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Cyclone Gulab takes shape, likely to make landfall on Sunday

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Bhubaneswar, Sep 25 (IANS) Cyclonic storm ‘Gulab’ (pronounced as Gul-Aab) has formed over northwest and adjoining west-central Bay of Bengal, said India Meteorological Department (IMD) on Saturday evening.

The IMD has issued cyclone warning for north Andhra Pradesh and adjoining south Odisha coasts.

At 5.30 p.m. on Saturday, the cyclonic storm ‘Gulab’ lay centered about 370 km east-southeast of Gopalpur of Odisha and 440 km east of Kalingapatnam of Andhra Pradesh, it said.

The cyclone is likely to move nearly westwards and cross north Andhra Pradesh – south Odisha coasts between Kalingapatnam and Gopalpur around Sunday evening.

Under its impact, heavy rainfall would occur in some places of Kendrapada, Jagatsinghpur, Puri, Khordha, Ganjam, Nayagarh, Kandhamal and Cuttack districts. The coastal and south Odisha districts are very likely to experience heavy to very heavy rainfall for next two days.

Squally wind speed reaching 75-85 kmph gusting to 95 kmph is likely along and off Odisha coasts from Sunday afternoon, till midnight in Ganjam, Gajapati districts, 55-65 kmph gusting to 75 kmph along & off Khordha, Puri, Rayagada and Koraput districts, 50-60 kmph gusting to 70 kmph over Nabarangpur and Malkangiri, the IMD bulletin said.

There may be damage to thatched huts, minor damage to power and communication lines due to breaking of branches and paddy crops, banana, papaya trees and orchards, it said.

As sea conditions would be rough, the fishermen are advised not to venture into the sea, along and off Odisha coasts northwest & adjoining west-central Bay of Bengal till September 27.

Meanwhile, the Odisha government has asked the concerned district collectors to remain alert and take measures to counter the cyclone.

Special Relief Commissioner P.K. Jena said 42 ODRAF teams, 24 NDRF teams and 102 Fire Service teams will be deployed in seven districts which are likely to be most affected by the cyclonic storm.

He said the IMD has predicted that seven districts would experience less wind but heavy to very heavy rainfall on Sunday and Monday. Due to heavy rainfall, flash floods may occur in Rushikulya, Nagavali and Vamsadhara rivers and landslides in Gajapati and Rayagada districts and small trees may also be uprooted, Jena said.

“During 2018 Cyclone Titli, we witnessed landslides in Gajapati district. We have directed officials in Gajapati and Rayagada districts to take appropriate steps to deal with landslide incidents. Directions have also been issued to take steps for proper evacuation in areas which are prone to landslides,” he added.

Source: IANS

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