The 38th meeting of the Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) held on Saturday discussed the preparedness for any earthquake in the city and the ongoing H3N2 Flu situation.
The meeting was held under the Chairmanship of Lt. Governor V.K. Saxena.
Vice Chairman of DDMA, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and Revenue Minister Kailash Gehlot apart from the Chief Secretary, Special Commissioner (Police), Divisional Commissioner, Secretary (Health), VC, DDA, Commissioner MCD and top representatives of Army, NDMA, NIDM, National Institute of Seismology and all District Magistrates were present in the meeting.
Held in the wake of the disastrous earthquakes in Turkey and Syria, the meeting took stock of the preparedness and deliberated upon charting and augmenting the way forward, in case of an earthquake in the city which fell in the ‘High Damage Risk Zone IV’ on the seismic map of India. The prevalent situation of H3N2 Flu, H1N1 Flu and Covid-19 were also discussed in the meeting.
Stressing that disasters did not give prior information before manifesting themselves, the Lt. Governor emphasised upon the need to be completely prepared to face eventuality, even if it entailed erring on the side of caution. Recounting his experience of the Gujarat earthquake that had caused widespread destruction, Saxena said that Delhi needed to be fully prepared to handle any disaster and preparations to this effect should be put in place from today (Saturday) itself.
The Lt. Governor asked for retrofitting of all schools, hospitals, police stations, other critical government offices and vulnerable buildings especially in the ‘Special Area’ and old Delhi localities, according to the Earthquake Resilient Building Code. He also asked to identify open spaces across the Capital for rescue operations in the event of an earthquake and also the hospital at the level of every District and Sub Division for emergency response.
Saxena said that works should be started on the same in a time-bound manner.
The Chief Minister stressed upon the need to compile and tabulate all reports of different committees constituted from time to time with regards to mitigation of disasters and thereafter effects and also underlined the need to make government offices like the Delhi Secretariat and Police Headquarters, earthquake-resistant through retrofitting.
Kejriwal underlined that once all reports were collated and compiled along with the actions taken on them so far, the future course of action may be decided.
It was agreed that the Divisional Commissioner, who is also the Nodal Officer and Convenor of DDMA, will undertake this exercise and put it up for consideration and further directions of the DDMA in its next meeting.