As Cyclone Fani made landfall on the Odisha coast on Friday morning much before the previous forecast, the Airports Authority of India revised the closure timing of Kolkata Airport as from 3:00 pm today to 8:00 am on Saturday (IST).
Earlier, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) had issued an advance order to cancel all flights to and from Kolkata between 9.30 pm on May 3 and 6 pm on May 4.
The DGCA has already cancelled for 24 hours starting May 3 midnight all flights to and from Bhubaneswar in view of the Cyclone Fani threat over the Bay of Bengal.
More than 200 flights are expected to be cancelled.
The Indian Railways has informed that it will run a special train from Visakhapatnam to Mumbai today to clear the stranded passengers affected by Cyclone Fani. The special train will run with the timings and stoppages of Konark Express(11020), it said.
As a precaution against cyclone Fani, the Indian Railways has cancelled 223 trains in the Bhadrak-Vizianagaram section, along the coastal lines of Odisha on the Kolkata-Chennai route till May 4, officials said.
A senior Railway Ministry official told IANS: “140 Mail and Express trains and 83 passenger trains have been cancelled till May 4 afternoon on the Bhadrak-Vizianagaram section (along Odisha coastline) of Kolkata-Chennai route.”
He said that nine trains have been diverted and four trains have been short terminated.
RAILWAYS HELPLINE NUMBERS DURING ORISSA CYCLONE FANI pic.twitter.com/tdh1yBwlbM
— Ministry of Railways (@RailMinIndia) May 2, 2019
Meanwhile, the India Meteorological Department informed that the extremely severe cyclone Fani has weakened into a ‘very severe’ cyclonic storm about 10 km east of Bhubaneswar and 30 km south of Cuttack.
Cyclone Fani made landfall on the eastern coast wreaking havoc in Odisha on Friday. Two people have been reportedly killed in cyclone-triggered incidents.
Damaging houses, thousands of trees and electricity poles, uprooting trees, the eye of Fani almost 25 km in diameter is sending off wind velocity of 150 to 175 kmph and even above at some places touching 180 or more, said the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD).
Large areas in Puri and other places have been submerged with water as heavy rains battered the entire coastal belt of the state.
The cyclone started crossing into the Odisha coast close to Puri between 8 am. and 10 am. on Friday. The process of landfall will continue until 1 pm.
Nearly 11 lakh people have been evacuated from the vulnerable areas to safer places in the last 24 hours in Odisha. Ganjam and Puri districts have evacuated more than 3 lakh and 1.3 lakh people, respectively.