Ninety Indians missing at sea in the wake of cyclone Tauktae

The Indian rescued 177 of the 270 people aboard and that efforts to find survivors were ongoing

The sea
More than 90 people are missing after a barge off the coast of the Indian city of Mumbai sank amid a severe cyclone. File picture: Pixabay

PRETORIA, May 18 (ANA) – More than 90 people are still missing after a barge off the coast of the Indian city of Mumbai sank amid a severe cyclone, the BBC reported on Tuesday.

The British broadcaster cited the Indian navy saying it has rescued 177 of the 270 people aboard, adding that the search for more people is ongoing.

Three other commercial barges carrying about 700 people are still stranded at sea in the wake of cyclone Tauktae, the BBC has said in its report.

A navy spokesperson, Vivek Madhwal, told the BBC it had dispatched three warships to save those aboard the three stranded commercial barge.

“Ships and aircraft have been deployed for the search and rescue mission,’’ Vivek Madhwal was quoted saying.

According to CNN, cyclone Tauktae made its landfall on Monday night local time in Gujarat.

By Tuesday morning, it had weakened from an “extremely severe cyclonic storm” to a “severe cyclonic storm,” CNN cited the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) saying.

The US broadcaster has said that the cyclone has killed at least 26 people across the coastal states of Gujarat, Kerala, Karnataka, Goa and Maharashtra, according to state authorities.

Hindustan Times warned that after Tauktae, another cyclone could be brewing with a low-pressure area likely to form over the east-central Bay of Bengal.

The Indian publication cited the IMD saying the cyclone might hit next week, and if it forms, it will be called Yaas.

“We have indicated in our bulletin that there is a likelihood of formation of a low-pressure area over Bay of Bengal next week. In our outlook on cyclogenesis also we have indicated that the low-pressure system can intensify.

“As soon as it comes in our forecast skill range we will mention it in our forecasts,” Sunitha Devi, in charge, cyclones at the IMD was quoted saying.

– African News Agency (ANA); Editing by Naomi Mackay

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