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Disaster Management
A disaster refers to a catastrophe, mishap, calamity or grave occurrence from natural or man-made causes, which is beyond the coping capacity of the affected community. DM involves a continuous and integrated process of planning, organising, coordinating and implementing measures which are necessary or expedient for: • ¬Prevention of danger or threat of any disaster. • ¬Mitigation or reduction of risk of any disaster or its severity or consequences. • ¬Capacity building including research and knowledge management. • ¬Preparedness to deal with any disaster. • ¬Prompt response to any threatening disaster situation or disaster. • ¬Assessing the severity or magnitude of effects of any disaster. • Evacuation, rescue and relief. • ¬Rehabilitation and reconstruction. A typical DM continuum comprises six elements; the pre-disaster phase includes prevention, mitigation and preparedness, while the post-disaster phase includes response, rehabilitation, reconstruction and recovery.
A legal and institutional framework binds all these elements together Approach • A holistic and integrated approach will be evolved toward disaster management with emphasis on building strategic partnerships at various levels. The themes underpinning the policy are: • Community based DM, including last mile integration of the policy, plans and execution. • ¬Capacity development in all spheres. • ¬Consolidation of past initiatives and best practices. • ¬Cooperation with agencies at national and international levels. • ¬ Multi-sectoral synergy.
Objectives The objectives of the national policy on disaster management are:¬ • Promoting a culture of prevention, preparedness and resilience at all levels through knowledge, innovation and education. • Encouraging mitigation measures based on technology, traditional wisdom and environmental sustainability. • ¬ Mainstreaming disaster management into the developmental planning process. • ¬Establishing institutional and techno-legal frame works to create an enabling regulatory environment and a compliance regime. • Ensuring efficient mechanism for identification, assessment and monitoring of disaster risks. • ¬Developing contemporary forecasting and early warning systems backed by responsive and failsafe communication with information technology support. • ¬Promoting a productive partnership with the media to create awareness and contributing towards capacity development. • ¬Ensuring efficient response and relief with a caring approach towards the needs of the vulnerable sections of the society. • ¬Undertaking reconstruction as an opportunity to build disaster resilient structures and habitat for ensuring safer living. • ¬Promoting productive and proactive partnership with media in disaster management.