Cyclone Fani: 81 trains including 3 in Assam cancelled

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Authorities in Andhra Pradesh and neighbouring states have been alerted to be ready to meet any eventuality due to "Fani", which has intensified into a very severe storm.

Bhubaneswar: The Election Commission has lifted the model code of conduct from 11 coastal districts of Odisha, which are likely to be hit by Cyclone Fani, an official said.

The Met has predicted the cyclonic storm, which erupted on April 27, will go on till May 4 with maximum wind speed touching 195 kmph and likelihood of "extremely severe cyclonic storm".

Speaking to media persons, Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) of Odisha, Surendra Kumar said that the constitutional authority has chose to change the locations of two of the strong rooms where the EVMs have been kept after the conclusion of 4-phase elections in the state.

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"Ships at Visakhapatnam are standing-by with relief material for immediate deployment to most affected areas to undertake Humanitarian Aid, Distress Relief operations".

In view of the severe cyclonic storm "Fani" closing in on Odisha, the Ocean State Forecast Operations Centre in Hyderabad on Wednesday issued warnings of high waves to fishermen along Odisha, West Bengal and Srikakulam, Vizianagaram and Visakhapatnam districts of Andhra Pradesh, according to Balakrishnan Nair, Head, Ocean Information and Forecast Services Group (ISG).

The NDRF and the Indian Coast Guard are coordinating with the state governments.

A team of National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) comprises about 45 personnel. The state has 880 cyclone centres, all of them have been put on alert.

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Andhra Pradesh Chief Secretary L V Subrahmanyam in Amaravati on Tuesday, discussed the likely impact of the storm through video conference with chief secretaries of Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Puducherry, Odisha and West Bengal.

Apart from mechanised boats, 4711 non-mechanised boats were also called back from the sea.

The evacuation process will begin from morning of May 2, he said, adding people from low-lying areas will be evacuated to nearby cyclone shelters, schools and other safe places.

The IMD said in a statement: "Heavy to very heavy rainfall is expected at isolated places in the districts of Boudh, Kalahandi, Sambalpur, Deogarh and Sundargarh in Odisha". Fishermen have also been asked not to venture out far in areas southwest and southeast of Bay of Bengal.

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Light to moderate rainfall at most places with heavy falls at isolated places are very likely over coastal districts of West Bengal on May 3 and heavy to very heavy rainfall at a few places with extremely heavy falls at isolated places over Gangetic West Bengal a day later.

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