Cyclone Fani live updates: Remaining on course, extremely severe Cyclone Fani hit the Puri coast in Odisha on Friday morning around 8 am, with heavy rain and strong winds lashing Odisha and parts of Andhra Pradesh. A wind speed of 145 km per hour was recorded, according to the India Meteorology Department (IMD).
At least three people, including a 65-year-old woman, were killed. The woman died at a cyclone shelter in Devendranarayanpur under Rajnagar block of Kendrapara.
The entire coastal belt was plunged into darkness and damage to power supply systems were extensive. Puri was cut off from the rest of the world as were several other places due to collapse of mobile phone towers, electricity poles and trees blocking the roads.
Almost all kuchha houses in Puri, Khurda, Cuttack, Bhubaneswar and the coastal districts were destroyed.
Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik held a review meeting. He said that 12 lakh people had been evacuated from low lying areas of the coastal districts.
Several locals shot videos of the heavy rain and catastrophic winds, and they have been doing the rounds of social media. The eyewitness videos give a glimpse into the severeness of the natural calamity.
Check out the videos here.
The IMD said earlier today that Fani weakened into “very severe cyclonic storm” about 10 km east of Bhubaneswar and 30 km south of Cuttack. The weather department also said Fani would weaken into “severe cyclonic storm” by 9 pm as it moves north-north westwards towards West Bengal.
The weather department had on Thursday forecast that extremely severe cyclonic storm would hit coastal Odisha near Puri between 8 and 10 am on Friday, much before the previous forecast of landfall at around 5.30 pm. This was revised to between 10 and 12 noon and the latest was advanced by another two hours – 8 and 10 am.
Incessant rain had drenched parts of Odisha on Thursday too.
The state government and disaster mitigation agencies NDRF and ODRF, besides fire services are on the job as relief and rescue operations are in full operational mode.
All flights to and from Bhubaneswar have been cancelled for 24 hours starting from the May 3 midnight, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) said on Thursday.