Home Kathmandu SAC directs govt to act pronto

SAC directs govt to act pronto

As many as 32 people killed in water-induced disasters since April 13

Kathmandu, July 5, 2016: The State Affairs Committee (SAC) of Parliament on Monday directed the government to make existing networks working in disaster management effective to mitigate the risks of landslides and floods and ensure immediate rescue and relief measures.

Concerned over the increasing risks from landslides and flooding triggered by heavy rains in different parts of the country since the onset of monsoon, parliamentarians discussed the issue with concerned ministers, chiefs of security agencies and concerned departments working in disaster management.

According to the Ministry of Home Affairs, as many as 32 people have been killed in landslides and flooding between April 13 and July 1.

“Government efforts to control risks from water-induced disasters have been inadequate,” said Dil Bahadur Gharti, chairman of the State Affairs Committee and a lawmaker from the Nepali Congress. Gharti also lamented the government for ignoring the earthquake-affected families in many mid-hill districts vulnerable to landslides.

SAC has directed the government and its line agencies and local authorities, along with security agencies—Nepal Police, the Nepal Army and the Armed Police Force—to remain alert to deal with water-inducted disasters.

“Parliamentarians have called for better coordination among those working in disaster preparedness and management from central to regional and local level,” said Bharat Gautam, joint-secretary of the State Affairs Committee.

During Monday’s SAC meeting, Minister for Home Affairs Bhim Rawal presented the preparedness plan.

The Central Disaster Relief Committee under MoHA in April had issued preparedness plan and activities to be undertaken by different agencies, local authorities and development bodies working in disaster management to mitigate the risks of lives and properties from floods and landslides during monsoon this year.

“The meeting chaired by Minister for Home Affairs Rawal had delegated responsibilities to all concerned bodies working in the disaster management, including development partners and humanitarian agencies, to come up with plans and effective measures to reduce the risks from water-induced disasters,” said Binod KC, joint secretary at MoHA. Releasing a circular on Friday, MoHA had asked district authorities and all security agencies to remain alert especially in those areas which are at risk of landslides and flooding.

Army seeks Rs 7 million

KATHMANDU: The Nepal Army has requested the government to allocate Rs 7 million to enhance its institutional capacities to deal with disasters in the country. During a meeting of the State Affairs Committee on Monday, Chief of Army Staff Rajendra Chhetri put forward the proposal, seeking the budget to strengthen the Army’s capacity and address disaster-related issues.