The government on Thursday ordered an immediate halt of fishing, tourism and shipping activities in the Union Territory of Andaman and Nicobar Islands and kept the Army, the Navy and the Air Force on standby in view of the impending cyclone which is likely to hit the archipelago early next week.
A high-level meeting, chaired by Union Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla, reviewed the preparedness for the impending cyclone which is likely to make landfall on March 21.
One National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) is already stationed in Port Blair while additional teams are ready to be airlifted from the mainland if required, an official spokesperson said.
The Andaman and Nicobar Islands administration is gearing up with sufficient stocks of emergency supplies and taking steps to protect the population and restoration of infrastructure, he said.
Fishing, tourism and shipping activities were stopped and fishermen were advised to return from sea. The army, the navy, the air force and the coast guards were asked to remain on standby, the spokesperson said.
All central ministries are ready to provide assistance to the UT administration if required, he said. The India Meteorological Department has informed the meeting that low pressure area in South East Bay of Bengal is likely to intensify into a cyclonic storm by March 21 with wind speeds of 70-80 kmph gusting up to 90 kmph. The home secretary directed the central ministries and agencies to keep regular watch and be in touch with the Andaman and Nicobar Islands administration. PTI ACB ACB AQS AQS PTI