Cyclone Amphan, in the Bay of Bengal, has turned into an extremely severe cyclonic storm at 2:30 am on Monday, said a weather official. The weather forecast body further predicts it may intensify further to a “super cyclone” in the next 12 hours and may make a landfall in Bengal on Wednesday. The cyclonic storm ‘Amphan’ (pronounced as UM-PUN) is moving over Southeast Bay of Bengal and neighbourhood and has been turning north-northwestwards with a speed of 6 kmph over past six hours, it said.
The India Meteorological Department or IMD said in a statement, “The extremely severe cyclonic storm ”Amphan”, moving with a speed of 13 kmph over west-central and adjoining central parts of south Bay of Bengal, is likely to gain more strength and intensify further into a super cyclonic storm in the next 12 hours.”
According to the latest bulletin released by IMD, Bay of Bengal will remain rough over southwest and adjoining central during the next 24 hours and will become phenomenal over southern parts of the sea from tonight. during the next 24 hours, light to moderate rainfall may happen at most places and is very likely over Andaman & Nicobar Islands, said the IMD.
The cyclonic storm will move towards north-northeast direction and cross Digha (West Bengal)-Hathiya island (Bangladesh) on the afternoon/evening of May 20 with a wind speed of 155-165 kmph, says IMD director general, Delhi.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi called a meeting today at 4 pm to discuss the readiness. Union Home Minister Amit Shah tweeted that “To review the arising cyclone situation in various parts of the country, PM @narendramodi ji will chair a high level meeting with MHA & NDMA, today at 4pm.”
Fishermen were advised not to go into the central Bay of Bengal and the North Bay of Bengal during May 19 and 20, said the Weather department. The National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) is monitoring the situation and closely working with the states and their disaster management teams and the IMD. Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnail directed the officials to prepare a plan for relocating people living in the vulnerable areas.