Severe Cyclone Fani likely to hit Odisha coast early on Friday morning

Severe Cyclone Fani likely to hit Odisha coast early on Friday morning
Severe Cyclone Fani likely to hit Odisha coast early on Friday morning

The severe cyclonic storm brewing over West-Central Bay of Bengal is likely to hit the Odisha coast between 8 am and 10 am on Friday.

By 2 pm, the cyclone lay centred about 320 km south-southwest of Puri and was moving with a speed of 17 km/hr. During landfall, it will have a maximum sustained wind speed of 170 kmph to 180 kmph gusting up to 200 km/h.

Special Relief Commissioner in Bhubaneswar Bishnupada Sethi said the process of landfall may continue till 12 noon.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday reviewed the preparedness for Cyclone Fani and ordered the administration to maintain close coordination with officials of the affected states to ensure proper preventive measures, a government statement said.

PM reviews preparedness for Cyclone Fani
PM reviews preparedness for Cyclone Fani

The Prime Minister was briefed on the likely path of the cyclone and the ongoing precautionary measures being undertaken, the statement said.

After reviewing the emerging situation, the prime minister instructed senior officers to maintain close coordination with officers of affected states, to ensure preventive measures, and also to take effective steps for relief and rescue operations, as required.

The meeting was attended by the Cabinet Secretary, the Principal Secretary to the PM, the Additional Principal Secretary to the PM, the Home Secretary, and other senior officials from the IMD, NDRF, NDMA and PMO.

PM reviews preparedness for Cyclone Fani
PM reviews preparedness for Cyclone Fani

Officials said around 5 lakh people had been evacuated by 5 pm in Ganjam district. A total of 11.54 lakh people will be evacuated in 13 districts likely to be affected by the cyclone.

Over 100 trains have been cancelled in Odisha, flight services have also been suspended from Bhubaneswar airport from Thursday midnight in view of the cyclone. Officials of the Airport Authority of India said all flights to and fro from the Biju Patnaik International Airport have been suspended from midnight for the next 24 hours.