NEW DELHI: Cabinet Secretary Rajiv Gauba on Tuesday assured Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Puducherry to provide assistance from all central agencies to deal with the possible cyclonic storm over the Bay of Bengal.
Reviewing preparedness measures to deal with the cyclonic storm in the National Crisis Management Committee (NCMC), Gauba said, "All central agencies are ready and will be available for assistance."
Gauba also stressed that preventive and precautionary measures should be taken by concerned authorities of states and the Union Territory governments and concerned central agencies, emphasising "the aim should be to keep the loss of lives to zero and minimize damage to property and infrastructure such as power and telecom".
"In case of damage to infrastructure, it must be restored in the quickest possible time," said Gauba while chairing the NCMC meet in which he reviewed the preparedness of central ministries, agencies, and the state as well as UT governments to handle the possible cyclonic storm over the Bay of Bengal.
Director General, India Meteorological Department (IMD), briefed the Committee about the current status of the weather system in the Bay of Bengal, which is likely to move West-Northwestwards and concentrate into a Depression over South East Bay of Bengal by Tuesday evening.
Thereafter, it is likely to continue to move West-Northwestwards, intensify further into a cyclonic storm around December 7 evening and reach South West Bay of Bengal off North Tamil Nadu-Puducherry and adjoining South Andhra Pradesh coasts by December 8 morning.
It will continue to move West-Northwestwards towards North Tamil Nadu-Puducherry and adjoining South Andhra Pradesh coasts during the subsequent 48 hours.
Chief Secretaries of Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and senior officials from Puducherry apprised the Committee of preparatory measures being taken to protect the population in the expected path of the cyclonic storm and measures being taken by the local administration, such as fishermen being asked not to venture out into the sea and calling those at sea back to safe berth and emergency services being kept in readiness.
National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) informed in the meeting that it has made five teams available to Tamil Nadu and three teams for Puducherry as asked for by them and teams are also being kept on standby for Andhra Pradesh to be activated as and when the State Government desires.
Rescue and relief teams of the Army and Navy along with ships and aircraft have been kept ready on standby.
The Coast Guard is also ready with its ships. The meeting was attended by the Chief Secretaries of Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu and senior officials from Puducherry, the Union Home Secretary, Additional Secretary of Ministry of Power, DG Telecom, Member Secretary NDMA, CISC IDS, IG NDRF, DG IMD, DG Coast Guard and senior officers from the Ministry of Home Affairs.