Cyclone Yaas likely to be more severe than Amphan, may affect 20 Bengal districts: Mamata Banerjee

 Cyclone Yaas likely to be more severe than Amphan, may affect 20 Bengal districts: Mamata Banerjee

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Mamata Banerjee said West Bengal is targeting to shift at least 10 lakh people to safer places in a bid to avoid any loss of life

KOLKATA

Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said on Monday that the West Bengal government has made all necessary arrangements in dealing with the aftermath of cyclone Yaas, which might affect 20 districts of the state.

Addressing a press conference, Banerjee said the state is targeting to shift at least 10 lakh people to safer places in a bid to avoid any loss of life.

“Cyclone Yaas’s impact is going to be much more than Amphan, according to the information we have received so far. This is going to affect at least 20 districts in West Bengal. The districts of Kolkata, North and South 24 Parganas and Purba Medinipur will be severely affected,” she said.

The districts of Howrah, Hooghly, Bankura, Birbhum, Nadia, Paschim and Purba Bardhaman, Paschim Medinipur, Murshidabad, Jhargram, Purulia would also be affected by the cyclone, she said.

In Malda, Uttar and Dakshin Dinajpur, Darjeeling and Kalimpong there is a forecast of rain, Banerjee added.

The calamity will continue for 72 hours, she said.

“The state government has banned all forms of tourism in the coastal areas as well as fishing activities in the sea,” the chief minister said.

“District administrations and police have been asked to deal with violations strictly to prevent any loss of life,” she said.

At least 51 disaster management teams have been readied, keeping in view the possible devastations predicted by experts, Banerjee said.

Ferry services at 13 places have been shut, she said, assuring that the state has sufficient stock of relief materials that are kept ready at the block level.

“From Tuesday, we will continue surveillance for the next 48 hours from the control room at the state secretariat. Control rooms have also been made operational at district and sub-division levels,” the chief minister said.

Extensive plans have been adopted for hospitals and vaccine centres, Banerjee said, adding that all types of medicines — on diarrhea, fever, snake bites — have been asked to be kept ready.

At least 1,000 power restoration teams have been kept on stand-by and once the cyclone subsides, they will start working, she said.

“We have asked the Army, NDRF, SDRF to be on alert. All the agencies have been asked to be on stand-by so that we can use them when needed. We are ready for the cyclone,” Banerjee said.

“There is nothing to be scared of. We have taken all forms of precautionary measures. I will ask the people to cooperate and wear masks and maintain physical distance,” she said.

The Kolkata port said it will suspend all operations from May 25 till the cyclone subsides.

Kolkata Port Trust chairman Vinit Kumar said the decision was taken as a precautionary measure.

Agencies

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