Rajiv Gauba, the Cabinet Secretary on Saturday, chaired a meeting of the National Crisis Management Committee (NCMC) over the impending Cyclone Yaas. He directed concerned states to ensure that all boats and vessels return before the storm hits India’s eastern shore on May 26.
The meeting was attended by the chief secretaries and officers of West Bengal, Odisha, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Andaman and Nicobar Islands and Puducherry. Secretaries of Ministries of Home, Power, Shipping, Telecom, Petroleum and Natural Gas, Civil Aviation and Fisheries along with the Railway Board chairman, NDMA Member Secretary, IDS chief and DGs of the Coast Guard, NDRF and IMD also participated.
The IMD DG briefed the committee about the latest status of the storm, which is expected to reach the coasts of West Bengal and Odisha Coast on May 26 evening, with wind speeds ranging from 155 to 165 kmph, accompanied by heavy rainfall and storm surges in the coastal districts of these states.
“Reviewing the preparedness of the Central and State agencies, Shri Rajiv Gauba stressed that the measures should be taken in a timely manner so that the loss of life and destruction of property is minimized. He emphasized on the early evacuation of people from the areas likely to be affected by the cyclone along with ensuring the return of all boats and vessels to the shores, so that there is zero loss of life,” said the Ministry of Home Affairs in an official statement.
Gauba highlighted that safety of COVID patient be ensured and disruption of functioning of COVID hospitals and centres be avoided. He advised that steps be taken to maintain the generation and movement of oxygen from the affected areas to other parts of the country. “The Cabinet Secretary also said that preparatory arrangements should be made to restore power, telecom and other important services. He directed the concerned agencies to work in close co-ordination and extend all requisite assistance to the States and UTs,” the MHA statement said.
Meanwhile, as per sources, evacuation of foodgrains, drinking water and other essential supplies have been arranged and preparations are on to maintain essential services such as power and telecommunications. The NDRF has deployed 65 teams and 20 more teams are on standby. Rescue and relief teams of the Army, Navy, and Coast Guard along with ships and aircrafts have also been deployed.