At least 6,827 people were evacuated from the eight coastal districts of Gujarat on Monday as Cyclone Biparjoy approaches the state and neighbouring southern Pakistan.

The cyclone is expected to make landfall on Thursday afternoon between Mandvi in Gujarat and Karachi in Pakistan with a maximum sustained wind speed of 125 to 135 kilometres per hour with gusts up to 150 kilometres per hour.

The state government in a state said that people have been evacuated from the districts of Kutch, Porbandar, Junagadh, Jamnagar, Devbhoomi-Dwarka, Gir-Somnath, Morbi and Rajkot.

Teams of the National Disaster Response Force and the State Disaster Response Force have been been deployed for rescue operations in areas where raw houses, huts or low-lying areas get flooded due to heavy rainfall or storms.

The state government has also shut down ports at Kandla, Okha, Porbandar, Salaya, Bedi, Navlakhi, Mandvi and Jakhau, reported The Indian Express.

The Western Railway has short-terminated over 50 trains heading to coastal areas of Gujarat in view of the cyclone.

On Tuesday, the cyclone weakened from “extremely severe cyclonic storm”, which is the second-highest category based on strength, to “very severe cyclonic storm”, the India Meteorological Department said.

Heavy rainfall is expected in parts of Kutch, Devbhumi Dwarka, Porbandar, Jamnagar, Junagarh and Rajkot districts, a weather bulletin said.

The cyclone is expected to destroy thatched houses, roads as well as standing crops, and disrupt trains, electricity services and signalling systems in the northern and western coastal districts of Gujarat, the weather department warned.

There is also potential threat from flying objects as visibility will be severely low due to salt spray, it said.