Kutch: Gujarat’s Saurashtra and Kutch regions, along with the adjoining Pakistan coasts, are on high alert as cyclone Biparjoy approaches.
The cyclone is predicted to make landfall Thursday evening, bringing with it potentially destructive winds and heavy rainfall.
As a preparatory measure, Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation will take down hoardings placed in unsafe areas and trim or cut down trees that might have a chance of falling due to heavy rain and wind.
Cyclone Biparjoy is projected to cross between Mandvi in Kutch, Gujarat, and Karachi in Pakistan near Jakhau port. The cyclone’s landfall is anticipated to bring strong winds with speeds ranging from 125-135 kmph, gusting up to 150 kmph, posing a significant threat to the affected areas.
The ongoing rescue operation is being crried out in two phases. The first phase involves evacuating individuals residing within 0 to 5 kilometers of the seashore, prioritising their safety. The second phase will focus on relocating those living within 5 to 10 kilometers of the coast, ensuring comprehensive evacuation efforts.
Relocation of people
Authorities in Gujarat have initiated a massive evacuation effort to ensure the safety of coastal residents. Approximately 37,800 individuals have been relocated from vulnerable areas to temporary shelters in anticipation of the cyclone’s impact. Jakhau port in the Kutch district is among the areas expected to be most affected.
Union Home Minister Amit Shah chaired a virtual meeting on Tuesday to assess the state’s preparedness for the cyclone. Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel and other senior officials participated in the discussion. Minister Shah emphasised the importance of evacuating residents from vulnerable areas and ensuring essential services remain accessible in these regions.
Disaster response teams, including the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and State Disaster Response Force (SDRF), are on standby to provide assistance in the aftermath of the cyclone. The Army has also positioned flood relief columns at strategic locations, working in coordination with civil administration and NDRF authorities.
The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has issued a warning for extremely heavy rainfall accompanied by strong winds in coastal parts of the Saurashtra-Kutch region. Specific attention is being given to the districts of Kutch, Porbandar, and Devbhumi Dwarka, where significant rainfall is expected.
Following its landfall, Cyclone Biparjoy is likely to weaken and move northeastward towards extreme south Rajasthan. During this progression, the cyclone is likely to bring heavy to very heavy rainfall to northern Gujarat until June 15-17, according to IMD director Manorama Mohanty.
To address the cyclone’s impact, 17 NDRF and 12 SDRF teams have been strategically positioned in the affected districts of Devbhumi Dwarka, Rajkot, Jamnagar, Junagadh, Porbandar, Gir Somnath, Morbi, and Valsad, ready to provide immediate assistance.
In preparation for Cyclone Biparjoy, Western Railway has taken precautionary measures to ensure the safety of passengers and minimize disruptions. As a result, over 67 trains have been cancelled.