Chief minister Trivendra Singh Rawat has directed all the district magistrates to make elaborate preparations for relief and rescue works in case of heavy rain and other emergency scenarios during the monsoon season. The mechanism for disaster relief should be developed in such a way that there is no loss of life due to disaster in the state. The CM also directed the officers to ensure that the response time in times of disaster is not more than 30 minutes. Further, swift provision of disaster relief to the victims should also be ensured. Adequate funds have been made available to the district magistrates under the disaster fund and in the future too, there will not be paucity of funds under this head, said Rawat. The CM said this while chairing a meeting along with chief secretary Utpal Kumar Singh, other senior officers and all district magistrates via video conferencing at the secretariat on Wednesday.
Reviewing the pre-monsoon preparations, the CM directed the district magistrates to identify the disaster prone areas. Special focus should be laid on prevention of water borne diseases during the monsoon and essential services like supply of water and electricity along with health services. The helicopter service provider companies should be directed strictly to focus specially on ensuring immediate relief in times of disaster. The district magistrates were also told to ensure that all employees are at their posts in time of disaster. Special focus should also be laid on cleaning of the drains in the cities. The officers were directed to establish police posts, rescue centres and flood security posts without delay in remote areas. Coordinated and effective efforts can help considerably in protection from disaster scenarios, he stressed. In addition to repairing of all roads in the district, alternate routes should also be facilitated. Rawat directed the district magistrates of Pithoragarh, Uttarkashi, Chamoli and Bageshwar to prepare plans for ensuring swift relief in case of incidents like cloudburst on the Yatra route and trekking routes. The district magistrate should also have clear details of tourists arriving for trekking, he said.
Mechanical excavators should be deployed in areas prone to landslides so that the traffic doesn’t remain blocked for long. In case the road remains blocked for long, the drivers should be provided information about alternate routes on time. All communication systems should also be functioning optimally during the monsoon and disaster scenarios, said Rawat. All the employees concerned should be made to practice on the equipment provided to all districts and Tehsils for use during disaster. The district magistrates should ensure adequate stock of food grains and cooking gas from now itself for the rains to avoid any problem during a disaster situation. Considering the possibility of difficult to access mountainous regions being cut off during the rains, advance stock for up to six months should be arranged as in the past in such sensitive areas. Similarly, medicines for people and animals should also be stocked adequately. The nearby schools and government buildings should be identified for sheltering disaster affected people if needed.
The disaster management secretary Amit Singh Negi made a detailed presentation on directions issued in this regard. Asking the district magistrates to focus on implementing these directions, he also sought information about issues being faced in the implementation. Civil aviation secretary Dilip Jawalkar directed the district magistrates to observe vigilance in the use of drones in the districts while also taking cognisnace of the guidelines of the Directorate General of Civil Aviation in this regard. Care should also be taken to ensure that nobody makes personal use of such equipment, he said.
Additional chief secretaries Om Prakash, Radha Raturi, director general of police Anil Raturi, secretary Bhupinder Kaur Aulakh along with officials of various departments and agencies concerned were also present in the meeting.