Mumbai spared, cyclone Nisarga hits Raigad, moves to interior north-west Maharashtra

MUMBAI: Cyclonic storm Nisarga made landfall in the coastal town of Diveagar, off Alibag, with wind speed of 100-110 kmph and spared Mumbai on Wednesday.  

The megapolis has never faced the full fury of a tropical cyclonic storm in over 70 years as the last cyclone to inflict damage on the city was recorded in 1948, just after Independence. Besides, there were cyclones in 1961 and 2009 that hit Maharashtra’s coast, but none as eagerly watched as Nisarga. The cyclone made its landfall around 1pm in Raigad district.

While first reports said two persons were killed in related mishaps, the western regions of the state like Raigad, Dhule, Nashik, Thane, Ahmednagar, Pune, Kolhapur and Satara districts were getting set for heavy rainfall tonight and Thursday. Met said the depression in the Arabian Sea has weakened and spared Mumbai. The Western metropolis has not experienced a cyclonic storm since the 1950s. One person died of a transformer line fall on him at Umate in Raigad district in the afternoon, reports said.

Strong winds have disrupted power supply in many districts in Raigad and beyond and several areas were in darkness. Both Mumbai and Pune airports remained shut due to the heavy storm and rain. Mumbai city experienced heavy rain and strong winds through the day and night. The BMC said it evacuated some 25,000 people living in hutments in the coastal belt of the metropolis. –IHN-NN

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