­istry is in touch with author­i­ties in­clud­ing Gu­jarat, Ma­ha­rash­tra, Goa, Kar­nataka, Da­man and Diu, which may be vul­ner­bale. IMD of­fi­cials said the cy­clone is likely to dump rain in Kutch, Jam­na­gar, Ju­na­gadh, Devb­hoomi-dwarka, Por­ban­dar, Ra­jkot, Am­reli, Bhav­na­gar and Gir-som­nath dis­tricts. Gu­jarat Chief Min­is­ter Vi­jay Ru­pani said peo­ple liv­ing in the coastal belt would be shifted to safer places.

The of­fi­cials con­cerned are in touch with the Odisha gov­ern­ment to im­ple­ment dis­as­ter man­age­ment tech­niques adopted when cy­clone Fani hit the eastern coastal state re­cently, 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,” he said. “All schools and col­leges in the coastal dis­tricts of Saurash­tra and Kutch would re­main close on June 12 and June 13 as a pre­cau­tion­ary mea­sure,” said JN Singh.

He added that 67 shelter homes have been set up to ac­com­mo­date those dis­placed. Chi­nese boats off Maha

As cy­clone Vayu was in­ten­si­fy­ing in Ara­bian Sea, some Chi­nese boats Tues­day sought shelter from author­i­ties off Rat­na­giri in Ma­ha­rash­tra, a Coast Guard of­fi­cial said.

As per IMD com­mu­ni­ca­tion Tues­day, the speed of “Vayu” has in­creased to 17 km per hour in the last six hours of Tues­day evening.

An IMD sci­en­tist mon­i­tors Cy­clone Vayu at his of­fice in Ahmed­abad—reuters

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