Mrunal Manmay Dash

With the India Meteorological Department (IMD) predicting possible formation of the first cyclonic storm of 2023 in the Southeast Bay of Bengal, curiosity about the name of the cyclone has reached its peak.

As per reports, upon its intensification into a Cyclonic Storm, the system will be named Cyclone ‘Mocha’. Yes, you guessed it right. The name Mocha sounds exactly like the espresso coffee variety. 

Mocha is a shot of espresso which is combined with a chocolate powder or syrup, followed by milk or cream. It is a variant of a latte.

The Name Mocha, recommended by Yemen, originates from the Yemeni city Mocha (or Mokha) located on the Red Sea coast. Long known for its coffee trade, the port city also gave its name to the famous Mocha coffee.

So, Why Mocha?

The naming of this cyclone or any cyclone in the Indian Ocean region for that matter is done as per the decree issued by the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO), which states that each cyclone must be named to avoid confusion in instances where multiple systems operate in one location.

Around the world, six Regional Specialised Meteorological Centres (RSMCs) and five Regional Tropical Storm Warning Centres (TCWCs) are authorised to issue tropical cyclone advisories and names.

The India Meteorological Department (IMD) is the RSMC responsible to issue advisories for countries in South and Southeast Asia. These include India, Bangladesh, Iran, Myanmar, Maldives, Oman, Pakistan, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Sri Lanka, Thailand, United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Yemen.

The IMD invites names from each of the 13 countries and 13 such lists are prepared to name them one by one. The latest cyclone nomenclature published by the IMD has 169 names with 13 names each from all the countries in the group.

So far, 12 names from the current compilation’s List 1 — Nisarga, Gati, Nivar, Burevi, Tauktae, Yaas, Gulab, Shaheen, Jawad, Asani, Sitrang and Mandous — have already been used, with ‘Mocha’ set to be the next in line.