As Odisha is bracing to bear the brunt of cyclone “Yaas”, which is expected to making landfall somewhere near Balasore on the Bengal-Odisha border, Odisha chief minister Naveen Patnaik has urged the residents of coastal regions to cooperate with local administration and shift to cyclone shelters.
Addressing the people of the State, CM also asked them to adhere to COVID-19 protocols and to continue wearing masks. He described how cooperation from people will strengthen the government’s efforts. “Cyclones – not a new phenomenon for Odisha,” chief minister Naveen Patnaik said.
“At a time when we are fighting the COVID-19 pandemic, Cyclone Yaas is another challenge that we have to face. Last year in May, we faced cyclone Amphan along with COVID-19 and with the help of people, it was all managed. This time too, we will all work in tandem to combat the calamity and the pandemic,” he said.
“Our priority is to save every life and therefore I request you all to shift to a safe place and cyclone shelters and give full cooperation to the administration. Due to COVID pandemic we need to be more careful, people need to use two face masks and to follow other COVID appropriate behaviour,” he added.
The CM further said there is a need for caution and negligence could be dangerous. He reassured the people that the State government is well prepared to deal with the situation. In a statement issued by the Odisha government Additional Secretary, Indramani Tripathy, said: “IAS officers are assigned the districts noted against each for supervision of relief, rehabilitation and restoration works arising out of the severe Cyclone Yaas landfall”.
The Chief Minister of Odisha has said that cost of treatment in case of injury owing to impending Cyclone Yaas would be borne by Odisha Power Transmission Corporation Limited. “In view of impending #CycloneYaas, @OPTCL_Odisha announced accident benefits for casual electricity workers. OPTCL will bear the full cost of treatment in case of injury & give compensation of Rs 10 lakh to the legal heir of the worker in case of death during restoration work”, Naveen tweeted.
Meanwhile, the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) prepared 149 teams for evacuation and rescue operations in West Bengal and Odisha. Out of these, 99 will be deployed on the ground and the remaining 50 will be available at the force’s various bases across the country for swift airlift if necessary.
NDRF teams even evacuated villagers living in the interiors of Duttapur in West Bengal owing to heavy rains ahead of Cyclone Yaas. More than 800 Odisha Disaster Rapid Action Force (ODRAF) personnel are in a high state of readiness for Cyclone Yaas.
Cyclone Yaas is expected to hit the coasts of Odisha and West Bengal tomorrow. IMD’s latest news on Cyclone Yaas has revealed that the storm is currently 320km South-southeast (SSE) of Paradip and 430km SSE of Balasore.