Fani is the most severe cyclonic storm since the super cyclone of 1999 that claimed close to 10,000 lives. (File Photo)
Flights to and from Bhubaneswar airport stand ‘cancelled’ on May 3 in view of cyclone Fani, Indian aviation regulator DGCA said Thursday. The aviation regulator also said that no flights will take off or land from Kolkata's Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose International Airport between 9.30 pm of May 3 and 6 pm of May 4.
The 'extremely severe' cyclonic storm is expected to hit the Odisha coast on Friday morning.
Other states on the eastern coast, such as West Bengal, Andhra Pradesh, and Tamil Nadu, are also expected to be affected by the cyclone.
In an advisory, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) said the aforementioned flights are being "cancelled in advance in order to avoid passenger inconvenience and safety of operations".
"Resumption of flights will be with positive clearance from respective air traffic control," the aviation watchdog said in the advisory.
Meanwhile, Civil Aviation Minister Suresh Prabhu said that all airlines have been requested to offer assistance in rescue and relief operations.
All airlines are requested to offer all assistance for rescue and relief operations in view of #CyclonicStormFANI All relief material should be airlifted to be delivered to officially designated agencies We all in #aviation sector must rise to occasion.Controll room being set up— Chowkidar Suresh Prabhu (@sureshpprabhu) May 2, 2019
Not only flights but several trains have also been cancelled. As many as 223 trains along the Odisha coastline in the Kolkata-Chennai route have been cancelled, Railways said Thursday.
These include 140 Mail/Express trains and 83 passenger trains.
The national transporter said it will grant a full refund to passengers for the cancelled or diverted trains if tickets are produced for cancellation within three days from the scheduled date of journey.
"All trains cancelled in Bhadrak-Vizianagaram section (along Odisha coastline) of Kolkata-Chennai route till May 4 afternoon in view of cyclone Fani," a railway spokesperson said.
Fani is the most severe cyclonic storm since the super cyclone of 1999 that claimed close to 10,000 lives and left a trail of destruction in vast swathes of Odisha, according to the Joint Typhoon Warning Centre (JWTC).
India Meteorological Department (IMD) sources said it is also the first cyclonic storm of such severity to have formed in April in India's oceanic neighbourhood in 43 years.