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GAJA: HOLIDAY FOR STUDENTS IN 3 DISTS

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Trichy: The district collectors of Nagapattinam, Tiruvarur and Thanjavur have declared holiday for schools and colleges in their respective districts today due to Gaja which is expected to make landfall during the day. The district administrations have swung into action with all their might to face the cyclone.

The monitoring officers of Nagapattinam and Tiruvarur held discussions with the district revenue officials to review the preparedness. Principal Secretary and commissioner of treasuries and accounts, Tenkasi S Jawahar, the monitoring officer of Nagapattinam, and the principal secretary for social welfare and nutritious meal programme, Dr K Manivasan, who has been nominated as the monitoring officer of Tiruvarur district, convened meetings with district collectors S Sureshkumar and L Nirmalraj respectively on Wednesday.

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Meanwhile, Thanjavur district collector A Annathurai visited all the villages from Athirampattinam to Sethubavachathiram in the coastal areas and inspected the preparedness of the concerned authorities to face ‘Gaja’. He also advised the fisher folk not to venture into the sea. A total of 135 special teams comprising 633 officials have been deployed to take care of various tasks across the state. Moreover, 212 low-lying areas have been identified across the coastal areas and 249 shelters made ready to accommodate people in the event of any untoward happenings, collector L Nirmalraj said.

Three teams of national disaster response force (NDRF), comprising 25 personnel each have arrived in Nagapattinam district from Arakkonam to provide the required expertise in the event of a disaster, when it strikes the coast, collector Sureshkumar said. Nine multi-purpose disaster relief centres and 22 cyclone shelters have been kept ready. Revenue authorities have been instructed to take necessary steps to accommodate the general public if any situation would arise, he said. A total of 14 static and 19 mobile medical teams have been formed in the district. The fisheries department has mobilised 54 boats. More than one lakh sandbags and 84 earth movers have been kept ready, he further stated.

Meanwhile, the Madurai division of Southern Railway has announced full and partial cancellation of eight trains each from and to Rameswaram due to the cyclone.

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