The cyclonic storm Tauktae is expected to become a 'severe cyclonic storm' within the next 12 hours and a 'very severe cyclonic storm' by Sunday, said K Santhosh, Director (Thiruvananthapuram), India Meteorological Department on Saturday.
"Within the next 12 hours cyclone Tauktae is expected to become a 'severe cyclonic storm' and by Sunday it is expected to become a 'very severe cyclonic storm' while moving north westward to the Gujarat coast. By May 18 it is expected to cross Gujarat by evening," Santhosh said.
The IMD director said, the cyclonic storm Tauktae in the Arabian sea is moving away from the Kerala coast and is now approaching the Karnataka coast.
He said under the influence of the cyclone, Kerala is expected to receive heavy to very heavy rainfall with isolated extremely rainfall, which means 20 centimetres or more than 20 centimetres rainfall in the next 14 hours.
"Today districts of Ernakulam, Idukki and all northern districts are expected receive more than 20 centimetres rainfall and all the southern districts, South of Idukki and Ernakulam districts will receive 7 centimetres to 20 centimetres rainfall in 24 hours. The rough sea and high winds are expected to reduce from Tuesday," he added.
Meanwhile, Karnataka Home Minister Basavaraj Bommai and Revenue Minister R Ashoka chaired an emergency meeting with officials of Karnataka State Disaster Management Authority in Bengaluru today over cyclone Tauktae.
The IMD had earlier forecast a likeliness of intensification of a cyclonic storm, Tauktae, over the low-pressure area over the southeastern Arabian Sea and adjoining Lakshadweep area by May 16.
The cyclone was likely to impact areas including the coast of Kerala, Karnataka, Lakshadweep, Goa and Maharashtra.
IMD, on May 13, issued a warning for the fishermen to not venture into the sea till May 17.
Cyclone Tauktae: NDRF earmarks 100 teams for 5 states
The National Disaster Response Force has increased from 53 to 100 the number of teams earmarked to undertake relief and rescue measures in the wake of impending Cyclone Tauktae, a senior officer said on Saturday.
The force's Director General, S N Pradhan, said in a tweet that these teams are being mobilised for deployment in the coastal regions of Kerala, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Gujarat, Goa and Maharashtra.
On Friday, he had said that 53 teams are being committed for the cyclonic storm that is developing in the Arabian sea.
The deployment of National Disaster Response Force teams has been "upped" as per new inputs provided by the India Meteorological Department, Pradhan said.
Out of the 100 teams, the director general said 42 are being pre-deployed or stationed on the ground in six states while 26 are on stand-by.
Thirty-two teams are on backup and can be airlifted upon requirement, Pradhan said.
The NDRF chief also said that members of these teams have been vaccinated against COVID-19 and are equipped with the required tools.
A single NDRF team comprises 35-40 personnel and they are armed with tree and pole cutters, boats, basic medical aid and other relief and rescue equipment.
The India Meteorological Department had said on Friday that the depression in the Arabian Sea is likely to intensify into a "very severe cyclonic storm" on May 17 and cross the Gujarat coast a day later.
The weather condition has intensified into a deep depression.
It is very likely to further intensify into cyclonic storm 'Tauktae' by Saturday morning and very likely to intensify further into a severe cyclonic storm by Saturday night, it had said.
-- With inputs from PTI