Vayu, classified as a very severe cyclonic storm, moved north-northwestwards in the night over the Arabian Sea, and was around 110 kilometres from the coast of Gujarat state. "But, its effect will be there with strong winds and heavy rain", Secretary at the Ministry of Earth Sciences M Rajeevan told PTI.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has advised people to closely follow real-time information being disseminated by the authorities. Sources said that over three lakh people will be evacuated to higher grounds.
CM Rupani while speaking to news agency ANI said, "I request the tourists visiting Gujarat and going to Somnath, Dwarka, Kutch, Sasan to leave for safer places after the afternoon of 12 June". Cyclone Vayu which brought heavy rains in Gujarat and Maharashtra, is likely to make landfall on Thursday, crossing the Gujarat coast at a speed of 135 kilometer per hour, according to the Indian Meteorological Department.
Columns of Army, NDRF personnel, Air Force helicopters and 300 marine commandoes were deployed for rescue and relief operations, while flight operations from five airports in Porbandar, Diu, Bhavnagar, Keshod and Kandla were suspended.
State Relief director M R Kothari said, "The evacuation process, which was started today morning, is nearing its end".
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In India's financial capital of Mumbai, police tweeted that because of the high winds, heavy rainfall and lightning expected from Vayu, people "should not venture into sea and should keep safe distance from shoreline". If there are any fishermen in the sea already, they should be contacted immediately. "Praying for the safety and well-being of all those affected by Cyclone Vayu".
Chief Minister Vijay Rupani Yesterday held a meeting to review the state's preparedness to minimize the impact of Cyclone Vayu.
Total 10 districts and 408 villages of the Saurashtra region of the state are likely to be impacted.
The Indian Coast Guard (ICG) has also deployed ships and aircraft to enable search and rescue post the landfall of the cyclonic storm.
Western Railway has cancelled the operation of around 77 mainline trains, while 33 other mainline trains will be short terminated with partial cancellation as a precautionary measure in the cyclone-prone areas.