Shillong, May 12: The State Disaster Management Authority, Meghalaya today organised a one day Incidence Response System (IRS) Training for State Incidence Response Team in collaboration with National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA), New Delhi at Yojana Bhavan, Main Secretariat Building, Shillong. The inaugural function was attended by the Deputy Chief Minister in charge Revenue and Disaster Management, Meghalaya, Prof. R C. Laloo as the Chief Guest. Also present were the Meghalaya Chief Secretary, Shri K. S. Kropha, Additional Chief Secretaries, Shri P. W. Ingty and Shri Y. Tsering and Brigadier K. Singh, Consultant, NDMA, New Delhi.
During the inaugural session, the Chief Guest also released the Meghalaya State Disaster Management Plan-2016.
In his address, the Deputy Chief Minister said that the State of Meghalaya is vulnerable to seismic disturbances as it falls under Zone V of the seismic zones. Besides, other natural disasters like floods, storms, landslides, etc are recurrent phenomena. He expressed hoped that the training will further enhance the ability of the government functionaries in management and execution of different tasks in the event of disasters. He informed that the State Government has come up with the Disaster Management Plan in consultation with NDMA, Government departments, stakeholders, civil societies, by putting special focus on preparedness and mitigation in times of disasters, adding that preparedness is the only way we can combat a natural disaster. He expressed hoped that the State Incidence Response Team will collectively take the responsibility to generate awareness among the public on how to deal in the event of disasters.
The Chief Secretary, in his speech, reminded the meeting of the great devastation from the two major quakes of 1897 and 1950 and other natural disasters which have been witnessed in recent years. As time goes by, we see high rise buildings towering in every nook and corner of the State and this has put people’s lives and properties at a higher risk. As we sit in the highest seismic zone, we need to be prepared to overcome the challenges in the event of disasters, said the Chief Secretary. Therefore, he informed that the Building Bye Laws and the State Disaster Plan have been formulated to confront with all kinds of challenges arising from natural disasters. He said that proper and organised mechanism system needs to be put in place so that we are prepared to deal with all kinds of disasters. He said that preparedness is the need of the hour and Central and State Government departments have a crucial role to play in generating awareness on the level of preparedness so that we can reduce calamities to a great extent.