Bhubaneswar: At least 61 persons have lost their lives and 60.11 lakh people have been affected due to cyclone Titli that has left trail of devastation in Odisha. Titli had made a landfall near Gopalpur between Odisha and Andhra Pradesh coast in the early hours of October 11.
Ganjam and Rayagada districts have affected immensely due to the calamity. And non-coastal Gajapati district has been the worst-affected. And the opposition parties are targeting the Odisha Government for their failure to deal with the situation.
However, the Special Relief Commissioner’s office has found some unusual characteristics on very severe cyclonic storm ‘Titli’.
These are as follows:
- Information on re-curve of the cyclonic system towards north-eastwards received at 12 noon on October 9.
- IMD, Bhubaneswar upgraded the warning to a Very Severe Cyclonic Storm at 9.45 AM on October 10 and the landfall was predicted in the early morning hours of October 11.
- The very severe cyclonic storm ‘Titli’ weakened into a well-marked low pressure area only after crossing Odisha. Due to the presence of such strong system (two days) from very severe cyclonic storm to Depression, extreme to very heavy rainfall occurred over Odisha for a long time.
- Generally any system formed over Bay of Bengal moves NW wards but as ‘Titli’ moved NE wards and also persisted over the districts of south Odisha for more than 30 hours, maximum rainfall occurred over the districts of south Odisha, which was not predicted accordingly.
- The very severe cyclonic storm Titli crossed Andhra Pradesh and adjoining Odisha coasts in the early hours of October 11. Thus movement towards Odisha coast was correctly predicted along with its re-curvature towards northeast. However landfall occurred earlier than the forecast time. Also the intensity at the time of landfall was underestimated. This is according to Regional Specialised Meteorological Center for Tropical Cyclone over North Indian Ocean.
- Loss of human lives has been significantly less due to cyclone, Titli compared to similar cyclones in the past, though wind speed at the time of landfall was significantly higher (140-150 gusting to 165 kmph), said IMD.