A weather system over the Andaman Sea is tipped to intensify into a cyclone over the Bay of Bengal by mid-week and barrel towards the east coast.
Under the influence of the system, Kolkata and Bengal’s coastal areas are likely to get heavy rain and gusty wind over the weekend.
The storm was likely to move “west-northwestwards and reach near” the south Odisha and north Andhra coastline by Saturday morning, a bulletin from the India Meteorological department said.
“It is still too early to predict the area and time of landfall. After the cyclone nears land, a north-northeast recurve towards the Bengal coast is not ruled out,” said IMD chief Mrutyunjoy Mohapatra.
After Yaas in May and Gulab in September, this will be the third cyclone headed towards the east coast this year. The storm will be called Jawad, meaning generous and named by Saudi Arabia.
“A low-pressure area lay over south Thailand and neighbourhood at 8.30am on November 30. It is likely to emerge into the Andaman Sea during the next 12 hours. Thereafter, it is likely to move west-northwestwards and concentrate into a depression over southeast and adjoining east-central Bay of Bengal by December 2,” said the bulletin.
“It is likely to intensify into a cyclonic storm over central parts of the Bay of Bengal during the subsequent 24 hours. It is likely to move northwestwards, intensify further and reach near north Andhra Pradesh-Odisha coasts around December 4 morning, the bulletin added.
Under the influence of the system, Kolkata is likely to get “heavy to very heavy” rain and gusty winds on Sunday (see chart). Saturday is also likely to be windy. The coastal districts of Bengal — Purba Medinipur, South and North 24-Parganas and Howrah — are likely to get battered by the showers and gusty winds from Saturday itself, according to the Met office in Alipore.
Fishermen have been asked not to venture into the sea from December 3 to 5.
A Met official said May and October-November — pre and post-monsoon periods — are favourable for cyclonic storms because the sea surface temperature is on the higher side. A weather system draws on the heat and moisture to gain strength on the sea.
“There is hardly any difference between the sea conditions in late-November and the start of December,” said Sanjib Bandyopadhyay, deputy director-general of IMD, Kolkata.
A weather system in monsoon usually takes shape over the northeast or northwest Bay of Bengal.
“The areas are much closer to the Bengal coast, compared to the Andaman Sea, which is over 1,000km from the Bengal coast and where most systems in October and November take shape. The long journey often gives ample time to a system to gain strength,” said a weather scientist.
The Celsius in Kolkata is already on the rise and as the storm nears land, the increase in moisture incursion in the atmosphere is likely to further dent any hint of chance of a slide.
December 4, Saturday
⚫ Heavy to very heavy rain likely in Purba and Paschim Medinipur districts
⚫ Heavy rain likely in Howrah, Jhargram, North and South 24-Parganas
⚫ Gusty wind (speed reaching 30-40kmph) likely over North and South-24 Parganas, Purba and Paschim Medinipur, Hooghly, Jhargram, Howrah and Kolkata
December 5, Sunday
⚫ Heavy to very heavy rain likely in Purba and Paschim Medinipur, North and South 24-Parganas, Jhargram, Howrah and Kolkata
⚫ Heavy rain likely in Hooghly, Nadia, Murshidabad, East Burdwan
⚫ Gusty winds (40-50 kmph) likely over the North and South 24-Parganas, Purba and Paschim Medinipur, Jhargram, Howrah and Kolkata
⚫ Gusty winds (30-40 kmph) likely over Hooghly, Nadia, Purba Bardhaman, Murshidabad and Malda