NEW DELHI: Operations at the Kolkata airport, the busiest in eastern India, will be suspended for 12 hours beginning 6 PM on Saturday due to severe cyclone 'Bulbul', Home Ministry officials said.
The severe cyclone is expected to make landfall on the coast this evening. "Due to very severe cyclone 'Bulbul', operations at Kolkata airport is being suspended from 1800 hours on November 9 up to 0600 hours on November 10," a home ministry official said.
Severe cyclone 'Bulbul' at 1430 hours Saturday lay about 90 km south-southeast of Digha, 85 km south of Sagar Islands and 185 km Southeast of Kolkata.
Heavy to extremely heavy rainfall, accompanied by winds reaching up to 120 kmph and tidal waves up to one to two metre, is expected while the cyclone is expected to make landfall on the West Bengal coast at around 2000 to 2200 hours on Saturday.
The National Crisis Management Committee (NCMC), the country's apex body to handle any emergency, on Saturday reviewed the preparedness to deal with the very severe cyclone 'Bulbul' over the Bay of Bengal which is likely to affect coastal districts of West Bengal and Odisha.
The meeting of the NCMC, headed by Cabinet Secretary Rajiv Gauba, was informed by the India Meteorological Department (IMD) that the cyclone has now intensified and is likely to cross the West Bengal coast by Saturday evening.