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5 states put on high alert as Cyclone Biparjoy heads for India’s west coast

India Meteorological Department has said that the cyclonic storm Biparjoy headed towards India’s western coast is expected to intensify in the next 24 hours (Pic. Courtesy ANI)

The India Meteorological Department (IMD) said on Saturday that the “very severe cyclonic storm Biparjoy headed towards India’s western coast is expected to intensify further in the next 24 hours and will move north-northeastwards in the Arabian Sea.

India Meteorological Department (IMD) has warned that the storm could cause heavy rain and strong winds in coastal areas of Karnataka, Goa, Maharashtra and Gujarat. Earlier, on Friday a yellow alert on heavy rain was issued for Kerala.

The storm, which is currently located about 690 km west of Goa, 640 km west-southwest of Mumbai and 640 km south-southwest of Porbandar, is accompanied by winds gusting up to 145 kilometres per hour.

IMD has advised fishermen not to venture into the seas off the coast of Gujarat, Kerala, Karnataka, and Lakshadweep.

Meanhwhile, Tithal Beach, a popular tourist destination in Gujarat’s Valsad on the Arabian Sea coast, has been closed to tourists until June 14 due to high waves and strong winds in anticipation of Cyclone Biparjoy, according to news agency ANI.

“Due to the cyclone, the wind speed may go up to 45 to 55 knots on June 10,11 and 12. The speed may also touch the 65-knot mark. The cyclone would bring light rains and thunderstorms in coastal regions, including south Gujarat and Saurashtra. All ports have been asked to hoist Distant Warning signal,” said Manorama Mohanty, Director of IMD’s Meteorological Centre in Ahmedabad told ANI.

The cyclone was named Biparjoy by Bangladesh. The name means “disaster” or “calamity” in Bengali.