Rashmi Rekha Das

With Odisha bracing up for possible cyclonic storm Sitrang, the State Chief Secretary has convened an emergency meeting today.

Chief Secretary Suresh Chandra Mohapatra will hold a high-level meeting with other stakeholders at 5pm today to review the preparedness of different departments amid increasing threat of the probable cyclone in coastal areas of the State. 

According to the latest information provided by India Meteorological Department, a low pressure area has formed over the southeast and adjoining Eastcentral Bay of Bengal under the influence of the cyclonic circulation over north Andaman Sea and neighbourhood. The system is likely to move west-northweswards and concentrate into a depression by October 22 morning and deep depression on October 23 over the central Bay of Bengal (BoB). 

Live Updates | Cyclone Sitrang to trigger heavy rainfall in coastal districts of Odisha: IMD DG

Subsequently, it is very likely to intensify further into a cyclonic storm over westcentral and adjoining eastcentral Bay of Bengal by October 24, said Meteorological sources.

Going by GFS model of IMD, cyclone Sitrang may make landfall in Odisha. However, IMD is yet to make any forecast in this regard.

The Director of Regional Meteorological Department said further forecast can be made after the system will turn into deep depression.

Meanwhile, Special Relief Commissioner has alerted the Collectors of seven districts that may face the wrath of cyclone Sitrang. Districts such as Ganjam, Puri, Khurda, Jagatsinghpur, Kendrapara, Bhadrak and Balesore may be impacted by the impending cyclone.

Besides, IMD has warned fishermen not to venture into the sea.

Revenue Minister Pramilla Mallick said, “In view of the possible cyclone over Bay of Bengal, the state government has directed the collectors of 30 districts to remain alert. The district administrations have been asked to keep adequate storage of medicines, drinking water and boats to meet with any kind of eventualities arising out of the possible cyclone.”

She further went on to add: “Also, the administrations have been told to keep cyclone shelter centres, schools, colleges and Kalyan Mandaps ready to shelter cyclone victims. The government is well prepared to face the cyclone. We are keeping an eye on seven districts and the concerned collectors have been asked to undertake all preparedness measures in advance to reduce the impacts.”