Depression over southeast Arabian sea, Kerala's southern coast warned of heavy rains

Kerala sounds alert for fishermen as low pressure intensifies

The met department has warned of strong rain and gale along Kerala coast within the next 36 hours as a low depression area was spotted in the south of Kanyakumari and South of Sri Lanka.

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, on Monday, ordered the state administration to ensure that fishers to not go to the seas until it is declared safe. "We have been informed that the depression has deepened and it is now 390 km south-southeast of Thiruvananthapuram coast". Control rooms in coastal taluks will function till Thursday.

The sea will turn rough in this period and therefore fishermen have been warned from going out, IMD said.

He also added that they are coordinating with the Coast guards and Navy to monitor the situation in the sea.

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The depression, which is forecast to develop into a deep depression in the next 48 hours, is likely to generate winds with speeds of up to 60 kmph in the state along with thundershowers.

For a state that suffered extensive damage, especially to its southern coast, and heavy loss of lives when Cyclone Ockhi wreaked havoc late a year ago, a repetition of the same fear and panic is likely to be experienced among the coastal communities again.

The meeting yesterday expressed satisfaction over the steps taken so far to face any situation in the event of any disaster, a release from the Chief Minister's Office said. It lay about 420 km southeast of Minicoy, 350 km south to southwest of Thiruvananthapuram and 290 km east to northeast of Maldives and was very likely to move north to northwestwards and intensify into a deep depression in the next 48 hours.

The meeting, chaired by Chief Secretary Paul Antony, directed District Collectors to arrange relief camps for relocation of families from vulnerable areas of the coast. Low-pressure formations are common off the Kerala coast during September-November. The BJP had also accused the LDF government of failure to protect its fishermen "despite early warning" about the cyclone.

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