Bay of Bengal Current Affairs - 2020

AMPHAN: Cyclonic Storm intensifies into Severe Cyclonic Storm

On May 17, 2020, the Cyclonic storm Amphan in the Bay of Bengal has intensified into severe cyclonic storm. The cyclone is to cross West Bengal-Bangladesh coasts on May 20, 2020.

The National Disaster Response Force has sent 7 teams to West Bengal and 10 teams to Odisha to aid the state government in its relief measures.

What is a severe cyclonic storm?

The Severe Cyclonic Storm is a storm that has winds at the rate of 89-117 km/hr. They are called the severe based on the scale of Indian Meteorological Department

Scales of Cyclone

The Indian Meteorological Department classifies Cyclones based on their wind speeds. When the wind speed is around 31-50 km/hr, it is called depression. When the wind speed is between 51-62 km/hr, it is called Deep Depression. Beyond these speeds, the depression becomes storm. The wind speeds of different storms as follows

  • Cyclonic Storm: 63-88 km/hr
  • Severe Cyclonic Storm: 89-117 km/hr
  • Very Severe Cyclonic Storm: 118-165 km/hr
  • Extremely Severe Cyclonic Storm: 166-220 km/hr
  • Super cyclonic Storm: greater than 220 km/hr

Number of Cyclones are more in Bay of Bengal than Arabian Sea-Why?

The ocean temperatures of Bay of Bengal is more than that of Arabian Sea. Also, the hills in the western ghats are high enough to stop the cyclones strike the coasts.

IMD released list of 169 new names of Tropical Cyclones

The Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) has released 169 new names for the tropical cyclones in the Indian Ocean Region.


The names were contributed by 13 countries namely India, Sri Lanka, Maldives, Myanmar, Oman, Thailand, Qatar, UAE, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Iran. The decision to create new list of cyclones was taken during the 45th session of Panel on Tropical Cyclones (PTC) held by World Meteorological Organization.

Rules in fixing names

The names should have the following rules

  • The proposed names should be neutral to cultures, politics, gender and religious beliefs
  • The name should not hurt the sentiments of the group of population in the world
  • The name should not be rude or cruel in nature
  • The PTC has rights to reject the names suggested by the countries
  • The name should be short with less than 8 characters and easy to pronounce.

Regional Specialize Meteorological Centre

The RSMC in New Delhi is responsible to name the cyclones in the region of Bay of Bengal and Arabian Sea. The suggestion of names of cyclones in these regions including Northern Indian is given by countries such as India, Bangladesh, Maldives, Myanmar, Pakistan, Oman, Sri Lanka and Thailand.