Mass evacuations underway as cyclone Biparjoy inches closer to Sindh

"Storm is now heading towards Balochistan," Climate Change Minister Sherry Rehman says

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Web Desk

Pakistan Navyy emergency response teams evacuating local populace from coastal areas. — Pakistan Navy
Pakistan Navyy emergency response teams evacuating local populace from coastal areas. — Pakistan Navy
  • Measures to ensure people's safety in place, says NDMA chief.
  • "Storm is now heading towards Balochistan," climate minister says.
  • "Keti Bandar, Thatta and Badin, amongst others, will be affected."


National Disaster Management Authorities (NDMA) Chairman Lt Gen Inam Haider Malik said Tuesday that — in a bid to ensure the safety of those living in the country's coastal belt ahead of the very severe cyclonic system (VSCS) Biparjoy — around 100,000 people will be shifted to safer places by today evening.

The NDMA chairman's remarks came during a presser in the federal capital regarding the arrangement made to protect citizens ahead of June 15 — the day the storm is expected to make its landfall between Karachi and India's Gujarat.

"Measures to control the storm's effects and weather damage are in progress," Malik said.

"The Sindh government along with non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and relief camp medical missions in Balochistan have been alerted," he added.

According to latest update issued by the Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD), the cyclone moved further north-northwestward during last six hours, and now lies near Latitude 21.2°N and Longitude 66.6°E at a distance of about 380km south of Karachi and 390km south of Thatta.

In the same presser, Climate Change Minister Sherry Rehman said: "The storm is now heading towards Balochistan," adding that the government is in constant touch with the NDMA.

"The storm will surely hit Keti Bandar; however, the NDMA is continuously monitoring the situation," she said.

However, the climate minister assured people that the government had started taking measures to keep citizens safe.

"Keti Bandar, Thatta and Badin, amongst others, will be affected," Rehman said, adding that all rescue missions and agencies have been put on alert.

She lamented: "Victims of the previous floods are still suffering and now this has come."

In a tweet earlier today, Rehman warned that even though the storm had downgraded from "extremely severe" to "very severe", urban flooding is likely in Karachi, given the scale and intensity of the winds.

She further wrote: "So far, more than 40,000 people have been evacuated, while 43 relief camps have been established."

According to the Pakistan Meteorologist Department (PMD)'s latest advisory, the cyclone now lies about 470km south of Karachi, 460km south of Thatta, near Latitude 20.7°N and Longitude 67.1°E.