Bhubaneswar, October 11: Keeping the state of Odisha and Andhra Pradesh on high alert, cyclone ‘Titli’hit the the coast in southern Odisha early this morning uprooted trees and electric poles. Two people have died in neighbouring Andhra Pradesh, according to the National Disaster Management Authority.
'Titli' which intensified into a "very severe cyclonic storm" over the Bay of Bengal also brought with heavy rain and strong winds. Over three lakh people in Odisha's five coastal districts were moved to safety as a precautionary measure. The disaster management authority has asked people to stay away from low-lying beaches and other locations which may be swept by high tides or storm waves.
Flights and train services between Andhra and Odisha have also been affected because of Cyclone Titli. IndiGo Airline has cancelled five flights to and from Bhubaneswar. Eight districts in Odisha - Ganjam, Gajapati, Khurda, Puri, Jagatsinghpur, Kendrapara, Bhadrak and Balasore - have been affected by 'Titli'.
Power supply and telephone links got disrupted and road lines were snapped due to uprooted trees at many places of Gajapati district. There are also reports of damages to mud houses. The Odisha state government evacuated more than three lakh people from five coastal districts yesterday while local schools, colleges and childcare centres were ordered closed.
The state government said it is prepared to face possible floods due to heavy rain.The people who have been moved out of their homes have been accommodated in shelters. Pregnant women have been shifted to hospitals.
The landfall process of Cyclone Titli has been completed and "the centre of eye of cyclone 'Titli' lies over the land," the Met department said. Cyclone Titli is moving towards West Bengal and is expected to weaken gradually with decreasing wind speed.
The very severe cyclonic storm" is being monitored by the coastal Doppler Weather Radars at Visakhapatnam, Gopalpur and Paradip. Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik took stock of the situation yesterday and asked the collectors of five coastal districts to move people to safety.