Chapters :
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Disaster Management – 05

  • There is an urgent need to put the National Disaster Mitigation Fund and state disaster management funds into operation. States such as Bihar, which are leading in this regard, should share lessons on how to realise this at the state level.
  • States should have decision-making power regarding whether state disaster management authorities control funds for risk reduction, or whether these are distributed to government departments.
  • Public-private partnerships should be looked at more seriously as alternative modes of financing. Models such as the Surat Climate Change Trust, a collaboration between the private sector and the urban local body in Surat, Gujarat, should be studied and, if suitable, replicated.
  • Risk-transfer mechanisms and insurance should be scaled up to support risk reduction.
  • States should include downscaled climate projections into SDMPs, so that future and evolving risks can be taken into account.
  • Using data that are already being uploaded onto platforms such as the Open Government Data Platform can help to synthesise a clearer understanding of vulnerability.
  • There is a need to expand capacity-building activities on disaster management within departments, so that they include all stages of the disaster cycle, rather than the current emphasis on emergency response.
  • It is important to ensure the participation of nodal officials from all key state government departments while revising SDMPs; working with technical institutions and NGOs to train nodal officials is also useful.
  • The needs of women and other marginalised groups must be considered across all types of disaster risk management activity, rather than only response and relief activities, as is currently the case.
  • Publicly available census data on sex, age and disability need to be included in vulnerability analyses.
  • Clearer guidelines need to be issued for the genuine participation of vulnerable communities in processes to develop district disaster management plans.
  • Officials from state disaster management authorities should be trained in gender-responsive budgeting and gender mainstreaming.
  • Collaboration with state and central scientific institutions would help state disaster management authorities to track changing risk and risk of losses through modelling, rather than only measuring disaster impacts.
  • The National Disaster Management Authority should prepare guidelines and/ or a framework to support subnational governments in aligning with the Sendai Framework.
Way Forward
  • Disasters are no longer to be considered as occurrences that are to be managed through emergency response services. So, there is a need to foster a culture of prevention and identification of the key issues to be addressed especially in the development process.
  • The path ahead for managing disasters is to bring in a people-centered development strategy.
  • Strategies for disaster management should be accompanied by strong political will, keenness and commitment on the part of all concerned actors involved in the exercise.
  • Educating people in Disaster Risk Reduction is the need of the hour and it can be done through decentralised planning, implementation and monitoring and control.
  • The major strategies which should get prominence are institutionalising national systems and capacities, strengthening governance mechanisms at local level, building community resilience, reducing the vulnerabilities of the communities at risk and public private people partnerships etc.
Disaster Management has to embark upon a strategy aimed at holistic human development integrating the sustainable development goals, policies and practices that harness people’s strengths instead of vulnerabilities.
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