KARACHI: Tropical cyclone named Vayu, in the East of Arabian Sea, has intensified and developed into a category-one cyclone. According to the Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD), the cyclone was located at a distance of 725 kilometres from Karachi on Wednesday morning.
PMD said that the cyclone had moved north-west during the last six hours, lying at about a distance of 725km southeast of Karachi, and was expected to continue to move further north.
The cyclone is expected to cause heavy rains and storm in Badin, Thatta and Tharparkar on Thursday and Friday, while thundershowers are also expected in the rest of Sindh. A high alert has been issued in Badin citing the predictions of heavy rains. PMD also forecast that the cyclone would likely hit Thatta and other parts of Sindh on from on June 16 and 17.
However, as the intensity of the tropical cyclone is expected to persist in the next 24 hours, heatwave will continue in Karachi in the coming few days. Winds from the sea are predicted to remain suspended during the day and humidity will increase.
The fishermen are advised not to venture in open sea between Wednesday evening and Friday evening, as sea will remain extemely rough.
The Met Office has also advised all relevant authorities in Sindh to stay alert and take precautionary measures to minimise the impact of cyclone Vayu. In this regard, Deputy Commissioner Hafeez Sayal has said that holidays of government officials have been postponed and directions have also been issued for the cleaning of flood water courses on an urgent basis.
Meanwhile, arrangements for the implementation of contingency plans made by relevant departments were reviewed in a meeting chaired by Karachi Comissioner Iftikhar Shalwani. It was decided that all deputy commissioners would set up heatwave first response centres in their jurisdictions and remove billboards.
* WITH ADDITIONAL REPORTING BY ONLINE
Published in The Express Tribune, June 13th, 2019.