The Andaman and Nicobar Islands will bear the maximum impact due to a low pressure area (LPA) in the southeast of Bay of Bengal, which is likely to intensify into a cyclonic storm by March 21.
The system is likely to be a well-marked low pressure area by March 19 morning over southeast Bay of Bengal and adjoining south Andaman Sea and turn into a depression by the morning of March 20 to ultimately become a cyclonic storm – now identified as Asani – on March 21.
The system will initially move east-north-eastwards till March 19, then move northwards along and off Andaman and Nicobar Islands till March 20, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) said.
Then it will move north-north-eastwards and reach near Bangladesh-north Myanmar coasts around the morning of March 22.
This is the first time that the IMD has introduced the pre-genesis track and intensity forecast experimentally at the stage of LPA over southeast Bay of Bengal. The IMD said it is the first centre to initiate pre-genesis forecast worldwide.
According to climatology of cyclones in March based on data from 1891-2020, a cyclone at this time is not a rare phenomenon. There have been eight cyclonic disturbances in March (two in Arabian Sea and six in Bay of Bengal) earlier.
Of this, six dissipated over sea, one crossed over to Tamil Nadu coast as a cyclonic storm in 1926 and the other towards Sri Lanka in 1907, the IMD data said.
The IMD has also predicted heavy to very heavy rainfall at isolated places over Nicobar Islands on Friday; heavy to very heavy rainfall at a few places over Andaman and Nicobar Islands and isolated extremely heavy rainfall over Nicobar Islands on March 19; and heavy to very heavy rainfall at a few places and extremely heavy rainfall at isolated places over Andaman and Nicobar Islands on March 20.
On March 21, light to moderate rainfall/thundershower at most places with isolated heavy rainfalls very likely over Andaman Islands is predicted, the IMD said.
It has also suggested the fishermen not to venture into the seas around the Andaman and Nicobar Islands till March 21.