Amphan intensifies into super cyclone. New Delhi-Bhubaneswar special train will run on a diverted route. IMD issued an orange alert for coastal WB and Odisha
New Delhi, May 18, 2020 (IANS)
The India Meteorological Department on Monday said that extremely severe cyclonic storm “Amphan” over the west and central parts of Bay of Bengal has intensified into a “super cyclone” with wind speed above 200 km per hour. Due to the weather condition, heavy rainfall is expected to hit coastal Odisha by Monday evening and West Bengal’s coast the following day, IMD’s in-charge for cyclones, Sunita Devi said.
The super cyclone currently lay centred at about 770 km south of Odisha’s Paradip, 920 km south-southwest of West Bengal’s Digha and 1,040 km south-southwest of Bangladesh’s Khepupara.
In the wake of the threat posed by cyclone Amphan, the Indian Railways on Monday said that the New Delhi-Bhubaneswar special train will run on a diverted route for the next four days.
A senior Railway Ministry official said that the Bhubaneswar-New Delhi-Bhubaneswar AC Special Train starting from Bhubaneswar from May 19 to 22 and from New Delhi from May 18 to 21 will run on the Bhubaneswar-Angul-Sambalpur City-Jharsuguda-Rourkela-Tata route and bypass the Bhadrak-Balasore-Hijli route.
He said the step was taken to ensure the safety and security of both passengers and trains.
The official said that passengers going from and coming to Baleswar/Hijli (Kharagpur) will not get to avail of the services of this train for four days due to route diversion.
Amphan cyclone is very likely to move nearly northwards for some more time and then north-northeastwards across the northwest Bay of Bengal and cross West Bengal-Bangladesh coasts between Digha in West Bengal and Hatiya islands in Bangladesh close to Sundarbans during the or afternoon-evening of May 20.
According to Vineet Kumar, a researcher at Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology, this is the first time that super cyclones have been recorded in two consecutive years, Kyarr in 2019 and Amphan this year.
The IMD has issued an orange alert for coastal West Bengal and Odisha, where it said widespread damage is expected.
The weather agency said that there could be extensive damage to kutcha and old or damaged pucca constructions, uprooting of communications and power transmission poles, disruption of rail and road links, crops and plantations are expected. Large boats, ships can also get torn from moorings.