Cyclone Phethai: Rain lashes Odisha, more in store over next 12 hours

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December 18, 2018 12:36 PM

As many as 11,600 people were evacuated in Gajapati district even as houses ravaged by Cyclone Titli in October are yet to be fully repaired, a senior official at the Special Relief Commissinor's (SRC) office said.

Heeding the state government’s advice, farmers in many parts of Odisha have taken precautionary measures to protect crops from the rain.

Rainfall, coupled with squally winds, lashed several parts of Odisha Tuesday under the impact of Cyclone Phethai that barrelled through coastal Andhra Pradesh. The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has forecast isolated heavy to very heavy rainfall in south Odisha and heavy rainfall in western region till Wednesday as the cyclonic storm weakened gradually.

“The depression over north coastal Andhra Pradesh moved in north-north-east direction and weakened into a well marked low pressure area and lay over north-west and adjoining west-central Bay of Bengal and Odisha Tuesday morning,” Director of the Meteorological Centre here, H R Biswas said. It is likely to weaken further into a low pressure area during the next 12 hours, he said. While inclement weather affected normal life in many parts of south and western Odisha, no casualty was reported, a senior official said, adding power supply was disrupted in some areas. As many as 11,600 people were evacuated in Gajapati district even as houses ravaged by Cyclone Titli in October are yet to be fully repaired, a senior official at the Special Relief Commissinor’s (SRC) office said.

Also Read: Cyclone Phethai: More rain forecast for West Bengal till Wednesday

People from seven vulnerable blocks in Gajapati district have been accommodated in safer places. The official said relief camps have been opened and evacuated people are being provided food and other essentials. “We shifted the people because it is dangerous staying in half-constructed houses during the calamity,” the official said. Rainfall, accompanied by strong surface wind, lashed several parts of Malkangiri, Koraput, Gajapati, Ganjam, Rayagada and Kalahandi districts, the Met office said. Heeding the state government’s advice, farmers in many parts of Odisha have taken precautionary measures to protect crops from the rain.

However, farmers still suffered considerable loss due to the rain which damaged standing paddy and cotton crops along with harvested paddy stocks stashed in open fields. Squally winds with speed reaching 40 kmph and gusting up to 50 kmph are likely to sweep South Odisha coast during the next 12 hours. Rainfall is likely to subside after Wednesday afternoon, it said.

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