As the Cyclone Gulab approached for landfall between south Odisha and north Andhra Pradesh coasts on Sunday, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik advised officials to ensure strict adherence of Covid-19 safety protocols in districts to be hit by the storm.
Keeping in view an upsurge in Covid cases post Cyclone ‘Yaas’ in May this year, Patnaik asked the district Collectors and other concerned officials to work beyond requirements for people to save lives during Cyclone Gulab. He directed them to make sure that Covid safety protocols are properly followed at cyclone shelters to avoid possible spread of infections among people after the cyclone.
Reviewing the Government’s preparedness through videoconferencing for Cyclone Gulab, the CM stressed on zero causality during the cyclone and directed the officials to expedite evacuation process in low-lying and flood-prone areas by afternoon.
In view of landslides during the cyclone, he asked the administration to shift residents from vulnerable areas to safer places in a war footing manner. He also asked to keep watch on embankments in Aska, Guadri, Gunupur, Kadinagar and Purusottampur areas as well as other flood-prone villages in seven districts including Gajapti and Ganjam that are likely to be worst-hit by Gulab.
Patnaik urged public to cooperate with the administration in observance of Covid protocols and evacuation work. He directed to shut all educational institutions in 11 districts for Monday.
The Collectors would take decision on reopening of the schools after reviewing the post-cyclone situation. Development Commissioner and Special Relief Commissioner Pradeep Jena briefed the CM about the initiatives taken to counter the cyclone’s impacts. He informed that 42 ODRAF teams, 24 NDRF teams and 103 Fire Services teams have been deployed in the seven districts which are likely to be affected most by the cyclone. He said the IMD has predicted that seven districts would experience less wind but heavy to very heavy rainfall on Sunday and Monday. Ganjam, Gajapati, Rayagada and Koraput are likely to be worst-affected.
This apart, heavy to very heavy rainfall may occur in Kandhamal, Malkangiri, Nabarangpur and Kalahandi districts and intense spell of rain likely to occur in Khordha, Puri and Nayagarh districts.
He alerted that officials about possible landslides in some areas in Gajapati and Rayagada districts. He said the officials have been directed to take appropriate steps for proper evacuation in areas which are prone to landslides.