After wreaking havoc in Lakshadweep, Kerala and Parts of Tamil Nadu, Cyclone Ockhi is set to hit Mumbai and Surat and adjacent areas of Gujarat. The areas surrounding Mumbai has been witnessing rains and hailstorm. Schools and colleges have been directed to remain closed. Traffic was affected even as some parts of the Munbai-Pune Expressway was hit by a strong spell of hailstorm. The National Crisis Management Committee (NCMC) has taken note of another depression being formed in South East Bay of Bengal adjoining South Andaman Sea, in the wake of Cyclone Ockhi creating havoc in the southern states of India. The cyclonic storm, Ockhi, over east central Arabian sea has moved further northwards with a speed of 13 kmph early morning today. It is very likely to move North-North Eastward and weaken gradually. It will then cross coasts of south Gujarat and adjoining North Maharashtra near Surat as a deep depression by midnight of December 5. Notably, Asserting that the BJP governments at Centre and Gujarat are prepared to tackle the situation when Cyclone Ockhi makes a landfall on state’s coast today, PM Modi has taken a jibe at the Congress over its “inefficient handling” of natural calamities in the past.
Mumbai school and colleges shut:
After an alert by the IMD Mumbai observatory, the state government has announced a holiday today for schools in Mumbai, Sindhudurg, Thane, Raigad and Palghar districts.
The traffic on Eastern and Western Express Highways in Mumbai has slowed down after rain in some parts of Mumbai throughout last night. There are traffic curbs in some places in view of the rush of followers of Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar on his death anniversary tomorrow. The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has made arrangements for accommodation in some civic schools for people coming from outside Mumbai to pay tributes to Ambedkar at Chaityabhumi in Dadar area.
Mumbai Weather forecast:
The weather department has forecast intermittent rains in Mumbai and suburbs in the next 24 hours. “Intermittent rain/thundershowers very likely to occur in Mumbai and suburbs in next 24 hours,” said a report of the India Meteorological. Department (IMD) Mumbai at 8 am. “Heavy rainfall is likely at a few places with squally wind speed reaching 50 to 60 kms per hour gusting to 70 kms per hour very likely along coastal area in next 24 hours,” it further said. A few spells of rain or thundershowers are likely to occur in the city and suburbs in next 48 hours, the IMD said.
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The Western Railway (WR) has said it has taken necessary precautions and made suitable arrangements in view of the warning about cyclone Ockhi in coastal areas of Maharashtra. The WR’s engineering control has been kept on alert to keep a watch on water level over railway tracks, accoridng to reports. Similarly, RPF and commercial control staff has been asked to monitor crowd movements and undertake necessary evacuation at stations in case of a disaster-like situation, the release said. Patrolling of the tracks has been intensified over various rail sections. The Disaster Management Cell of WR is geared up to deal with any emergency, the report said.