The super cyclonic storm Amphan on Wednesday triggered high tides in Digha and Purba Medinipur in West Bengal. The super cyclone, which has now weakened into an extremely severe cyclonic storm, is set to make landfall in Digha and Sunderbans area by today noon.
As it rumbled over the Bay of Bengal 510 km off the Digha coast in West Bengal, likely charting a north-northeastward course, West Bengal and Odisha were on high alert. The storm has already triggered heavy rain and gusts of wind in Odisha and rain in some parts of Bengal.
The bio-diversity of Sunderbans is likely to take the most of the brunt of the impact of Cyclone Amphan, which is being considered as the second strongest storm in the Bay of Bengal in almost two decades.
Meanwhile, ninteen teams of National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) have been deployed in West Bengal in view of the approaching cyclone Amphan.
"Six teams have been deployed in South 24 Parganas, four teams each in East Midnapore and Kolkata, three teams in North 24 Parganas and one team each in Hooghly and Howrah," Nishit Upadhyay, NDRF 2nd Battalion Commandant said.
Videos and photos from India and Bangladesh showed families near the coast or in other flood-prone areas being evacuated to cyclone shelters. Some carried bags with their belongings, and all had their faces covered to protect against the virus. Officials went from village to village with loudspeakers warning people of the storm.
(With inputs from AP)