BHUBANESWAR: Odisha is on a red alert after the India Meteorological Department (IMD) said  the deep depression over has intensified  into a cyclonic storm, Titli, and is likely to cause heavy to very heavy rain on the Odisha-Andhra Pradesh coast.
Titli is centred about 510 km southeast of Gopalpur and will cross Odisha and adjoining north Andhra Pradesh coast between Gopalpur and Kalingapatnam on Thursday morning.

“Titli is very likely to intensify further into a severe cyclonic storm during the next 24 hours. It is likely to move northwestwards from tonight and cross Odisha and adjoining north Andhra Pradesh coasts between Gopalpur and Kalingapatnam around Thursday,” H R Biswas, Director of the Meteorological Centre in Bhubaneswar told PTI.


As a precautionary measure, the state government has announced the closure of all schools and colleges from today in four districts of the state. 

On Tuesday, in a meeting chaired by the chief secretary Aditya Prasad Padhi, it was decided that schools, colleges, Anganwadi centres in the districts of Gajapati, Ganjam, Puri and Jagatsinghpur will remain closed today and tomorrow. Upon monitoring the situation, a decision on the closure of educational institutions in other parts of the state will be taken.

The Odisha government on its part has set up a target to ensure zero-casualties during the cyclone and alerted all district headquarters for emergency relief work, especially the low-lying areas. Fishermen have been told not to go out to the sea as winds up to 125 kmph are likely to accompany cyclone Titli.

Deputy special relief commissioner PK Mohapatra said the state has deployed 300 motor boats, National Disaster Response Force, Odisha Disaster Rapid Action Force teams and fire personnel to assist in the rescue operation.

(With agencies input)