Tamil Nadu Revenue and Disaster Management Minister K K S S R Ramachandran said Tuesday the government is 100 per cent prepared to tackle the challenges posed by the northeast monsoon.
The minister noted that based on the advisory of the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD), the government provided instructions to collectors of all 27 districts that are likely to receive heavy rainfall to be prepared with all preventive measures.
As a preventive measure, the government announced a holiday for schools and colleges in Nagapattinam, Cuddalore, Ariyalur, Thanjavur, Mayiladuthurai, and Thiruvarur districts. Only schools have been given holiday in other districts like Tiruvannamalai, Dindigul (Kodaikanal), and Pudukkottai (Kanthavarkottai, Karambakudi).
Quoting the IMD forecast, which issued a warning on Tuesday as squally weather with wind speed 40-45 mph gusting to 55 kmph is likely to prevail along and off Tamil Nadu coast, Gulf of Mannar, Comorin area, the minister said the district collectors informed fisherfolks not to enter these areas.
Monitoring officers have been deployed in Chengalpattu, Tiruvallur, Villupuram, Cuddalore, Nagapattinam, Mayiladuthurai, Thiruvarur, Pudukkottai, Ramanathapuram, Sivaganga, Theni, Madurai and Dindigul districts.
The minister said 121 multi-purpose safety centres and 4,967 relief centres comprising schools and colleges, marriage halls and community halls are kept ready to accommodate people. The district collectors have provided permission to tahsildars to open rescue centres depending on the situation immediately without waiting for any top-level approval to ensure the public is safely accommodated soon.
The government has readied 169 relief centres in Chennai, and 260 high-power motor pumps are kept ready to bail out the stagnant water.
As many as 12 teams comprising 400 members of the State Disaster Response Force (SDRF) are kept ready in Dindigul, Tirunelveli, Coimbatore and Tiruchirapalli districts, and a 200-member group attached to the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) are kept ready in Chennai and Arakkonam area for relief and rescue measures.
The public has been advised to contact emergency call centres by dialling toll-free numbers 1070 or 1077.
S Balachandran, deputy-director general of meteorology, Regional Meteorological Centre (RMC), Chennai, said seven areas have recorded hefty rainfall and 31 recorded heavy rainfall.
According to the RMC official, among all districts, Vedaranyam (Nagapattinam district) recorded the highest (17 cm) amount of rainfall in the last 24 hours.
“In the next 24 hours, heavy to very heavy rainfall is likely to occur over Nagapattinam, Mayiladuthurai, Thanjavur, Villpuram, Thiruvarur, Cuddalore, Puducherry and Karaikal areas,” he said.
He added that a few areas in Kancheepuram, Chengalpattu, Tiruvannamalai, Kallakurichi, Perambalur, Ariyalur, Tiruchirapalli and Pudukkottai are also likely to receive heavy rainfall.
As per the RMC, as far as the northeast monsoon is concerned, from October 1 to November 14, 23 cm of rainfall has been recorded in Tamil Nadu, Puducherry and Karaikal, which is 14 per cent less than the average amount of rain in this period.
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