Pradeep Pattanayak

If the predictions of weathermen are anything to go by, rain is likely to play a spoilsport during Durga Puja in the state. 

As per the India Meteorological Department (IMD), a cyclonic circulation lies over the Southeast Bay of Bengal and the adjoining Andaman Sea and it is likely to move west-northwestwards. Under its influence, a low-pressure area is likely to form over Central parts of the Bay of Bengal around October 20. 

As per the forecast, rain may start from the ‘Shashthi’ of the puja itself. However, no predictions have been released about the parts of the state that may receive rainfall on ‘Navami’ and ‘Dashami’.  

No clarity yet on rainfall


“A cyclonic circulation over Southeast Bay of Bengal and adjoining Andaman Sea is likely to move west-northwest-wards. Under its influence, a low-pressure area is likely to form around October 20 or 21. But it is too early to say which part of the state will be affected,” said Umashankar Das, a scientist at the Bhubaneswar Regional Centre of the IMD. 

On the other hand, weather scientist Sarat Chandra Sahu said coastal and south Odisha may witness rainfall activities first, and subsequently the quantum of rain may increase in coastal and northern districts. 

“The picture will be clearer on October 21-22. However, initial calculations say Odisha may witness rain from October 23rd till 26th or 27th. The indications show the predicted low-pressure area is likely to intensify into a depression. But it is difficult to say whether it will intensify or not,” said Sahu. 

IMD’s predictions leave puja organisers worried 


The predictions of the weather department have left the puja organisers in a state of worry. October being a month of cyclones for Odisha, last year too, rain accompanied by wind pulled down some pandals, and some others remained inundated. Keeping this in mind, the organisers have started taking measures. 

“The structure we are erecting will withstand a wind speed of 70 to 80 kmph. If it exceeds, there may be some damages. But, all of us have the blessings of Maa (Goddess Durga), so nothing of that sort will happen,” said the secretary of the Sahid Nagar Durga Puja Committee, Sachhidananda Nayak. 

Echoing the same, Phiringi Bazaar Puja Committee’s secretary Naresh Sahu said, “We have become accustomed to rains during puja time. We have taken measures accordingly. But, if rain persists, footfalls and the immersion ceremony may get affected.”

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