Sikkim CS discusses monsoon preparedness with line departments

Sikkim CS discusses monsoon preparedness with line departments
Sikkim CS discusses monsoon preparedness with line departments
Sikkim CS discusses monsoon preparedness with line departments

Gangtok, 01 May (IPR): The annual ‘Pre Monsoon Preparedness Meeting’ organised by Sikkim State Disaster Management Authority (SSDMA) was held today in the Conference Hall of Tashiling Secretariat, Gangtok. Chaired by Mr VB Pathak, Chief Secretary, Government of Sikkim, the meeting was attended by the Heads of Line Departments, DIG-Range, District Collectors (DCs) of all six districts, Senior Officers from various departments,including Fire and Emergency Services and Home Guards and Civil Defence.
Also present were officers from Department of Telecommunications (Government of India),
Central Water Commission (CWC), Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP), Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB), Border Roads Organisation (BRO), National Highways and Infrastructure Development Corporation Ltd.(NHIDCL), India Meteorological Department (IMD), Geological Survey of India(GSI) and representatives from concerned agencies.
Ms Parina Gurung, Additional Director-SSDMA made a power point presentation on various relevant issues related to disaster preparedness in the state. It was informed that in view of the onset of the monsoon season, heavy rainfall, above normal expected level, has been predicted for Sikkim by India Meteorological Department (IMD). Further, post the October’2023 flood disaster in Sikkim, monsoon related threats are likely to affect the state in a major way. Preparedness is thus required in order to bring together various stakeholders and line departments for effective mitigation and handling of any impending disaster related threats.
The composition and role of State Executive Committee (SEC) in disaster mitigation were discussed. Similarly, it was informed that following the guidelines on Incident Response System issued by National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) for effective, efficient and comprehensive management of disasters in the State of Sikkim, a State Level Incident Response System Organisation (IRSO) was formed wherein each of the line departments has been given different functions to perform. It maybe informed that incase of occurrence of disaster, the State Level Incident Response Team (IRT) will be activated by the Responsible Officer (RO) represented by the Chief Secretary of the Government of Sikkim.
The items and norms of expenditure for assistance from NDRF and SDRF and role of SSDMA were also discussed during the presentation.

Sikkim CS discusses monsoon preparedness with line departments
Sikkim CS discusses monsoon preparedness with line departments

The Chief Secretary directed for formulation of mechanism for effective dissemination of information related to disaster warning between various line departments. Mr Pathak further advised that awareness should be given for prevention of water borne diseases and directed the Health Department, Urban Development Department and District Administration to collaborate on this. Similarly, he suggested inclusion of dedicated manpower from six platoons in NDRF and directed the District Collectors to identify unused infrastructure in their respective district for utilisation as SDRF barracks.
Mr Shashwat Rai, Executive Engineer-Central Water Commission (CWC) briefly presented the role of CWC and flood forecasting activities undertaken by the organisation.
Chief Secretary Mr VB Pathak called for strengthening of forecasting system for prompt and effective dissemination of information.
Brig. Manoj Gupta, Chief Engineer, Project Swastik, Border Roads Organisation (BRO) apprised on the status of road connectivity in the affected areas of Sikkim, post the October flood disaster.
The Chief Secretary directed the Roads and Bridges Department, NHIDCL and relevant departments to expedite construction and fast track repairing of all roads leading to main tourist destinations of Sikkim.
Dr GN Raha, Head, IMD Gangtok shared monsoon forecasts for the coming months stressing that the intensity of rainfall is likely to be higher in June. He also apprised that weather forecasts are being shared regularly via different platforms and special bulletins will be prepared and disseminated widely during unnatural occurrences.
Mr Prabhakar Rai, Special Secretary-cum-Director-SSDMA supported by line department officers made presentations on the roles of various line departments and relevant organisations like NDRF/SDRF, Home Guards and Civil Defence, Army, ITBP, SSB, BRO, IMD and GSI in monsoon preparedness. It was suggested that the departments designate a nodal officer from their respective department for effective communication with SSDMA.
The Chief Secretary sought details from various departments and district administration regarding issues faced and inquired about the requirement of equipment, material, vehicles, manpower, etc under various sectors for disaster preparedness.
Earlier, Mr Prabhakar Rai, Special Secretary-cum-Director-SSDMA delivered the welcome address while the vote of thanks was proposed by Mr Rajiv Roka, Additional Director-SSDMA.
Report from DIO Gangtok