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Cyclone Ockhi: Mumbai on high alert, schools and colleges to remain shut

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    Precautionary holiday has been declared in schools and colleges in Mumbai and adjoining districts on Tuesday due to 'serious weather predictions' in view of Cyclone Ockhi, Maharashtra minister Vinod Tawde has said.

    Image for representation only

    A high alert was also issued in Gujarat's Banaskantha District administration declares high alert in the district from December 4 to December 6 over the storm.

    Schools and colleges in Mumbai Metropolitan Region, Sindhudurga, Thane, Raigad and Palghar Districts will be closed on Tuesday as a precautionary measure.

    However, Mumbai University and affiliated colleges will not be closed tomorrow. All exams scheduled to be conducted as announced earlier.

    The Indian Meteorological Department's (IMD) Mumbai observatory issued a rain and thundershower warning for the city and suburbs beginning Monday night owing to the cyclonic storm Ockhi.

    "Maharashtra and Gujarat are on high alert as cyclone Ockhi has changed its path in the afternoon today. In the next 24 hours heavy to heavy rainfall is expected in both the state," reported IMD.

    Break-down equipment such as Accident Relief Train, Accident Relief medical van, Road ART have been kept in readiness for any eventuality, the Central Railway Mumbai Division informed.

    All emergency numbers have been updated. An Emergency cell has been opened at Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus and Kalyan.

    More than 250 railway police force and Maharashtra State Security Force personnel have been deployed on crowd management and other related activities at stations.

    Many districts in South Kerala, Tamil Nadu and island group in the Arabian Sea, Lakshadweep has faced the ramshackle conditions with as much as 19 lives have been lost so far.

    Search and rescue operations in the southeast Arabian Sea and Lakshadweep and Minicoy islands continue and the Navy has deployed 10 naval ships and 8 aircraft, round the clock service late last night for the ongoing rescue operations.

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