On Monday, 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 India. Union Home Minister Amit Shah also participated in the meeting. The meeting took stock of the response measures against Cyclone Amphan developing in the Bay of Bengal.
As per the Prime Minister's Office, PM Modi reviewed the preparedness and evacuation plan presented by the National Disaster Response Force. On this occasion, the DG, NDRF mentioned that 25 NDRF teams have been deployed on the ground while 12 others were in reserve. He elaborated that 24 other NDRF teams were on standby in different parts of the country. The PM assured all possible support from the Centre and expressed hope that everyone would remain safe.
Reviewed the preparedness regarding the situation due to cyclone ‘Amphan.’ The response measures as well as evacuation plans were discussed. I pray for everyone's safety and assure all possible support from the Central Government. https://t.co/VJGCRE7jBO— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) May 18, 2020
India Meteorological Department Director-General Mrutyunjaya Mohapatra revealed that Cyclone Amphan in the Bay of Bengal had intensified into an extremely severe cyclonic storm on Monday. He added that it was expected to further intensify into a super cyclonic storm. According to him, the cyclone would cross Digha in West Bengal and Hatia island in Bangladesh in the afternoon or evening of May 20 with a wind speed of 155-165 km per hour.
Earlier, the IMD issued a rainfall warning for isolated places over the districts of Ganjam, Gajapati, Puri, Jagatsinghpur, and Kendrapara. As per the IMD, the rainfall which is expected to begin from the evening of May 18 can last for 4 days. The Odisha government has started the process of evacuating people from vulnerable areas and fishermen have been advised not to venture into the sea until May 21.
The IMD Director-General remarked, "It will move towards north-northeast direction and cross Digha (West Bengal)- Hatia island (Bangladesh) on the afternoon/evening of May 20 with a wind speed of 155-165 km/h."
(With ANI inputs)