CHENNAI, Oct 31 � Severe cyclonic storm �Nilam� today hit Tamil Nadu coast making landfall near Mahabalipuram, about 55 kms from here, reports PTI.
The cyclone was crossing the coast South of Chennai as observed at 4 pm, a bulletin issued by the Area Cyclone Warning Centre here said.
The system would take two hours to cross the coast and then move further northwards before weakening gradually, it said.
About 4,000 people residing close to the coast in Mahabalipuram, a famous tourist spot known for its shore temples and sculptures, have been evacuated to safer places, officials said.
People in the affected areas have been advised to remain indoors till tonight while state government employees were asked to leave for their homes at 3 pm. A holiday has been announced for educational institutions in coastal districts for tomorrow.
Chennai city is experiencing strong wind though the intensity of rain is less and power supply.