Kolkata: Lakhs of people were moved to safer places and disaster management teams positioned in coastal areas of West Bengal even as a high tide was reported from the sea resort of Digha with cyclone Phailin hitting the Odisha coast Saturday.
The met office has forecast heavy rains in some areas of six south Bengal districts - East Midnapore, West Midnapore, North 24 Parganas, South 24 Parganas, Howrah, Hooghly, Bankura - till Sunday afternoon as an impact of the cyclone.
"There is a high tide in Digha," said an officer at the Regional Meteorological Centre, Alipore. The fishermen have been advised not to go into the sea.
Disaster Management Minister Javed Khan said civil defence rescue and disaster management teams armed with equipment and boats have been kept ready for any eventuality in the coastal areas.
"We have moved lakhs of people in the coastal area to safer places," said Khan.
People at Digha, Shankarpur, Mandarmoni have been asked to remain indoors.
The South Eastern Railway has decided to cancel all south India-bound trains beyond Kharagpur besides diverting a host of Puri and south bound trains on East Coast Section as a precautionary measure.
Among the cancelled trains Sunday were Howrah-Puri Dhauli Express from Howrah, Digha-Puri Express from Digha, Bangriposi-Bhubaneswar Express from Bangriposi.
The trains cancelled Saturday included Howrah-Puri Express from Howrah, Howrah-Puri Sri Jagannath Express from Howrah, Howrah-Puri Shatabdi Express from Howrah, Howrah-Bhubaneswar Jan Shatabdi Express from Howrah, Sealdah-Puri Special train from Sealdah and Santragachi-Chennai Special train from Santragachi.
All Howrah-bound mail/express trains leaving Puri Saturday were cancelled, officials said.