Oct 12, 12:48 AM EDT

Eastern India on high alert for massive cyclone

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HYDERABAD, India (AP) -- Heavy rains and gusting winds are ripping through a large swath of India's eastern seaboard, uprooting trees and snapping power cables as a powerful cyclone sweeps through the Bay of Bengal.

Cyclone Hudhud, described as a "very severe" storm by India's meteorological department, could pack winds of 195 kilometers (120 miles) per hour when it makes landfall late Sunday morning.

The cyclone is likely to hit near the city of Visakhapatnam, one of the largest cities in southern India and a major naval base.

Hundreds of thousands of people have been evacuated from the coastal areas of Andhra Pradesh and Orissa states as authorities aim for zero casualties.

Hundreds of shelters have been set up to house the evacuees.

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