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Transport services, port operations halted as Gujarat braces for Cyclone Vayu landfall

The cyclone is likely to affect Kutch, Morbi, Jamnagar, Junagadh, Devbhoomi-Dwarka, Porbandar, Rajkot, Amreli, Bhavnagar and Gir-Somnath districts in Gujarat.

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Transport services, port operations halted as Gujarat braces for Cyclone Vayu landfall
NDRF personnel arrive at Ahmedabad railway station as authorities prepare for Cyclone Vayu landfall (ANI Photo)
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Operations at all ports and airports located near the Gujarat coastline have been halted temporarily as a precautionary measure against cyclone 'Vayu', the state government said on Wednesday.

The Western Railway has also announced that all trains passing through the coastal areas have either been short- terminated or cancelled for two days, from 6 pm on Wednesday.

As per the weather department, the cyclone is expected to make a landfall in Gujarat on Thursday morning.

"The state government has decided to suspend operations at all the ports situated on Gujarat's coast. As a precautionary measure, all the airports in Saurashtra region will also remain shut till the cyclone recedes," Chief Minister Vijay Rupani said after a review meet in Gandhinagar.

The bus services to pilgrimage sites in that region have also been cancelled, he said.

Since all airports in Kutch and Saurashtra regions have been asked to shut their operations completely, flights to these destinations from Ahmedabad airport stand cancelled for Thursday.

"Flight operations from Ahmedabad to Porbandar, Union Territory of Diu, Kandla, Mundra and Bhavnagar are cancelled for tomorrow. All other scheduled flights are likely to operate normally from Ahmedabad," the city airport said in a statement.

The cyclone is likely to affect Kutch, Morbi, Jamnagar, Junagadh, Devbhoomi-Dwarka, Porbandar, Rajkot, Amreli, Bhavnagar and Gir-Somnath districts, an official said.

The Western Railway (WR) has cancelled trains going towards Kutch and Saurashtra regions for two days.

"In view of the cyclone Vayu, all passenger, mail and express trains to Veraval, Okha, Porbandar, Bhavnagar, Bhuj and Gandhidham will be short-terminated or cancelled after 6 pm of June 12 to June 14," WR said in a release.

To help authorities in relief and rescue work, the railways has kept special trains ready for deployment in those areas after the cyclone makes a landfall.

"Special trains with six to ten coaches each will be kept ready at the nearest safe location to be moved in emergency conditions," the release said.

As per the latest weather information, the cyclone has intensified into a "very severe cyclonic storm" and is located around 340 km south of Gujarat's Veraval coast.

It would hit the coast near Veraval as a very severe cyclonic storm "with a wind speed of 145 to 155 kmph gusting to 170 kmph around morning of June 13," a release issued by the meteorological department said.

As the cyclone is steadily advancing towards the Gujarat coast, the state government has launched a massive evacuation exercise to shift around three lakh people from low-lying areas of Saurashtra and Kutch regions, an official said.

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