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High alert issued in western India in view of Cyclone Ockhi

NEW DELHI, Dec. 5, 2017 (BSS/XINHUA) - Authorities sounded a high alert in western states of Gujarat and Maharashtra in India Tuesday in view of Cyclone Ockhi, officials said.

According to Indian meteorological department officials, Cyclone Ockhi would enter south Gujarat Tuesday midnight and is likely to impact coastal areas from Umargam in south Gujarat till Gir Somnath district in Saurashtra.

Officials said sea conditions will remain rough to very rough along and off north Maharashtra and South Gujarat coasts until Wednesday due to the cyclone.

The officials have predicted light to moderate rainfall at most places with heavy rainfall at isolated places in Saurashtra and south Gujarat.

Meteorological department has issued a very severe cyclonic storm warning and advised fishermen to avoid venturing into the sea along and off south Gujarat and north Maharashtra coasts until Wednesday.

The Maharashtra government has ordered closure of schools and colleges in Mumbai and adjoining districts on Tuesday due to "serious weather predictions" in view of Ockhi.

The Disaster Management unit of Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation has issued an advisory urging people not to visit beaches in view of the high tide alert issued for Tuesday.

Indian ministry of earth sciences said light to moderate rainfall at most places with isolated heavy rainfall is also likely over north Konkan on Tuesday. Konkan is a rugged section of the western coastline of India consisting of the coastal districts of the western states of Maharashtra, Goa, and Karnataka.

Officials said rainfall at most places with isolated heavy rainfall is very likely over Nicobar Islands and rainfall at many places over Andaman Islands during the next two days.

Cyclone Ockhi which was triggered last week has claimed over 20 lives in southern states of Kerala and Tamil Nadu.