The National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) has asked Punjab to focus on preventive steps also besides preparedness and response to meet any eventuality in case of any kind of disaster. Besides this, NDMA has also underlined the need for strict adherence to National Building Code as it was found that unsafe buildings inflicted more causalities in case of any earthquake.These observations were made here today by NDMA member Mr. Kamal Kishore while reviewing the preparation status of State Disaster Management Plan (SDMP) and District Disaster Management Plan (DDMP). He further said that the management of any disaster was not only government’s job , everybody has to play a role in creating awareness besides having training to meet any kind of disaster thereby mitigating the sufferings of victims of any disaster. After reviewing the presentation on DDMP of Rupnagar made by Deputy Commissioner Ms. Tanu Kashyap, the NDMA member said that it was one of the best district plans he had come through and sought more frank feedback from the state for better planning of disaster management.
Earlier, Mr. Samir Kumar, Secretary Revenue-cum-Director Disaster Management, Punjab said that the SDMP has already been sent to NDMA after approval of State Executive Committee and to tackle disaster at the micro level 22 DDMPs have been prepared. He pointed out that the Punjab was mainly confronted with threat perceptions of floods, water logging, drought, desertification, soil erosion, earthquake, cancer, road & rail accident, hailstorm, gale, lightening squall, thunderstorm, heat/cold wave, fire, terrorist activities, war, and soil/water/air pollution.Underlining the need for sufficient trained manpower for effective disaster response, Mr. Samir Kumar informed that the state has till date trained 1, 30,000 students and 65,000 villagers. Demanding funds to the tune of Rs. 25 crore, he said that these were required for flood control/earthquakes, health related equipments/medicines stock, irrigation department equipments like boats, fire tenders, building jack equipment, national school safety program, disaster risk reduction strategies, hazard risk vulnerability, resource mapping and data collection inventories.
He informed that the state government has decided to set up five Regional Emergency Operation Centers at Amritsar, Ludhiana, Bathinda, Ferozepur and Jalandhar equipped with sophisticated equipment loaded in ready to move special trucks, jeeps and motorcycles to deal with different type of disasters including road accidents.Mr. NS Kalsi, Additional Chief Secretary , PWD, Mr. Kahan Singh Pannu, Secretary Irrigation, Mr. Priyank Bharti, Director Local bodies, Mr. Vikas Garg, Special Secretary Health, Mr. PK Sinha, IGP/Provisioning, Dr Naresh Kumar, IGP/PAP also expressed their views.