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Odisha now on path towards tsunami readiness

8/10/2021 at 7:36 PM

Bhubaneswar, Oct 8: With International accolades in cyclone, flood and lightening management, state government have initiated the move to make the coastal villages tsunami ready.  This was decided in the State Executive Committee meeting held under the Chairmanship of Chief Secretary Suresh Chandra Mahapatra from Lokseba Bhawan on digital mode wherein Development Commissioner and Special Relief Commission Pradeep Kumar Jena outlined the technical, financial and administrative contours of disaster management for discussion. 

Considering the erratic rainfall pattern in recent years, Chief Secretary Mahapatra directed to develop the capacity for urban flood management. He also directed to prepare for handling of fire and other emergency accidents in high raised buildings. Further Mahapatra directed to strengthen the disaster fighting arm of the state with high-tech equipments and capacity building trainings on multi-hazard responses.

 Development Commissioner Jena appraised that two villages viz. Noliasahi in Jagatsingpur district and Venkatraipur in Ganjam district received the UNESCO-Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC)’s recognition as first tsunami ready Indian villages in the Indian Ocean region. He placed the proposal for making more 326 villages along Odisha coast tsunami ready. The Committee accorded sanction of around Rs 7.17 cr for implementation of tsunami ready programme in these villages.

 The committee also decided to develop special urban flood management unit in the ODRAF. It was also decided that the fire service units would be strengthened with hi-tech equipments and training to manage the fire and other accidents in high raised buildings, particularly in urban industrial areas of the State.

 Capacity building of the disaster fighting arms from village to state level was emphasized in the meeting. It was decided to build up the capacity of shelter level volunteers, members of women self-help groups (WSHGs), members of the panchayati raj institutions (PRI) and members of the Odisha disaster rapid action force ( ODRAF).

 Available data show, Odisha has 814 multipurpose cyclone and flood shelters. Each centre has around 50 shelter level volunteers and 25 management and maintenance volunteers.  They serve as first responders to any disaster in their locality. It was decided to train around 40,700 shelter level volunteers and 20,350 maintenance and management volunteers. The training programme would mainly focus on capacity building in search and rescue operation, first-aid, counseling, shelter management, equipment management and shelter level documentation. The committee sanctioned an estimated budget of Rs. 15.74 cr for the purpose.

 Considering the number of WSHGs ( 61 lakh in State), it was decided to train their members in phased manner in collaboration with State Mission Shakti department  In the first phase, around 3 lakh members including President, Secretary, and Treasurer of each group would be trained An estimated budget of Rs.1.30 was approved for the purpose. Similarly, the training for around 15,000 PRI members would be implemented in phases through State Institute for Rural Development and Panchayati Raj ( SIRD&PR). The budget of Rs.1.27 cr was sanctioned for this training.

 Further, it was decided to sharpen the capacity of ODRF and fire service units in the matters like handling of issues in collapsed structure, search and rescue, rope rescue, equipment maintenance, under water life saving, handling of unprecedented emergencies etc. It was decided to have two types training programs i.e. in-house training and training in collaboration with other centres of excellence. An estimated budget of around Rs 1.28 crore was sanctioned for the purpose.  

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