Bangladesh evacuates 300000 people ahead of Cyclone Bulbul

Kolkata Rains

Several ships from Bangladesh's navy and coast guard were kept ready in parts of the region for an emergency response, said the domestic TV station Independent.

The Weather department has said that the cyclone will make an impact with West Bengal on Sunday, bringing heavy rains and winds up to 135 kmph.

People head for shelter as cyclone Bulbul moves towards the capital, Dhaka, in Bangladesh.

One person was killed by an uprooted tree in Kolkata and another by a wall that collapsed under the force of the winds in Odisha state, authorities said. According to the NREC, about 2,500 have been evacuated in four districts Jagatsinghpur, Kendrapada, Bhadrak and Balasore and placed in 26 shelters.

"It's very likely to move northeastwards, weaken gradually and cross West Bengal - Bangladesh Coasts between Sagar Islands (WB) and Khepupara (Bangladesh), across Sunderban delta during next 3 hrs as a Severe Cyclonic Storm", IMD said.

He also said that out of the total teams in Odisha, six have been deployed while the rest are in reserve.

Meanwhile, the authorities have also asked the fishermen not to venture in the north and central Bay of Bengal along West Bengal and Odisha. Acting on the advice by weatherman, both states suspended fishing activities from Friday onwards over the West Bengal-Odisha coasts.

The Bangladesh government has ordered the evacuation of 18 lakh people from the country's coastal areas.Local authorities have ordered school buildings and mosques to be used as shelters, reported BBC.

Packing a maximum wind speed of 120km/h (75m/h), Bulbul is on course to make landfall in the southwestern Khulna region, near the Sundarbans, the world's largest mangrove forest, which straddles Bangladesh and part of eastern India and is home to the endangered Bengal tigers.

Chief Minister Banerjee, who was monitoring the situation at state administrative headquarter Nabanna, told reporters on Saturday night that Central Disaster Management teams and state disaster management teams were working round the clock in affected areas.

"We've already evacuated some 391,000 people", he said. "Be alert, take care and stay safe", she said.

The meeting of the NCMC, headed by Cabinet Secretary Rajiv Gauba, was informed by the IMD that the cyclone has now intensified and is likely to cross the West Bengal coast by Saturday evening.

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