New Delhi [India]: Cabinet secretary Rajiv Gauba on Friday reviewed preparedness of the central agencies and governments of Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Odisha and Puducherry to deal with the impending cyclone 'Michaung' in the Bay of Bengal and directed the authorities concerned to ensure there is "no loss of lives" and damage is minimised.
Reviewing the preparedness measures in the National Crisis Management Committee (NCMC) meeting here in the national capital, Gauba stressed that all necessary preventive and precautionary measures should be taken by the state governments.
"The aim should be to ensure that there is no loss of lives and to minimise damage to property and infrastructure. Further, all essential services should be restored in the shortest possible time," the Cabinet Secretary directed in the NCMC meeting.
Chairing the meeting, Gauba also raised concerns about the safety of fishermen and said it is ensured that the fishermen at sea return to safety.
"The safety of manpower deployed on oil rigs, vessels, etc. should be ensured," he said.
The Cabinet Secretary further assured the governments of Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Odisha and Puducherry that all the central agencies are ready and will be available for their assistance.
In the meeting, the Director General of the India Meteorological Department (IMD), briefed the committee about the current status of cyclone 'Michaung'.
"The depression over Southeast and adjoining Southwest Bay of Bengal moved west-northwestwards with a speed of 13 kmph during the past six hours and lay centred at 11.30 am today over the same region near Latitude 9.5°N and Longitude 86.0°E, about 730 km east-southeast of Puducherry, 740 km east-southeast of Chennai, 860 km southeast of Nellore, 930 km southeast of Bapatla and 910 km southeast of Machilipatnam," the IMD Director General informed the committee.
"It is likely to move west-northwestward, intensify into a deep depression by the 2nd and further into a cyclonic storm over the southwest Bay of Bengal around December 3. Further, it would move northwestwards and reach near south Andhra Pradesh and adjoining north Tamil Nadu coasts by December 4 forenoon. Thereafter, it would move nearly northwards, almost parallel to the south Andhra Pradesh coast and cross South Andhra Pradesh during the forenoon of December 5 between Nellore and Machilipatnam as a cyclonic storm with a wind speed of 80-90 kmph gusting to 100 kmph," he added.
Chief Secretaries of Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Odisha and Finance Secretary Puducherry apprised the committee of the preparatory measures being taken to protect the public and property in the expected path of the cyclone and measures being taken by the local administration.
"Fishermen have been asked not to venture out into the sea. Adequate shelters, power supplies, medicine and emergency services are being kept in readiness," they said.
The National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) has made 18 teams available to Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Odisha and Puducherry, and 10 additional teams have been kept ready.
Rescue and relief teams of the Coast Guard, Army and Navy, along with ships and aircraft, have been kept ready on standby.
The meeting was attended by the Chief Secretary of Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Odisha, the Secretary of Finance, Puducherry, the Union Home Secretary, Secretary of the Department of Fisheries, the Secretary of the Ministry of Power, Additional Secretary, Ministries of Ports, Shipping and Waterways/Petroleum and Natural Gas/Telecom, Member Secretary NDMA, DG IMD, DG Coast Guard, DCISC IDS, IG NDRF and senior officers from the Ministry of Home Affairs.