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Cyclone Hudhud, categorised as "severe"


Cyclone Hudhud, categorised as "severe" by weather forecasters, is expected to hit Orissa and Andhra Pradesh states on Sunday.

The Meteorological Department has predicted the storm will bring winds of up to 140km/h (87mph).

A super-cyclone in 1999 killed more than 10,000 people in Orissa.

The Meteorological Department said Cyclone Hudhud was due to make landfall on Sunday afternoon, Indian time. The centre of the storm was expected to hit the key port city of Vishakapatnam in Andhra Pradesh.

Authorities have begun planning mass evacuations and stocking shelters with rations. Disaster relief teams are also being sent to the two states which will bear the brunt of the storm.

India's eastern coast and Bangladesh are routinely hit by cyclonic storms between April and November which cause deaths and widespread damage to property.

Last October as many as 500,000 people in India were evacuated when a severe cyclone called Phailin swept through Orissa and Andhra Pradesh states.

In December 2011, Cyclone Thane hit the southern state of Tamil Nadu, killing dozens of people.

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