Kolkata on Alert As Cyclone Asani Intensifies

Story Highlights
  • Cyclone Asani to make landfall earlier than expected.
  • Leaves of KMC employees cancelled in view of cyclone.
  • Coastal districts of Purba Medinipur, South 24 Parganas and North 24 Parganas in West Bengal on high alert.

Kolkata: The Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) has put on alert its employees and disaster management teams in view of the formation of cyclonic storm Asani, which is likely to intensify further into a severe cyclone, mayor Firhad Hakim said on Sunday.

Leaves of all employees concerned are being cancelled to deal with any emergency evolving due to the cyclone, which he said is unlikely to hit the city but will bring heavy rains in its wake.

The storm continues to strengthen today but prior to its landfall, it is expected to hit some dry air to weaken its impact. Heavy rainfall is expected to wrap around Bangladesh. As per IMD, the cyclone had already formed around 2:30 am on Sunday. Further 12 hours ago it was located over southwest Bay of Bengal about 450kms west-northwest of Car Nicobar, 380 km west of Port Blair. On early Monday morning, the system moving northwestwards will gradually intensify into a severe cyclonicn storm over the east-central Bay of Bengal. By the 10th evening, the storm is expected to move west and central adjoining northwest Bay of Bengal off the coasts of North Andhra Pradesh and Orissa.

It is likely to bring in its wake light to moderate rainfall over Gangetic West Bengal from Tuesday to Friday with heavy downpour at one or two places in the coastal districts of Purba Medinipur, South 24 Parganas and North 24 Parganas in West Bengal, the weatherman said.

The administrations of these three districts are keeping cyclone shelters, schools and other pucca structures, dry food and necessary medicines ready to deal with any situation that may occur, a state government official said.

Fishermen at fishing ports of Shankarpur, Fraserganj and other places were asked by the police and civil defence officials not to venture into the sea in view of the rough weather conditions that are likely to prevail.

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