Bhubaneswar: Odisha chief secretary AP Padhi Monday geared up the state machinery to face cyclonic storm Fani which is expected to pass near the Odisha coast even though it is not going to cross the Indian east coast.

Padhi convened a preparatory meeting of all stakeholders and briefed them to be prepared for the cyclonic storm Fani.

“As per forecast by the IMD and US Navy, the cyclonic storm will not cross any coast of India. However, it might pass near coast. We have kept a close watch on the situation and taken precautionary measures. Fishermen have been warned not to venture into sea. We are ready to tackle any eventuality,” said Padhi.

He said that 12 NDRF and 20 ODRAF teams besides 300 fire plersonnel are in readiness to face the Fani.

Special Relief Commissioner Bishnupada Sethi briefed the meeting about the situation. Police DGP RP Sharma, revenue and disaster management secretary and other related department secretaries besides the NDRF officials were present in the meeting.

The IMD, which is continuously watching the movement of the cyclonic storm, said the system is very likely to intensify into a severe cyclonic storm and later into a very severe cyclonic storm. Under its influence light to moderate rainfall is likely at few places in south coastal Odisha on May 2 and heavy to very heavy rainfall at isolated places over coastal Odisha from May 3, said IMD.