Cyclone Vayu turned 'very severe'; will remain strong even after landfall
New Delhi: An alert has been sounded in 10 districts of Gujarat as Cyclone Vayu has turned "very severe" and its impact is expected to remain strong for 24 hours even after its landfall Thursday, officials said.
As many as 52 teams of the National Disaster Management Relief Force (NDRF), comprising around 45 rescuers each, have been moved to the state, while 10 columns of the Indian Army have been kept on stand-by.
Warships and aircraft of the Indian Navy have been kept standby as well.
A general alert has been sounded across 10 district in Gujarat as wind speeds are likely to touch 170 km per hour, a Home Ministry official said.
Vayu has turned into a "very severe" cyclone and it is expected that its impact will continue to be strong for 24 hours even after the landfall -- between Porbandar and Union territory Diu, the official said.
Normally a cyclone becomes weak after its landfall.
Residents of some of the Gujarat districts have been asked to move out to safer places or cyclone shelter centres.
Meanwhile, Home Secretary Rajiv Gauba Wednesday chaired a meeting of the National Crisis Management Committee (NCMC) where preparation for relief and rescue operations were discussed threadbare.
The NCMC meeting took stock of the precautionary measures taken by the Gujarat government and Diu UT administration with a view to ensure that no human life is lost, damage to vital infrastructure is minimised and to ensure early recovery of all essential services post-cyclone landfall.
Diving and rescue teams and relief materials have been kept on standby for rendering assistance to civil authorities, as required, another official said.
Medical teams and facilities at Indian Naval hospital in Mumbai are on standby to handle medical emergencies.
Both the administrations have also been advised for timely evacuation of people from low-lying coastal and vulnerable areas.
The Gujarat and Diu administration are evacuating about 3 lakh people from the identified vulnerable areas and they are being shifted to around 700 cyclone and relief shelters.