India moving towards holistic disaster management: Minister
 Source : News Bharati English  Date : 04-Dec-2014

New Delhi, Dec 4: Inaugurating the two-day roundtable meeting on ‘Innovations in Technologies for Disaster Rescue Efforts amongst Asia-Europe Meeting Countries’, Union Minister of State for Home Affairs Haribhai P Chaudhary said that India was moving towards a holistic disaster mitigation and management action plan.

The Minister said that it was the primary duty of the state and the community to save lives whenever a natural calamity strikes.

Stressing the imperative need for worldwide cooperation in tackling disasters, Chaudhary said that disasters do not respect artificial boundaries created by nation-states.

He said that natural calamities often strike with such ferocity that it might erode the years of painstaking development efforts in one sweep.

The Minister said disaster response required customized solutions in terms of sudden large-scale transportation needs. He said that India has been able to minimize loss of human lives during disasters due to precise weather forecasting by the India Meteorological Department.

Addressing the gathering Secretary (Border Management) in the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), Snehlata Kumar remarked that disasters of late have increased in frequency and scale. She observed that the Asia-Pacific region recorded 75% of disasters, resulting in 2/3rd of casualties recorded worldwide.

Voicing concern over the very high casualties during the recent earthquakes in China, Japan and Indonesia, she called for devising an effective risk finance and insurance mechanism especially for the poor people.

Secretary (East) in the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) Anil Wadhwa, Director-General, FICCI, Dr. Arbind Prasad and Joint Secretary (Disaster Management), MHA GVV Sarma also spoke on the occasion.

On the occasion, Haribhai Parathibhai Chaudhary also inaugurated the Virtual Knowledge Portal (VKP), a web based tool to share knowledge & best practices related to natural disaster risk assessment, mitigation, and response. A meeting of the 24x7 Point of Contact (PoCs) of the East Asia Summit (EAS) countries will also be held during the two-day event.

The two-day Meeting is being attended by the representatives of ASEM and EAS countries. Delegates from International Organizations such as ADPC, UN-SPIDER, UNICEF, UNESCAP, NSET and ECHO are also participating in the deliberations.