Coastal Tamil Nadu is bracing for heavy rain and strong winds after weathermen warned that the depression over the Bay of Bengal is likely to intensify into a cyclone and cross the coast at around 6 am on Wednesday. According to the regional weather office, the depression is around 520 kilometre south of Chennai at 5 pm. Six teams of the National Disaster Rescue Force have been sent to Cuddalore and Chidambaram districts in Tamil Nadu. The National Crisis Management Committee reviewed the status and preparations of Cyclone Nivar.
The chief of India Meteorological department, in a video on Twitter, gave the latest updates on the cyclone.
The Met forecasts extremely heavy rainfall in coastal Chennai, including Tamil Nadu. Windspeed is expected to be 100 to 110 kilometre per hour during landfall. Fishermen have been advised to stay away from the sea.
"We have asked people in low lying areas to shift to safe zones. Our monitoring officers are alert as rainfall is expected between six to 12 cm in some districts, 12 to 20 cm in others and above 20 cm in few areas," Revenue Minister RB Udhayakumar, who also heads the disaster management department told NDTV.
In the ports including Cuddalore, Chennai and Tuticorin local cautionary signal No. 3 has been hoisted.
For a specific query on the position of Chembarambakkam Lake outside Chennai, which was close it's full capacity recently, the state minister said, "The inflow to the lake has reduced, there is no worry at the moment". In 2015, unprecedented rain and release of waters from this lake had led to floods in Chennai.