Addressing a press conference on Tuesday, May 19, National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) chief SN Pradhan and India Meteorological Department (IMD) chief Mrutyunjay Mohapatra talked about the Cyclone Amphan situation in various parts of the country. Highlighting that Jagatsinghpur was a high impact district, the NDRF chief stated that all preparations had been taken in view of Amphan being a super cyclone. He revealed that 19 and 15 NDRF teams had been deployed in West Bengal and Odisha respectively.
They are in the process of carrying out evacuation and awareness drives. Additionally, he mentioned that 11 battalions are in Varanasi, 9 in Patna, 1 in Guwahati, 10 in Vijaywada, 4 in Arakkonam, and 5 in Pune as a backup. Each of the aforesaid battalions comprises of 4 teams.
NDRF chief SN Pradhan remarked, "Jagatsinghpur is a high impact district. We have made preparations considering this as a super cyclone. Today, the Cabinet Secretary held the National Crisis Management meeting. Additionally, the Home Minister talked to the respective CMs. He took stock of the situation and there is perfect coordination between the states and the Centre."
Meanwhile, the IMD chief observed that Cyclone Amphan was the most intense cyclone in the Bay of Bengal after 1999. He added that it was moving towards the north-northeast direction with a wind speed of 200-240 km per hour and would make a landfall tomorrow evening. According to Mrutyunjay Mohapatra, districts such as North and South 24 Parganas, East Midnapore, Kolkata, Hooghly, Howrah, and West Midnapore in West Bengal could be possibly affected due to the cyclone.
"Amphan is a super cyclone. After 1999, this is the most intense cyclone in the Bay of Bengal after the super cyclone. Currently, its wind speed is 200-240 km per hour. It is moving towards the north-northeast direction. It will make a landfall tomorrow afternoon or evening," the IMD chief said.
As far as West Bengal is concerned, the districts which can be possibly affected are North & South 24 Parganas and East Midnapore districts. Kolkata, Hooghly, Howrah and West Midnapore districts will face wind speed of 110-120 kmph gusting up to 135 kmph: IMD Chief #AmphanCyclone pic.twitter.com/DAJVlHgdTZ— ANI (@ANI) May 19, 2020
A day earlier, Prime Minister Narendra Modi chaired a high-level meeting with the Ministry of Home Affairs and National Disaster Management Authority officials to review the Cyclone Amphan situation in various parts of the country. Union Home Minister Amit Shah also participated in the meeting. As per the Prime Minister's Office, PM Modi reviewed the preparedness and evacuation plan presented by the National Disaster Response Force. Furthermore, he assured all possible support from the Centre and expressed hope that everyone would remain safe.