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Rescue, Relief and Rehabilitation

 

Natural Disasters like floods cause deaths and damage to property and infrastructure. 

Monitoring floods with the ultimate aim of predicting them, and managing the rescue and rehabilitation operations during and after the calamity, has been a subject of discussion various forums. It is generally agreed that rescue, relief and rehabilitation of those affected by floods are the most important aspects of flood disaster management.

While the efforts of central and state governments are primary, there are many other agencies involved in relief measures like the District Disaster Management Authority (DDMA), the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), Municipalities/Panchayats, the India Meteorological Department (IMD),the Central Water Commission  (CWC), etc. The role played by NGOs and social workers is equally important. The rescue, relief and rehabilitation activities mainly include:

1.     To take position in the flood affected region to meet the contingencies arising out of the calamity and to arrange relief measures.

2.     To supervise and to provide funds for the rescue and relief operations.

3.     To monitor repair/restoration and rehabilitation work of the damaged properties and habitation.

4.     To undertake long-term measures by coordinating the activities of different NGOs, Government agencies etc. in order to minimize the impact of floods and human casualties.

5.     To monitor hunger and starvation due to food scarcity on account of the flood and provide food to the needy.

The steps that should be taken by the authorities as post flood relief measures are:

 

1.     Rapid needs assessments should be carried out and information shared with government and other agencies engaged in rescue relief and rehabilitation.

2.     To ensure clean drinking water supply through tankers and distribution of chlorine tablets in all the affected areas to reduce the incidence of diarrhea. Oversee the proper functioning of hospitals and medical camps.

3.     Proper identification of the deceased through DNA finger printing, and immediate disposal of dead bodies to prevent the spread of epidemic and environmental pollution.

4.     The district and state authorities should coordinate with the army personnel so that army personnel are deployed in areas that are most affected and need immediate attention.

5.     The state authorities should make proper arrangement for distribution of food, tents, blankets and other essential commodities in flood affected areas.

6.     Vector control measures should be taken up by spraying the dwellings with insecticides.

7.     Mobile field hospitals should be set up close to the relief camps to serve the evacuated population.

8.     Loss and damage surveys should be taken up and adequate monetary relief should be provided to the victims.

9.     The sanitary workers should come into action immediately after the floods to clear the piled up garbage.

10. Teams of social workers, psychologists and psychiatrists should be made available by the state to counsel the victims.

11. Power transmission lines should be repaired and brought back into service as soon as possible.

12. Authorities should remain in contact with the public through various media platforms and provide them proper guidance.

13. To mobilize local communities to strengthen the emergency relief operations.

14. The Government should involve the corporate sector in the relief and rehabilitation process.

 

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Notes & Handouts

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