THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Soaring temperatures in the state have led to a widespread increase in heat-related illness and potable water scarcity. For better coordination of relief measures during the time, the Local Self Government Department (LSGD) has decided to set up a monitoring cell at the State Secretariat. The monitoring cell comprises of members like LSGD (FM) deputy secretary, undersecretary, section officer and others.
At the same time, for containing summer woes, the panchayat director, as well as the urban affairs director, were provided with certain directives including ensuring availability of potable water in panchayat and urban areas.
“The directive was issued by LSG (Urban) secretary T Mithra. In it, the panchayat director and the urban affairs director were asked to monitor the drinking water availability in panchayats and urban areas and to take proper measures for drinking water distribution if needed,” said an officer of LSGD.
The directive also mandates the panchayat deputy directors and regional joint directors to submit a weekly report regarding the heat-related problems to the panchayat and urban affairs directors respectively.
The directors upon receiving the reports will have to compile and submit the same to the state government. In case of emergencies, a daily report has also been necessitated from the concerned. At the same time, urban affairs director R Girija said barring a few places none of the urban areas at present has a water crisis.
Meanwhile, she added if water woes arise the department is fully prepared to contain the same. Corroborating the same, panchayat additional director M P Ajith Kumar said the water scarcity is yet to be reported in the state. But we have asked the panchayats to gear up itself if such a crisis erupts.
It was the other day that the State Disaster Management Authority had come out with a guideline for combating incidents of heatstroke.In it, it has been specified that respective District Disaster Management Authority could take a call on implementing activities to contain heatwave or related incidents in the affected areas by using the fund released from the State Disaster Response Fund. While directing the local bodies and departments concerned to ensure the upkeep of water bodies that fall under their respective jurisdiction, it reminds the Groundwater Department to keep in check the unscrupulous use or overpumping of groundwater.
Directive to panchayat, urban affairs directors
The panchayat director and urban affairs director, have been provided with certain directives, including ensuring availability of potable water in panchayat and urban areas. They have been asked to monitor potable water availability in panchayats and urban areas and take proper measures for potable water distribution if needed