The Bay of Bengal has cranked up a cyclone named “Asani” after an erstwhile low-pressure spun furiously through the day and into the night on Saturday to intensify thrice over the South-East Bay of Bengal early on Sunday.

The cyclone has rutled up clouds across almost two-thirds of the entire Bay and lay almost 1,000 km away from the Andhra-Pradesh and Odisha coast where it is expected to steam its way towards in the next couple of days, giving it time and space to intensify further as a severe cyclone.

Prodigiously warm seas

The Bay, except along the coast from North Tamil Nadu to as far away as West Bengal-Bangladesh, remains prodigiously warm on Sunday morning. Sea-surface temperatures are now spread out evenly across at 31°C as the warmest pool of an 32°C over the Central Bay broke down.

Projected track of cyclone ‘Asani’. Here CS stands for cyclonic storm while SCS for severe cyclonic storm. PIC credit: Skymet Weather

Projected track of cyclone ‘Asani’. Here CS stands for cyclonic storm while SCS for severe cyclonic storm. PIC credit: Skymet Weather

India Meteorological Department (IMD) said on Sunday morning that “Asani” lay 450 km West-North-West of Car Nicobar (Nicobar Islands); 380 km West of Port Blair (Andaman Islands); 970 km South-East of Visakhapatnam and 1,030 km South-South-East of Puri .

Severe cyclone by Monday

It may move initially towards Andhra Pradesh coast and intensify further into a severe cyclone over East-Central Bay by Monday morning. It will continue to move in the same direction till Tuesday evening, reaching near the North Andhra Pradesh and Odisha coasts. From here, it may recurve to the North-North-East towards the Odisha coast, the IMD said, without indicating a place of landfall.

Numerical weather predictions from the IMD suggest that ”Asani” will weaken into a conventional cyclone off the North Andhra Pradesh coast and will be guided by westerlies (western disturbances are moving over land now) away from both the Andhra Pradesh and Odisha coasts towards the Bangladesh coast. The US Joint Typhoon Warning Center too tends to agree with this track.

Likely skirting coast

This would likely spare any part of the coast of East India any direct hit, though the region will be impacted by winds and rain from Asani. The system will weaken as a cyclone by Wednesday morning and further as a deep depression by Thursday evening while being still over the waters and away from the East Coast of India.

The IMD has forecast light to moderate rainfall likely at a few places over Coastal Odisha and adjoining North Coastal Andhra Pradesh from Tuesday evening with heavy rainfall at isolated places over Coastal Odisha and North Coastal Andhra Pradesh.

Fishermen warning

On Wednesday, rainfall at a few places with heavy rainfall at isolated places is likely over Coastal Odisha and adjoining coastal areas of North Andhra Pradesh and West Bengal. On Thursday, light to moderate rainfall is likely at a few places over the coastal areas of Odisha and West Bengal.

Fishermen are advised not to venture into East-Central and South-East Bay and the adjoining Andaman Sea today (Sunday); the central parts of the Bay of Bengal Monday and Tuesday; and over Northwest Bay from Tuesday to Thursday.