More than one hundred thousand people have been moved out of the way of a powerful cyclone that is moving towards India and Pakistan. Forecasters warned on Wednesday that the cyclone may completely destroy homes and bring down power lines.
According to government weather monitors, Biparjoy, which translates to “disaster” in Bengali, is now traversing the Arabian Sea and is forecasted to make landfall as a “very severe cyclonic storm” on Thursday evening.
It was anticipated that a 325-kilometer (200-mile) length of coastline between Mandvi in the state of Gujarat in India and Karachi in the city of Pakistan would be pummeled by gale-force winds, storm surges, and torrential rains.
The Meteorological Department of India forecast that the storm will strike close to the Indian port of Jakhau late on Thursday. They warned of the “total destruction” of traditional mud and straw thatched dwellings.
According to the predictions, the winds at sea were already gusting up to rates of up to 180 kilometers per hour (1112 miles per hour).
It is anticipated that by the time it hits landfall, the wind speeds would have increased to 125-135 kilometers per hour, with gusts reaching up to 150 kilometers per hour.
According to C.C. Patel, an officer in charge of rescue activities in Gujarat, “over 47,000 people have been evacuated from coastal and low-lying areas to shelter,”
Throughout the course of Wednesday, it was anticipated that more would be pushed inland.
Meteorologists in India have issued a warning about the possibility of “widespread damage,” which could include the destruction of crops, the “bending or uprooting of power and communication poles,” and the disruption of railways and roadways.
In the coastal community of Mandvi, the majority of the streets were deserted on Wednesday; the only inhabitants were a few starving strays that roamed the beach shacks that had been abandoned. The winds were high, and the skies were overcast.
The government of the state of Gujarat has posted images showing long queues of residents clutching little bags full of their things as they board buses to head interior and away from places that are expected to be impacted the hardest.
“Extremely good to exceptional”
Sherry Rehman, who is Pakistan’s minister for climate change, stated on Wednesday that 62,000 people had been evacuated off the country’s southeastern coastline, and 75 relief camps had been set up in schools and colleges around the country.
She stated that fisherman had been told to keep off the water and that small planes had been grounded, and that there was a possibility of urban flooding in the megacity of Karachi, which is home to over 20 million people.
She made these comments to the press in Islamabad, saying, “Rather than wait and see, we are following a policy of caution.” “The protection of human life is our highest priority.”
The Pakistan Meteorological Department has predicted that the southeastern state of Sindh could experience gusts of up to 140 kilometers per hour, along with a storm surge that will reach 3.5 meters (11.5 feet) in height.
Along the coast of Gujarat, fishing has also been prohibited because the conditions are forecast to deteriorate from “rough to very rough” on Wednesday to “high to phenomenal” on Thursday.
Mohsen Shahedi, a senior official with India’s National Disaster Response Force, stated to reporters that there is a possibility of flooding in some low-lying areas and that they are prepared to tackle the situation.
In India, there have already been five fatalities, including two toddlers who were killed when a wall fell and crushed them to death. Additionally, a woman riding a motorcycle was killed when she was struck by a falling tree.
On the coast of the northern Indian Ocean, where tens of millions of people live, cyclones, which are the equivalent of hurricanes in the North Atlantic or typhoons in the Northwest Pacific, are a regular and fatal threat. Cyclones are the equivalent of hurricanes in the North Atlantic or typhoons in the Northwest Pacific.
As a result of climate change, scientists have expressed concern that severe storms would become more frequent and intense in the future.