The National Crisis Management Committee (NCMC) under the chairmanship of Cabinet Secretary, Shri Rajiv Gauba met to review the preparedness of Central and State/UT Governments and Agencies to deal with Cyclonic Storm ‘Yaas’ in the Bay of Bengal.
The Director General of the India Meteorological Department (IMD), briefed the committee about the latest status of the cyclone, which is expected to reach West Bengal and the adjoining Northern Odisha coasts by the evening of 26th May, with wind speeds ranging from 155 to 165 kmph, accompanied by heavy rainfall and storm surges in the coastal districts of these states.
The Chief Secretaries of the concerned States apprised the Committee of the preparatory measures put in place to deal with the cyclonic storm. Evacuation of people from the low lying areas is being carried out. Adequate stocks of foodgrains, drinking water and other essential supplies have been arranged and preparations made to maintain essential services such as Power, Telecommunications, etc.
NDRF has deployed/made available 65 teams and 20 more teams are on standby. Rescue and relief teams of the Army, Navy and Coast Guard along with ships and aircrafts have also been deployed.
Necessary arrangements are also being made to ensure uninterrupted functioning of hospitals and Covid Care Centres, along with ensuring generation and supply of oxygen to Covid facilities across the country.
Reviewing the preparedness of the Central and State agencies, Shri Rajiv Gauba stressed that all measures should be taken in a timely manner so that loss of life and destruction of property is minimized. He emphasised on the early evacuation of people from the areas likely to be affected by the cyclone alongwith ensuring the return of all boats/vessels to the shores,so that there is zero loss of life.
Shri Gauba also stressed that safety of Covid patients be ensured and disruption of the functioning of Covid hospitals and centres avoided. He also advised that steps be taken to maintain the generation and movement of oxygen from the cyclone-affected areas, to other parts of the country.
The Cabinet Secretary also said that preparatory arrangements should be made to restore power, telecom and other important services. He directed the concerned agencies to work in close co-ordination and extend all requisite assistance to the States/UTs.
The meeting was attended by the Chief Secretaries and officers of West Bengal, Odisha, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Andaman & Nicobar and Puducherry. Secretaries of Ministries of Home, Power, Shipping, Telecom, Petroleum & Natural Gas, Civil Aviation, Fisheries, Chairman Railway Board, Member Secretary NDMA, Chief IDS and DGs of Coast Guard, NDRF and IMD also participated in the meeting.