INDIA. Mumbai: The Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) has forecasted on Saturday night that the cyclonic storm Biporjoy (Biporjoy) is expected to further intensify into an extremely severe cyclonic storm within the next 6 hours. It is likely to move northwards and reach near the Pakistan coast by the evening of June 15.
As of 8:30 pm on Saturday, the cyclone was moving at a speed of 7 KMPH and was centered over the same region near latitude 17.3 degrees N and longitude 67.3 E. It is located approximately 600 km West-South West of Mumbai, 540 km South-South West of Porbandar (Gujarat), 600 km South-South West of Dwarka (Gujarat), 680 km South of Naliya (Kutch, Gujarat), and 840 km South of Karachi. The IMD statement indicated that it is expected to reach Gujarat by Monday. The meteorological office has issued a cyclone alert for Saurashtra and Kutch coasts.
The IMD has also forecasted torrential rains accompanied by winds blowing at 45 to 55 knots, which may increase up to 65 knots in Maharashtra, Karnataka, Goa, and Kerala within the next 24 hours. Dr. Sushma Nair, Scientist at the Regional Meteorological Centre, IMD, warned fishermen not to venture into the sea during the cyclone, as stated in the media.
In another development, the Indian Coast Guard (ICG) has directed the Indian fishing boats along the Western Coast to return to the harbor. The ICG has provided guidance and warnings to the boats, and for this purpose, 04-06 ships and a DORNEIR aircraft have been pressed into service, according to an official statement.
The Mumbai-based Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre (MRCC) has been in contact with its counterparts in Oman, Yemen, Somalia, and the Pakistan coast. Navigational warnings in the form of NAVTEX and NAVAREA have been issued, and the International Safety Net has been activated to ensure that search and rescue assistance is available for Indian vessels and crews operating in those waters.
Furthermore, the MRCC’s remote operating stations and the 24×7 manned ICG operation are guiding merchant traffic to safety. They are also coordinating with stakeholders such as ONGC, the Director General of Shipping, Port authorities, Dhow associations, and state Disaster Management authorities to implement contingency measures during the cyclone.