Cyclone : India rushes naval ships with relief materials to Lanka
Kochi (Kerala), May 20 : India on Friday rushed two naval ships with relief materials to cyclone-hit Sri Lanka. INS Sunayna, an NOPV (Naval offshore patrol vessel) and INS Sutlej, a survey vessel with relief material have been rushed to Colombo from Southern Naval Command Kochi. The first tropical cyclone, ROANU, of the season in the Bay of Bengal has caused devastation for thousands in Sri Lanka. According to the India Meteorological Department (IMD), intense rainfall will continue in southern states of the country, elevating the flood threat the next few days. As per reports, at least 18 people have been killed in Sri Lanka and 200 families are still missing following a series of mudslides. The cyclonic storm ‘ROANU’ over west-central Bay of Bengal moved northeastwards and lay centered at about 160 km south-southwest of Visakhapatnam and 70 km east-southeast of Kakinada. The Met Department has issued heavy to very heavy rainfall warning to coastal Andhra Pradesh, coastal Odisha and coastal Gangetic West Bengal under the influence of the cyclonic storm coupled with gusty winds speeds reaching 90-100 kmph. Fishermen have been advised not to venture into sea as the condition along and off Andhra Pradesh, South Odisha and West Bengal coasts. In Andhra Pradesh, the district administrations have been asked to see that people staying in low-lying areas are shifted to safer places. NDRF and SDRF teams have been kept in readiness and essential items like food, water, medicines and other material has been kept ready to meet any eventuality.