Cyclone alert for West Bengal, Bangladesh coasts

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While Andaman and Nicobar Islands are likely to receive light to moderate rainfall on May 15 and 16, Odisha and West Bengal are likely to receive light to moderate rainfall on May 18 with heavy rains and very heavy rainfall on May 19 and May 20. "Rainfall at most places with heavy to very heavy rainfall at a few places on 19th May and isolated heavy rainfall over north coastal Odisha on 20th May 2020". It is very likely to feature an "eye", a show of strength of the cyclone, in another 24 hours.

The IMD also issued an orange warning (be prepared) for the state, saying squally wind speed reaching 45 to 55 kmph gusting to 65 kmph is likely along and off the Odisha coast from May 19 morning. "Wind speed could touch 85km/hr in the coasts with gusts of 100 km/hr", added Das. "It will gradually increase thereafter becoming 110 to 120 kmph gusting to 135 kmph along and off north Odisha coast from the afternoon of May 20", the IMD warns. The wind speed is likely to rise to 190 kmph or more, it said.

Sea condition will be very high over southwest and adjoining central Bay of Bengal during the next 24 hours. Fishermen are advised not to venture into the South Bay till later today; the Central Bay from today till tomorrow; and the North Bay from Tuesday to Wednesday.

Advising the fishermen Bhubaneswar Meteorological Centre Director H.R. Biswas, said, "Fishermen advised not to venture into sea and return to coast till night".

The National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) has deployed 17 teams to Odisha and West Bengal as the approaching Cyclone Amphan threatens the two states.

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According to PTI, Pradhan said the trajectory of Cyclone Amphan is "mostly towards West Bengal, Sagar Islands and probably towards Bangladesh".

"This apart, we are keeping a close watch on the four coastal districts of Jagatsinghpur, Kendrapara, Bhadrak and Balasore", Special Relief Commissioner (SRC), P K Jena said. Ten units of the NDRF will be deployed, while another 10 units have been kept on standby.

Cyclone Amphan is likely to intensify further and move in a northwesterly direction, said Monwar Hossain. These teams are in six districts - South 24 Parganas, North 24 Parganas, East Midnapore, West Midnapore, Howrah and Hooghly.

He had a video conference with the district collectors of Ganjam, Gajapti, Puri, Jagatsinghpur, Kendrapara, Bhadrak, Balasore, Mayurbhanj, Jajpur, Cuttack, Khurda and Nayagarh.

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