Ahead of the possible formation of a cyclone over the central Bay of Bengal on March 21, Union Home Secretary on Thursday reviewed the preparedness of central ministries and agencies and the administration of Andaman and Nicobar. Heavy rain and strong winds are expected to hit the islands. Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) on Thursday informed that the low-pressure area in the southeast of the Bay of Bengal is likely to develop into a cyclonic storm by March 21.
Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) in its official statement informed that one team of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) has been deployed in Port Blair and that additional teams are on standby and will be airlifted if required. The administration of Andaman and Nicobar is prepared with sufficient stocks of emergency supplies, and contingency measures to protect the population and to restore infrastructure, the Ministry informed on Wednesday.
Fishing, tourism and shipping activities have been stopped in the islands. Fishermen have been advised to return from sea. Indian Army, Navy, Air Force and Indian Coast Guard have been asked to be on standby, Ministry of Home Affairs stated.
IMD on Thursday said in a tweet, “The Low-Pressure Area over central parts of south Bay of Bengal moved east-northeastwards and lay centred at 08:30 hours IST of today the 17th March over southeast Bay of Bengal and adjoining east Equatorial Indian Ocean.”
“It is likely continue to move east-northeastwards, become a well-marked low-pressure area and lie over southeast Bay of Bengal and adjoining south Andaman Sea by 19th March morning. Thereafter, it is likely to move nearly northwards along and off Andaman and Nicobar Islands…,” the tweet read. “….intensify into a depression by morning of 20th March and into a cyclonic storm on 21st March. Thereafter, it is likely to move nearly north-northeastwards and reach near Bangladesh-north Myanmar coasts around morning of 22nd March, 2022,” IMD said in other tweet.
The meteorological department has said mainland India will remain unaffected by the cyclone as the its course is predicted to be towards Bangladesh and north Myanmar. The cyclone will move past the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, bringing heavy rainfall on March 20 and 21.