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Monsoon catches up in Kerala; depression over Arabian sea likely

PTI | Thiruvananthapuram | Updated: 09-06-2019 17:02 IST | Created: 09-06-2019 17:00 IST
Monsoon catches up in Kerala; depression over Arabian sea likely
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Several parts of Kerala received moderate rainfall on Sunday, a day after the southwest monsoon set in over the state, even as a low pressure area formed over the Arabian Sea. The Meteorological Department said the low pressure was expected to intensify into a depression in the next two days and subsequently, into a cyclone.

Forecasting isolated heavy rainfall and squally weather in coastal areas of the state and in Lakshadweep islands, it advised fishermen not to venture into the sea till June 13. A bulletin issued by the department at 3 pm said the low pressure area has formed over the southeast Arabian Sea and adjoining Lakshadweep area and the east-central Arabian Sea under the influence of the cyclone circulation.

"It is very likely to concentrate into a depression during the next 48 hours over southeast and the adjoining east-central Arabian Sea. It is very likely to move north-north-westwards and intensify further into a cyclonic storm subsequently," it said. The weather report also predicted heavy to very heavy rainfall (115.6-204.4 mm) in isolated places of northern Malappuram and Kozhikode on June 12.

After a delay of a week, the monsoon hit the Kerala coast on Saturday, marking the official commencement of the four-month rainfall season in the country. The district collectors have been asked to be on alert in areas where landslides had occurred during the monsoon last year, sources in the Kerala State Disaster Management Authority (KSDMA) said.

KSDMA Member Secretary Sekar Kuriakose said based on the India Meteorological Department inputs, arrangements have been made to face it institutionally. "This year, the incident response level is up to the taluk levels, besides the district and state level. We have designated officers for handling different scenarios up to the taluk levels," he told a television channel.

District collectors have been given a monsoon preparedness handbook which is part of the Orange book that details out all different standard operating procedures. This is the first time that such a handbook has been prepared in which 30 different departments have been addressed specifically, indicating their roles and responsibilities.

Kerala had witnessed the worst floods in 100 years during the monsoon last year, claiming over 400 lives and leaving behind a trail of destruction.


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