India meteorological department (IMD) on Monday forecasted a cyclonic storm along Goa's coastline within the next 12 to 24 hours with the wind speed reaching 40-50 kmph at isolated places due to a deep depression in the Arabian Sea. The fishermen have been advised not to venture into Southeast Arabian Sea, Lakshadweep area, along and off Kerala and Karnataka coasts.
According to the IMD, the cyclone is likely to move almost northwards and cross Gujarat coast between Porbandar and Mahuva around Veraval & Diu region as a Severe Cyclonic Storm with wind speed 110-120 kmph gusting to 135 kmph during early morning of June 13, 2019.
The wind speeds will also increase over the next three days. The State authorities have swung into action, ordering closure of schools for three days in coastal districts and deploying teams of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and asking fishermen to return to the coast from high seas.
According to Additional Chief Secretary, Revenue, Pankaj Kumar, "We have alerted all district collectors of coastal Gujarat to take immediate steps keeping in mind the likelihood of a cyclone". The government is also likely to keep the Army, the Navy and the Coast Guard on standby, as per PTI reports.
D Sivananda Pai, head of the IMD's long-range forecasting said, "Progress of the monsoon seems unlikely till 15-16 June because the cyclone will drag moisture away".
The cyclone is expected to be closest to the Saurashtra Coast by June 12 and between June 12 and June 14, the western-most parts of Saurashtra and Kutch region in Gujarat could witness squally winds and heavy to very heavy rains, MeT officials said.
Union Home Minister Amit Shah chaired a high-level meeting to review the preparedness of state and central agencies today.
Gujarat is at present reeling under severe heat wave as the maximum temperature in major cities, including Ahmedabad, has been over 43 degrees Celsius since the last week of May.
The setting of monsoon will be further delayed over Gujarat after the cyclonic storm, he said.