Stay Safe Chennai: India Prays For People's Safety Amid Cyclone Michaung Chaos; Fears Of Repeat Of 2015 Looms

(MENAFN- AsiaNet News) Chennai and its neighbouring districts were plunged into chaos on Monday as continuous rainfall pounded various areas, causing widespread flooding and triggering concerns of a recurrence of the devastating 2015 deluge.

The haunting memories of the 2015 floods, which claimed several lives and caused widespread destruction, are still fresh in the minds of Chennaites. The city faced severe flooding due to incessant rains, leading to a breakdown of infrastructure and communication systems. The fear of a repeat disaster has prompted the government to take preemptive measures to minimize the impact of Cyclone Michaung.
Residents were observed rushing to purchase and replenish essential supplies, with a heightened demand for drinking water. The relentless downpour resulted in power outages and disruptions in internet connectivity.

The cyclonic storm Michaung, expected to make landfall on the coast of Andhra Pradesh on Tuesday morning, was positioned near Chennai and Puducherry, exacerbating the heavy rainfall in the region.
The name 'Michaung' was suggested by Myanmar. It means strength or resilience.

Transportation services suffered a significant blow with numerous train and flight cancellations due to the adverse weather conditions. Heavily flooded roads presented a formidable challenge for the sparse number of road users.

Also read:
Chennai resident's Cyclone Michaung ordeal: Flooded streets, missed flight and elevator rescue (WATCH)

Vast areas of the state capital and the adjacent districts of Kancheepuram, Chengalpet, and Tiruvallur were submerged under water, prompting the deployment of government machinery to address the stagnant water and inundation.

In the latest weather update, authorities indicated that the rainfall is expected to persist in these districts until late on Monday.

"Cyclonic storm "MICHAUNG centered over the west central and adjoining southwest Bay of Bengal off south Andhra Pradesh and adjoining North Tamil Nadu coasts moved northwestwards at a speed of 8 KMPH, intensified into a Severe Cyclonic Storm over the same region on December 4. It is likely to move nearly northwards almost parallel and close to south Andhra Pradesh coast and and cross between Nellore and Machilipatnam (AP) during forenoon of December 5 as a Severe Cyclonic Storm," an update from the India Meteorological Department (IMD) said.

Cabinet ministers Udhayanidhi Stalin and Ma Subramanian visited the impacted regions in Chennai, overseeing relief efforts.

Chennai airport experienced a suspension of operations from 9:40 am to 11:30 pm, resulting in the cancellation of 70 flights due to continuous rainfall. The Airport Authority of India reported waterlogging, leading to the closure of the runway and tarmac.

Both rail and air services faced disruptions with numerous cancellations and delays.

"In view of water flowing above danger level, the bridge no.14 between Basin bridge and Vyasarpadi has been suspended on account of safety reasons,"
announced the Southern Railway. As a result, six trains that were scheduled to depart from Dr. MGR Chennai Central to various destinations, including Coimbatore and Mysuru, were canceled on Monday morning. The Southern Railway assured that a full refund would be provided to all passengers affected by the cancellation of these trains.

Airport authorities reported the cancellation of 12 domestic outbound services, including flights to destinations such as Ahmedabad and Thiruvananthapuram. Additionally, a private carrier canceled four international services, impacting routes to Dubai and Sri Lanka. Three arriving international services were redirected to Bengaluru.

The city police announced the closure of 14 subways in response to widespread inundation. Efforts were made to address the aftermath of the heavy rains, including the removal of uprooted trees at 11 different locations.

In response to a viral video showing a crocodile crossing a road in suburban Perungulathur during the intense rainfall in Chennai, Supriya Sahu, the Additional Chief Secretary for Environment, Climate Change, and Forests in the Tamil Nadu government, shared her reaction.

In a post on X, she said, "Many are tweeting about this video. There are a few mugger crocodiles in several of the water bodies in Chennai. These are shy elusive animals and avoid human contact. This one has come out as the water has overflown due to massive rains under the impact of #CycloneMichuang please do not go close to water bodies.".

"There is no possibility of harm to humans IF these animals are left alone & UNPROVOKED. No need to panic. Wildlife division has been alerted and they are on the job to avoid any untoward incident #cyclonemichaung #Cyclone #Michaung #ChennaiRains."

Also read:
Explained: Why Chennai is facing floods despite 3319 km of storm water drains

In Velachery, a section of land reportedly collapsed, creating a deep pit and trapping individuals. Additionally, a building in the area collapsed, leading to the entrapment of some workers. Two people have been rescued and admitted to the hospital, with further details not disclosed by the police.

To support small and medium enterprises, the Industries Department has established a help desk to provide information and assistance.

"SIPCOT is continuously monitoring and clearing hurdles within the industrial parks located in affected districts using patrol teams," an official said.

Meanwhile, India, as a nation, is uniting in prayer for the safety of the people in Chennai. The hashtag #StaySafeChennai is trending on social media platforms, with citizens expressing solidarity and offering support to those affected. As Chennai battles Cyclone Michaung, the collective prayers and efforts of the nation are directed towards the safety and well-being of its residents.


AsiaNet News

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