As cyclone 'Biparjoy' headed northwards and remained centred about 900 km south-southwest of Gujarat's coastal Porbandar district, fishermen have been asked to return to the coast from deep sea areas and ports instructed to hoist Distant Warning signal (DW II), said officials on Thursday.
The first cyclone in the Arabian Sea this year is expected to bring light showers and thunderstorms in coastal regions of the state.
According to the latest weather bulletin issued by the India Meteorological Department (IMD), the "very severe cyclonic storm "Biparjoy" over the east-central Arabian Sea is currently centred at 930 km south-southwest of Porbandar and moving north-northwestward".
"Due to the cyclone, the wind speed may go up to 45 to 55 knots on June 10,11 and 12. The speed may also touch the 65-knot mark. The cyclone would bring light rains and thunderstorms in coastal regions, including south Gujarat and Saurashtra. All ports have been asked to hoist Distant Warning signal," said Director of IMD's Meteorological Centre in Ahmedabad, Manorama Mohanty.
In accordance with international procedure, ports are advised to hoist "signals" whenever adverse weather is expected over them in oceanic areas. The step seeks to alert vessels and ensure the safety of maritime activities.
District collectors of the coastal region are geared up to face any eventuality in the coming days.
Jamnagar collector BA Shah said nearly 76,000 people reside in 22 villages situated on the coastline of the district and elaborate plans are in place to shift them to safer places if need arises.
"In view of the formation of a cyclone in the Arabian Sea, all district as well as taluka officials have been asked to remain stationed at their headquarters until further orders. Fishermen registered in the district have already returned to the coast. If need arises, we will shift 76,000 people living near the coast to safer places," said Shah.
Amreli collector Ajay Dahiya said the district administration, if required, will work closely with the Coast Guard to prevent loss of lives.
"A district-level disaster control room has been activated. Officials of two coastal talukas - Rajula and Jafrabad - have been instructed to stay alert. Fishermen have been asked to return to shore as wind speed may reach up to 160 km per hour in the sea on June 11 and 12.
In case of an emergency, we will work closely with the Coast Guard to save human lives," Dahiya said.
On Wednesday, Gujarat relief commissioner Alok Kumar Pandey said the state administration was geared up to deal with potential natural calamities during the monsoon season.
The senior bureaucrat had said 15 teams of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and 11 of the State Disaster Response Force (SDRF) have been put on standby for rain relief operations in Gujarat.