As cyclone Ockhi continues to ravage Tamil Nadu and Kerala on the second day, eight people have lost their lives and more than 100 fishermen and 50 boats have gone missing. Navy, coast guard, air force and local police have launched a massive operation to rescue them.
Five Navy ships have been deployed from Kochi and two ships are on standby in Lakshadweep. Houses situated in low-lying areas have been waterlogged and crops affected.
In a series of tweets, Sitharaman further informed that six warships and two coast guard ships have been deployed along with additional air effort.
Thus, the system will give heavy rains over parts of Tamil Nadu including Chennai as well as Kerala and some parts of Karnataka between December 3 and 7. A couple - Appu Nadar, 73, and Sumathi, 68 - also died due to the cyclone.
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According to an ANI report, a P8I aircraft, Navy Dornier and Coast Guard Dornier are also airborne for search and rescue along with helicopter with divers. Residents have also been asked to stay indoors with the Indian Meteorological Department predicting heavy to very heavy rainfall in the next 24 hours.
Schools in seven districts of Tamil Nadu, including Thoothukudi, Tirunelveli, Kanyakumari and Virudhunagar remained closed. Sea would be very rough to high over and around Lakshadweep Islands during next 12 hours and high to very high during subsequent 48 hours, it added.
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Squally weather has been forecast for towns along the south Kerala coast with winds up to 55 kmph blowing.
Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) posted image of cyclone warning for south Kerala, adjoining districts of south Tamil Nadu and Lakshadweep Islands. "Due to this heavy rains are expected in southern districts of Tamil Nadu and Kerala", the IMD said in a statement.
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