THIRUVANANTHAPURAM : For M Rajeevan, secretary, Ministry of Earth Sciences, Tuesday gifted both a coincidence and a trip down the proverbial memory lane. Inaugurating the state’s first Cyclone Warning Centre (CWC) at the IMD Meteorological Centre at the Observatory Hills here, the senior officer recalled how he had issued his first cyclone warning bulletin from the country’s first CWC - in Ahmedabad - 32 years ago. He was its first director.
‘’I was very nervous. I was just six months old in the IMD, but I survived for seven years,’’ he said. More than three decades later, on Tuesday, Rajeevan inaugurated the country’s fourth and Kerala’s first CWC in Thiruvananthapuram. So what was the name of ‘his’ first cyclone? ‘’In those days, you didn’t have names for cyclones,’’ S Balachandran, IMD Deputy Director General, said.
Names like ‘Ockhi,’ ‘Luban,’ ‘Titli’, etc which have made the extreme weather phenomena familiar to the public, came later. The Indian Ocean rim countries decide the name by rotation. Ockhi was named by Bangladesh; Titli by Pakistan and Luban by Oman. “Next one will be called ‘Gaja’,’’ explained M Mohapatra, head (services), Regional Specialised Meteorological Centre, IMD.