WATCH Cyclone Vayu | Strong winds, dust hit Somnath temple in Gujarat

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Updated: June 12, 2019 7:04:52 PM

The authorities have so far shifted over 1.60 lakh people from low-lying areas of Saurashtra and Kutch regions to safer places. They have also suspended the operations at ports and airports as a precautionary measure.

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Cyclone Vayu: Strong winds and dust hit the Somnath temple in Gir Somnath district today ahead of the landfall of Cyclone Vayu. The cyclonic storm, which is expected to hit Gujarat tomorrow, advanced towards Saurashtra and Kutch regions on Wednesday. The authorities have so far shifted over 1.60 lakh people from low-lying areas of Saurashtra and Kutch regions to safer places. They have also suspended the operations at ports and airports as a precautionary measure.

The latest weather report suggests that Cyclone Vayu has turned into a ‘very severe cyclonic storm’ and has changed its course slightly and would now hit Gujarat coast anywhere between Veraval and Dwarka in the afternoon Thursday. After making the landfall, the cyclonic storm is expected to move along and parallel to Saurashtra and Kutch coast.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday advised people to follow real-time information and stay safe. In a tweet, he said: “Praying for the safety and wellbeing of all those affected by Cyclone Vayu. The government and local agencies are providing real-time information, which I urge those in affected areas to closely follow.” In a weather bulletin, the India Meteorological Department said that Cyclone Vayu has turned into a very severe cyclonic storm and it would cause gusty winds to blow at a speed of 145 kmph to 170 kmph by Thursday morning.

Teams of the National Disaster Response Force started landing in the state with the help of the Indian Air Force to undertake the preventive evacuation of people living on the west coast.

Additional Chief Secretary Pankaj Kumar informed that 36 teams of NDRF have been deployed and 11 teams ready. Apart from this, nine teams of state disaster response force, 14 companies of SRP and 300 marine commandos have also been pressed into service. Nine helicopters placed at strategic points and 10,000 tourists have been shifted.

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