Bhubaneswar (Odisha) [India], May 16 (ANI): Odisha Chief Secretary Asit Tripathy, Development Commissioner, Special Relief Commissioner and other senior officers participated in a review meeting chaired by Union Cabinet Secretary Rajiv Gauba over cyclone Amphan, through a video conference on Saturday.
Outlining the State's preparedness, Chief Secretary Tripathy appraised, "We are in constant touch with India Meteorological Department (IMD) regarding the updates about the cyclone. The Odisha Disaster Rapid Action Force (ODRAF), fire service and NDRF teams are ready for emergency rescue and relief operation."
"They have been equipped with necessary instruments for such operation. Steps have been taken to preposition them in strategic points," he added.
Since power infrastructure is likely to be affected more, the power gangs are being pre-positioned to start the immediate restoration as the cyclone passes away, Tripathy added.
"Around 403 cyclone shelters have been identified in the area likely to be affected by the cyclone. Around 105 of such shelters are presently being used as temporary medical camps and quarantine centers for COVID care," said Tripathy.
"COVID test of the persons accommodated in these centers are being done expeditiously on priority so that persons with negative report can be sent for home quarantine. As a contingency arrangement, alternative buildings have also been identified for use as cyclone shelter, in case of the need for more evacuation," he added.
Further, Chief Secretary Tripathy added that as per the predicted path of the cyclone till now, around seven lakh people in 649 villages along the sea coast are likely to be severely affected.
"The standing crop in lakhs of hectors particularly, ripe summer paddy, pulses and oil seeds, cashew, mango, coconut and vegetables are likely to be damaged in the heavy rainfall and wind," said Tripathy.
However, the Chief Secretary added that "All 12 coastal districts have been kept under alert and they are prepared for any eventuality or change in track of the cyclone". (ANI)