The India Meteorological Department (IMD) said on Tuesday, 10 May, that Cyclone Asani would weaken into a cyclonic storm by the morning of 11 May.
Meanwhile, a red alert has been issued for Andhra Pradesh as the storm moves towards its coast.
"Asani is moving towards the Andhra coast. A red alert has been issued for Andhra. It is expected to reach the west-central Bay of Bengal close to Kakinada or Vishakhapatnam by morning," Sanjeev Dwivedi, a scientist at the IMD, said, according to news agency ANI.
The scientist added that the cyclone might recurve after tomorrow morning, after which it would move towards Odisha. "Heavy to very heavy rainfall over Odisha is expected," Dwivedi said.
The IMD has predicted rainfall and strong winds in three states, namely West Bengal, Odisha, and Andhra Pradesh.
Earlier in the day, the IMD had said that the cyclone was likely to recurve north-northeastwards and move towards the northwest Bay of Bengal, off north Andhra Pradesh and Odisha coasts.
Cyclone Shelters Set Up: Puri Sub-Collector
The IMD's forecast for 11 May predicted heavy to very heavy rainfall in north coastal Andhra Pradesh. Heavy rainfall is also likely over coastal Odisha and West Bengal.
Sub-Collector of Puri, Bhabataran Sahu, said that cyclone shelters had been set up and the authorities were prepared to undertake evacuation operations if necessary.
"We have set up 179 cyclone shelters to face any eventual activities including medical emergencies. If required, we are ready to launch an evacuation process, even in low-lying areas, across the Puri district," Sahu was quoted as saying by ANI.
He added that farmers in low-lying areas were asked to collect their harvest before the heavy rains began.
"Apart from this, leaves of government staff and volunteers have been cancelled and four teams of the Odisha Disaster Rapid Action Force (ODRAF) have been deployed," he added.
Meanwhile, flight operations were impacted in Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu, as several airlines cancelled their flights on Tuesday.
Vishakhapatnam International Airport director Srinivas said that IndiGo had cancelled 23 flights due to bad weather. Four Air Asia flights had also been cancelled in Vizag on Tuesday, he said, as per ANI.
Meanwhile, 10 flights were cancelled at the Chennai Airport, including from Mumbai, Hyderabad, Jaipur, and Vishakhapatnam.
An official from Vishakhapatnam's Cyclone Warning Centre said that Asani was currently over the west-central and south-west regions of the Bay of Bengal, as per ANI.
He also said that rainfall was likely to occur across northern parts of Andhra Pradesh.
(With inputs from ANI.)
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