PUDUCHERRY: Lieutenant Governor Ajay Kumar Singh suggested that the department of Revenue and Disaster Management explore the viability of utilizing the satellite link to alert the people with updates during emergency at the time of cyclones and other natural calamities. With the terrestrial communication links often failing during calamities, establishment of V-SAT communication links is required for communication.
The Lt Governor visited the Disaster Management Operation Centre on Monday to review the mitigating measures put in place, also advised the department to extend the facilities to the regions of Karaikal, Mahe and Yanam. Through a power point presentation given by S Sundaravadivelu, Revenue Secretary and District Collector, the action being taken by the Centre during the disasters was briefed to him.
It was also informed that an Emergency Support Functioning Team has been formed to function under the Head of respective District Heads. When the Lt Governor enquired about alerting the people when all the communication channels fails, it was explained that alerts would be made through 65 sets of Very High Frequency Radio Systems connected with emergency control room in the centre.
It may be noted that the Union Finance Minister, Arun Jaitley, in his budget had announced a provision of Rs 188 crore to Puducherry in order to be prepared to face annual calamities like cyclones, floods and even is vulnerable to the Tsunami.
In the previous financial year, Rs 100 crore of Additional Central Assistance (ACA) was provided for Coastal Disaster Risk Reduction Project by the Union government. A draft State disaster Management Plan has been prepared by the government, after holding discussions with NGOs and experts. This includes ward and village level plan by involving NGOs and people. This has to be given shape, sources said.
With Puducherry having no dedicated force for the search and rescue operations, creation of a Response Force has also been mooted. This along with the assistance of National Disaster Response Force.
Establishing of V-SAT communication links was also mooted. This also involves procurement of satellite phones for the district collectors of Puducherry and Karaikal and regional administrators of Mahe and Yanam.