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Fishing operations suspended in southern districts after alert
Fishing operations have been suspended in the wake of cyclone alert issued by the Meteorological Department off southern coastal districts in Thoothukudi, Tirunelveli, Ramanathapuram and Kanniyakumari. Fishermen have been advised not to venture into sea since Thursday evening citing that weather could be rough at sea.
Around 350 mechanised boats and over 4,000 country crafts across 21 coastal villages in Thoothukudi remain anchored at shore, sources said.
As for Ramanathapuram district, which has a total populace of around 1.70 lakh fishermen from 180 coastal villages, saw fishing suspended following the cyclone warning.
Regional Deputy Director of Ramanathapuram E Kathavarayan, said referring to the IMD forecast, that depression formed over Bay of Bengal might intensify into cyclone. Weather at sea could be rough towards southwesterly direction. The cyclone could cause its impact in an anti-clockwise manner, he added.
At present, the wind velocity is 33 km per hour off Ramnad coast, but it was predicted to go up to 115 km to 120 km. Control rooms were set up at three locations including Rameswaram, Mandapam and Ramnad to assist any fisherman in distress. Besides, fishermen were being asked continuously to stay away from sea through public address system through village level co-management committees, religious sites and also through ‘Kadalosai’ FM radio at frequent intervals. Moreover, the fishermen were also being alerted on weather conditions through ‘Fishermen Friendly Mobile App’, which was launched with efforts from Fisheries Department along with MS Swaminathan Research Foundation. Besides, text messages on weather alert were also being forwarded through Information Centre, he said.
In Kanniyakumari district, except for some boats around 200 vessels were in deep sea, but safe in the Arabian sea, most of the fleet of over 2,000 boats remain anchored off 42 coastal villages, sources said.