Tamil Nadu braces for Cyclone Nivar, several trains cancelled


A well-marked, low-pressure area which was over the Bay of Bengal has concentrated into a depression and it is likely to intensify as a cyclonic storm Nivar in the next 24 hours and move towards Tamil Nadu and Puducherry. The Indian meteorological department has sounded a rain alert till 26 November and heavy to very heavy rain is expected in the delta and northern coastal areas of Tamil Nadu on 24 and 25 November.  

As windfall during the cyclonic system is expected up to 120 km in the areas of the state where it makes landfall, the meteorological department has advised fishermen not to venture into the sea for fishing. IMD director Balachandran has said at 1:30pm, the depression was 520 km from Chennai and it is expected to make landfall on 26 November between Mahabalipuram in Tamil Nadu and Karaikal area.

The Chief Minster called a meeting with all the important ministers and officials to discuss the preparedness for the cyclone. State revenue minister R.B. Udaykumar who met the press today said that specific instructions been given to the district collectors to take mitigation works at the earliest and also added that six companies of NDRF personnel stationed in Arakkonam have been immediately moved to Cuddalore district and another two companies have been kept ready to handle any situation.      

As per reports, six trains have been fully cancelled and nine partially cancelled in Tamil Nadu. The South Central Railway said the Bhubaneswar-Puducherry-Bhubaneswar trains have been partially cancelled between Chennai Egmore and Puducherry on November 24 and 25. The Puducherry-Howrah express has been cancelled partially between Puducherry and Villupuram on November 25.

Tamil Nadu electricity minister Thangamani said that there will be power interruption in the areas between Mahabalipuram and Karaikal when the cyclone makes landfall and close to one and lakh electric posts and electricity board workers are kept on standby to handle any eventualities.

Weather enthusiasts predict that the cyclone system Nivar is not likely to cause the kind of damage that Cyclone Gaja caused in the delta areas of the state.