Mumbai: As it is highly likely that cyclone Nisarga will inundate low-lying areas of Mumbai, the BMC asked about 200 residents of Worli Koliwada and Haji Ali Dargah areas to vacate their houses and shift to the Worli Koli Samaj Bhavan.
According to Sharad Koli, a local fisherman and resident of Worli, "several residents have moved to a BMC shelter and others to the homes of their friends or relatives." Koli was assisting Mumbai Police and civic officials with the evacuation.
Mamta Pawar, a resident of Worli village, told The Free Press Journal, "We left our house with all our belongings, including jewellery. I am very afraid my house might be affected. I am newly married and we had carried out a lot of interior designing work in the house. I can only pray that my house is spared."
More than two months ago, Worli village had been sealed to prevent the spread of coronavirus cases. Says Pawar, "For the last three months, we were not allowed to leave our homes and, now, due to the cyclone, the first thing we have been asked to do is to shift to a safer place."
According to stall-owner Mohmaad Ibrahim Shaikh, who sells artificial jewellery inside the Haji Ali Dargah, around 80 people were asked to leave the dargah, as it stands in the middle of the sea.
"The police have asked us to leave and take shelter in the nearby Haji Ali garden. But how can we stay there in the rain, without a roof over our heads? So, I decided to come to my relative's house at Lotus Cinema near Nehru Planetarium. First, in the lockdown, we lost our livelihoods; and, now, the cyclone is causing us to leave our shanties. I don't know how much more suffering is in store for poor folks like us," said a distressed Shaikh.