As the depression in the Bay of Bengal intensified into a deep depression bringing rainfall in Odisha and West Bengal, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) on Friday rejected the possibility of any cyclone now.
Social media was flooded with posts on the possibility of a cyclone following the US Joint Typhoon Warning Center’s (JTWC) warning on Thursday that the system has the potential to intensify into a cyclone.
“There is no possibility of a cyclone this time. We have never said that the system will take the shape of a cyclone,” IMD Director General Mrutunjay Mohapatra told PTI.
The system will move along the coast as a deep depression at a wind speed of 60 to 65 kmph and it is unlikely to intensify further, he said.
The system, which lay about 200 km east-southeast of Balasore in Odisha and 100 km southeast of Sagar Island in West Bengal at 11.30 am, will move west-northwestwards across north Odisha, West Bengal, and Jharkhand towards north Chhattisgarh as a deep depression.
Under its influence, squally surface wind reaching up to 55-65 kmph is expected in coastal areas and 30-40 kmph in interior districts of Odisha.
“North Odisha will receive the maximum rainfall today while rain intensity will increase in western districts tomorrow,” Mohapatra said.
Odisha’s Special Relief Commissioner (SRC) P K Jena told reporters that the IMD has not given any indication of a cyclone.
“Our experts have studied both models of the IMD and the JTWC. Both indicate that the system will pass through the same track. We conclude that the system will remain contained within a deep depression,” Jena said.
He said that the state would like to go with the IMD forecast.
“This apart, the JTWC has nowhere said that the system will take the shape of a cyclone. It mentioned that it has the potential to become a cyclonic storm,” Jena pointed out.
Meanwhile, the IMD has issued a Red warning for heavy to very heavy rainfall, with isolated extremely heavy falls, for Keonjhar, Bhadrak, Balasore, and Mayurbhanj districts till 8.30 am on August 20.
It has also forecast heavy to very heavy rainfall at a few places in districts such as Kendrapada, Jagatsinghpur, Cuttack, Dhenkanal, Angul, Deogarh, Sundargarh, Sambalpur, Sonepur, Boudh, Balangir and Jajpur during this period.
An orange warning also continues for the subsequent 24 hours with a forecast for heavy to very heavy rainfall at one or two places in Jharsuguda, Sundargarh, Keonjhar, Deogarh, Sambalpur, Bargarh, Sonepur, and Bolangir districts.
Heavy rainfall is very likely to occur at isolated places in Mayurbhanj, Angul, Boudh, Kalahandi, Nuapada, Nabarangpur, and Dhenkanal districts, the IMD said.
(Inputs from PTI)