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Heavy rains lash coastal Andhra, ‘Gulab’ weakens into deep depression

The deep depression, which is a remnant of the Cyclonic Storm ‘Gulab’ is likely to cause heavy rainfall in coastal Andhra Pradesh and Chhattisgarh, IMD said on Monday.

IANS | Vishakhapatnam |

Heavy rains lashed north coastal Andhra Pradesh under the impact of cyclonic storm ‘Gulab’ which has weakened into a deep depression after crossing the Andhra-Odisha coast, officials said on Monday.

North coastal districts of Srikakulam, Vizianagaram, and Visakhapatnam districts were experiencing heavy downpours accompanied by strong winds since Sunday night. Heavy rains inundated low-lying areas and strong winds with speeds reaching 40-60 kmph uprooted trees and electricity poles in the coastal districts.

Authorities remained on high alert to undertake rescue and relief operations in the affected areas. Teams of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and State Disaster Response Force (SDRF) have already reached the north coastal Andhra. Naval ships and aircraft are on standby for rescue and relief operations in the areas likely to be affected by the cyclone.

Deputy Chief Minister Dharmana Krishna Das along with officials visited some affected areas in the Srikakulam district. He directed officials of all departments to remain alert in view of the heavy rains.

Heavy rains also lashed Visakhapatnam city and several parts of the district. Water stagnation on roads snapped connectivity to some villages.

Chief Secretary Adityanath Das, who rushed to Visakhapatnam on Sunday night, reviewed the rescue and relief operations in the cyclone-affected areas.
He spoke to Srikakulam and Vizianagaram district collectors over the phone and enquired about the measures taken to deal with the situation.

Electricity supply to the entire Srikakulam district was disrupted due to heavy rains and strong winds.

Officials said out of six fishermen who were reported missing, five have returned safely while the search was on for the one missing.

Authorities in the Srikakulam district shifted 1,500 people from low-lying areas to 30 relief camps. Control rooms have been set up in the offices of the district collector and district police superintendent.

Gajapatinagarm in Vizianagaram district received the highest rainfall of 20 mm since Sunday night.

According to the India Meteorological Department (IMD) bulletin on Monday morning, a deep depression lay centered over south Odisha and adjoining north Andhra Pradesh about 110 km south-southeast of Jagdalpur (Chhattisgarh) and 140 km west-northwest of Kalingapatnam (Andhra Pradesh).

It is likely to move nearly westwards and weaken further into a depression during the next 12 hours.

The IMD has forecast light to moderate rainfall at most places with heavy to very heavy and extremely heavy falls at isolated places very likely over north coastal Andhra Pradesh, south Chhattisgarh, Telangana, and Vidarbha.

Heavy to very heavy falls at isolated places over south Odisha and heavy rainfall at isolated places over Rayalaseema are also likely.

Squally wind, speed reaching 50-60 kmph gusting to 70 kmph, very likely to prevail over Westcentral and adjoining the northwest Bay of Bengal off Andhra Pradesh and adjoining south Odisha coasts during next six hours and decrease thereafter.

Squally wind, speed reaching 45-55 kmph gusting to 65 kmph, is likely to prevail over north Andhra Pradesh and south Odisha districts during the next six hours and decrease thereafter.

As sea conditions will be rough to very rough, meteorologists have advised fishermen not to venture into the sea for the next 12 hours.

Meanwhile, the cyclone also triggered rains in other parts of Andhra Pradesh. East Godavari district was receiving heavy rains.

Low-lying areas were inundated in Kakinada. Rainwater entered houses in some areas. The electricity supply was disrupted in Amalapuram on Sunday night.