Friday, June 03, 2011

Consultative Committee of Home Ministry Discusses Disaster Management

A meeting of the Consultative Committee of the Ministry of Home Affairs was held here today under the Chairmanship of the Union Home Minister, Shri P. Chidambaram for discussion on the subject of Disaster Management. This was the third meeting of the Committee during 2011.

2. In his address at the meeting, the Union Home Minister said that the Disaster Management set-up in the country has changed from reactive to pro-active in the last 5 years, especially after the enactment of the Disaster Management Act, 2005. He pointed out that though relief is an important activity even today for any kind of disaster, in the changed scenario, prevention, mitigation, preparedness and reconstruction assume greater significance. 3. The Home Minister said that the Ministry has allocated a lot of funds for revamping the fire services in the country, especially for purchase of modern fire fighting equipment and specialized training to fire-fighters. The Civil Defence set- up in the country has changed from town-centric to district-centric approach for involvement of more number of youth with a special focus on 100 multi -hazard districts in the country. Over the years, the National Disaster Response Force has saved more than 1.4 lakh lives in different search and rescue operations. The force is equipped with all modern equipment. The Minister informed that the Ministry of Water Resources is taking various initiatives for embankments of the rivers originating from Nepal to prevent floods in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar. The Minister pointed out that the States are required to implement various safety regulations so as to prevent manmade disasters. 4. Participating in the discussion, members welcomed the initiatives taken by the Government for better disaster management in the country. They stressed the need for better ground-level implementation of various initiatives related to disaster mitigation and preparedness. 5. Those who attended the meeting included S/Shri Lalu Prasad, Dr. Thokchom Meinya, Khagen Das, Bhismashankar alias Kushal Tiwari, Dr. Monazir Hassan, D.B. Chandre Gowda, Dr. Rattan Singh Ajnala, J.P. Aggarwal and Ismail Hussain from the Lok Sabha; S/Shri Thomas Sangma, Bhubaneswar Kalita, H.K. Dua Dr. K. Keshava Rao, Prof. Ram Gopal Yadav, Mohd. Ali Khan, Dr. Ashok Sekhar Ganguly from the Rajya Sabha. 6. The Ministers of State for Home, Shri Mullappally Ramachandran and Shri Gurudas Kamat were among those present in the meeting.