**Puri:** High tidal waves have hit the Puri beach for the last two days, advancing nearly 100 metres towards the coastline triggering panic among the tourists and makeshift vendors at the beach.
Incessant rains triggered by low pressure for the past few days have the sea waves dangerously advancing towards the main land, posing a major threat to ‘Swarga Dwara’, the famous cremation ground of the Hindus in Puri.
Hundreds of crabs were also noticed coming out of the sea as tidal waves made inroads into the coastline.
The makeshift vendors were forced to push back their makeshift kiosks.
Eyewitnesses said the sea had advanced near the main road.
Odisha coast is a dynamic region where the shoreline is a rapidly changing phenomenon along the coast mainly due to tides, waves, oceanic currents and storm surges. The Puri coastline had been bearing the brunt of erosion for the last few years.
It came into limelight in 2007 when river Mangala opened a new stream near Baliapanda and washed away several tracts of landmass including an extended portion of the Marine Drive Road.
The district administration has started to rope in experts to study the phenomenon.
“The district administration is aware of the whole incident. We will take the advice of experts regarding this issue. There is nothing to panic about it. We will take adequate measures and see to it that the incident of 2007 is not repeated,” said Madhusudan Das, Sub-Collector, Puri.
“Moreover, we have taken some preventive measures so that there will be no casualties. The tourists have been forewarned, the lifeguards are alert, fishermen are asked to be cautious while venturing into the sea,” he added.