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Cyclone Tauktae News: Cyclone Tauktae Weakens After Hitting Gujarat, 6 Dead In Maharashtra

May 18, 11:28 / Mənbə: Ndtv.com

Cyclone Tauktae: Over 1.5 lakh people were evacuated in Gujarat ahead of landfall

At 9.30 am Tuesday Tauktae, which has been downgraded from an 'extremely severe' cyclonic storm to 'very severe', was centred over Saurashtra in Gujarat, some 205 km southwest of Ahmedabad. The weather department said it was moving north-northeast at 10 km per hour and is expected to weaken gradually over the next three hours.

Very heavy rainfall is likely over parts of Saurashtra today, as are gale force winds up to 115 km per hour in Amreli, Bhavnagar and Botad. Gusts of 120 km per hour have been predicted in Diu, Gir Somnath and southern parts of Ahmedabad for the next three hours. Tidal waves (between one and two metres) are likely to flood coastal areas in Amreli, Gir Somnath, Diu, Bhavnagar and southern parts of Ahmedabad for the next three hours.

The storm slammed into the Gujarat coast with gale force winds that sent waves crashing into the shore, flooding streets, destroying houses and electricity poles, and uprooting trees. Over two lakh people had been evacuated in advance, but tens of thousands more were forced to flee from coastal villages to escape Tauktae's fury.

Disaster response and emergency teams from the centre and state are working with local authorities to provide rescue and relief. Special arrangements, including oxygen supplies, have also been made to treat tens of thousands of Covid patients - Gujarat has around one lakh active cases - in hospitals and medical facilities in the affected regions.

Chief Minister Vijay Rupani said 1,000 Covid hospitals in coastal towns were given generators to maintain electricity supply. He also said there was a buffer stock of 1,700 metric tonnes of liquid oxygen to be used in case of an emergency.

Mumbai (and Maharashtra) may have escaped the worst but the city was lashed with 115 km per hour winds, forcing authorities to shut the airport and the iconic Bandra-Worli sea link for hours. Waterlogging was reported and vehicular movement slowed to a crawl. Visuals from the iconic Gateway of India showed waves crashing into the culverts

The Indian Navy has rescued 177 people from barges that went adrift in the Arabian Sea as Tauktae blew past Mumbai. Three warships - INS Kolkata, INS Kochi and INS Talwar - were deployed after distress calls were received from two barges that were carrying 410 people between them. Rescue efforts are ongoing.

Union Home Minister Amit Shah spoke to the chief ministers of affected states - Gujarat, Maharashtra and Rajasthan - and administrators of the Union Territory of Dadra And Nagar Haveli - to review the situation and offer help from the centre.

Apart from the Maharashtra deaths, another eight people died in Karnataka as Tauktae brushed past the southern state over the weekend. State officials said over 120 villages in seven coastal districts were affected. Seven people also died in Kerala and nearly 1,500 houses were damaged, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan tweeted late Monday.

Tauktae - regarded as the most powerful storm in the region in nearly three decades - struck as India battles a devastating second wave of coronavirus infections and deaths. The impact of the storm and the presence of large numbers of relief teams working in close proximity to each other has raised concerns over the possible spread of the virus.

With input from AFP, Reuters, ANI

Xəbərin mənbəsi: Ndtv.com


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