New Delhi, May 24 (FN Bureau) Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal on Monday said collective efforts of all the stakeholders to deal with cyclone Yaas can ensure zero casualty. He said central and state governments are working together to ensure an orderly planning, relief and rehabilitation measures post cyclone. ‘We must ensure a completely zero casualty situation and the collective efforts of governments and industry participants can actually make that happen,’ Goyal said while interacting with industry representatives on preparedness for cyclone Yaas. Several people have been killed in incidents related to cyclone ‘Tauktae’.
The minister also emphasised on ensuring minimum outage of power and communication. He said all essential workers should be provided with necessary resources to carry on the work efficiently. ‘Railways has also kept rescue equipment on standby such as Accident Relief Trains, Medical Relief Vans and Tower Wagons. All of us should work to protect small industries and large industries should ensure the suppliers are given all the support that is required,’ he added. Goyal said oxygen plants and Oxygen Express will continue to serve the hospitals as soon as the cyclone passes by. Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan said there is no challenge with regard to oxygen supply, but there could be a challenge at the power supply front due to the cyclone.
‘I think states are preparing themselves accordingly,’ he said. Union minister for Ports, Shipping and Waterways Mansukh Mandaviya said coordination between different stakeholders is important in this situation. The meeting was attended by officials from India Meteorological Department, representatives from state governments of West Bengal, Jharkhand, Andhra Pradesh and Odisha, besides senior industry members. A presentation was made on the cyclone track and intensity, districts/regions that may experience heavy rains, winds and storm surge, likely damage and measures to mitigate damage. Some of the issues raised in the meeting included ensuring the need for complete communication and power back-up, and stockpiling emergency materials. The commerce ministry in a statement said DG Shipping informed that they have set up control rooms, and advisories are being sent four times in a day.
In the meeting, Railway authorities informed that passenger trains will be cancelled from Tuesday onwards in the areas likely to be worst affected, and freight trains will also be regulated when the wind speed picks up. State government officials apprised about the steps taken by them to reduce the impact of cyclone Yaas, and their preparedness for undertaking rescue, relief and rehabilitation in their respective areas. They stated that measures have been taken to ensure smooth supply of essential goods, particularly for medical supplies. Industry representatives said that sharing of timely information gives them enough confidence to cope with the situation. Pradhan assured that the supply of liquid medical oxygen from eastern India to the rest of the country will not be affected. He said the oil ministry has made a full assessment of various oil and gas installations, ships, docks etc in the area, and learning from recent experience, has taken all precautionary steps to ensure minimal damage. A Ficci representative stated that they are well prepared to handle the cyclone in and around Haldia and have already put in place the evacuation plan for man and materials.
Assocham assured the government of working together with all the agencies concerned to ensure that least disruption is caused by the cyclone. It also suggested use of more technology to help get more real-time and proper information on the cyclone and its path. The West Bengal and Odisha governments have been bracing themselves to deal with the impact of cyclone Yaas. The cyclone is very likely to cross north Odisha-West Bengal coasts between Paradip and Sagar Island around May 26 noon as a ‘very severe cyclonic storm’. It is expected to bring in winds of 155 to 165 kilometres per hour, gusting up to 180 kmph.