Thursday, October 01, 2020

Regional

Himachal CS stresses to keep vigil and readiness to mitigate disasters

Bijender Sharma | August 06, 2020 05:43 PM

SHIMLA: The 14th meeting of State Executive Committee (SEC) under Disaster Management Act, 2005 was held here today under the Chairmanship of Chief Secretary Anil Khachi.

Khachi stressed the need to keep constant vigil and readiness to mitigate the disasters. He said that people should be made aware about preparedness during such hazardous situations. He said that mock drills and exercises should be conducted after COVID-19 situation eases and advised the Disaster Management Cell to explore the possibilities of conducting training through online mode.

He said that Himachal Pradesh is prone to various hazards both natural and manmade, which consists of earthquakes, landslides, flash floods, snow avalanches, droughts, domestic and wild fires, road accidents, stampede, etc. However, the hazard which poses biggest threat to the State is earthquake, as the State has felt tremors more than 80 times having a magnitude of 4.0 and above on Richter scale.

Chief Secretary said that among other damage to the infrastructure and essential facilities, the communication is the first casuality during such disasters. He said that strong independent communication should be set up to meet out the emergencies, keeping in view the tough geographical condition of the State. He said that wireless communication network through amateur radio (HAM), is one of the most effective and alternative medium of communication, which can play a significant role in providing reliable communication when other communications fail.

He said that the state government has notified the raising of Himachal Pradesh State Disaster Response Force (HPSDRF) in January, 2020 in line with National Disaster Response Force. He said that as approved by the State Cabinet, till the raising of separate HPSDRF, one company strength each drawn from HP Police will be stationed at Shimla, Mandi and Dharamshala. He said that rupees Five crore has already been sanctioned to Police Department to equip the SDRF. He directed that the Police Department may immediately start planning for the training of the Staff deployed for HPSDRF.

Khachi said that school and college buildings should be strengthened as they are most useful lifeline structures during disasters. He also said that safety audit of lifeline buildings should be done, and further measures must be taken for its retrofitting. He directed the DM Cell, DDMA and 39 Departments to update their Disaster Management plans. He directed the MPP and Power Department to send report of early warning and alert system by the dam authorities in the State within one week.

Chief Secretary also interacted with Deputy Commissioners, Professors of IIT Roorkee and IIT Mandi through video conferencing for their proposals sent to SDMA for funding under the Mitigation Fund.

Principal Secretary Revenue-Disaster Management Onkar Chand Sharma informed that Police Department has been given funds for purchase of V-SAT for far flung areas and Police force for better connectivity. He said that Police Department has provided funds to purchase 37 I-SATs and V-SATs at 75 locations. At present 74 I-SATs are available in the State. He said that 22 I-SAT have been provided to all District Head quarters, SDMs of all tribal sub divisions. In addition to this eight I-SATs have been provided to Lahaul-Spiti District by Pragaya NGO for black spot along with Manali Leh road communication connectivity.

Have something to say? Post your comment