India’s First National Disaster Management Plan; Explained

Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi released the National Disaster Management Plan (NDMP) and did something which no one was expecting, but wanted. This is the first ever national plan prepared in the country, aiming to make India disaster resilient and significantly reduce the loss of lives and assets. The plan is based on the four priority themes of the “Sendai Framework,” namely: understanding disaster risk, improving disaster risk governance, investing in disaster risk reduction (through structural and non-structural measures) and disaster preparedness, early warning and building back better in the aftermath of a disaster.

The function where it happened

Minister of Home Affairs Shri Rajnath Singh, Minster of State for Home Affairs Shri Kiren Rijiju, and senior officers of the Prime Minister’s Office, officials from Ministry of Home Affairs and National Disaster Management Authority were present during the function held to discuss the topic. The NDMP is a dynamic document in the sense that it will be periodically improved keeping up with the emerging global best practices and knowledge bases in disaster management.

Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction

The NDMP has been aligned broadly with the goals and priorities set out in the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction. The Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030, adopted at the 3rd UN World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction in Japanese city Sendai on March 18 last year, outlines seven clear targets and four priorities for action to prevent new and reduce existing disaster risks.

These are – Understanding disaster risk; Strengthening disaster risk governance to manage disaster risk; Investing in disaster reduction for resilience and Enhancing disaster preparedness for effective response, and to “Build Back Better” in recovery, rehabilitation and reconstruction.

Congratulations message from UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction

The head of the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, Mr. Robert Glasser, today congratulated the Indian Prime Minister Modi and his government for producing the country’s first ever National Disaster Management Plan. The Government of India is one of the first in the world to come out publicly with a plan which seeks to implement the four priorities for action of the Sendai Framework, focused on spreading a greater understanding of disaster risk through education and public information, investing in disaster resilient infrastructure and committing to improved disaster preparedness and building back better in recovery, rehabilitation and reconstruction.

This plan is a further boost to disaster risk governance in India following the inauguration of India’s National Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction two years ago. The country’s faces a formidable range of both man-made and natural hazards as evidenced by the drought which is currently affecting over 300 million people. India hosted the Asian Ministerial Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction from November 2-5 in New Delhi.

NDMP Highlights

The plan covers all phases of disaster management: prevention, mitigation, response and recovery. It provides for horizontal and vertical integration among all the agencies and departments of the Government.

The plan also emphasize on the roles and responsibilities of all levels of Government right up to Panchayat and Urban Local Body level in a matrix format. The plan has a regional approach, which will be beneficial not only for disaster management but also for development planning. The plan has been designed in such a way that it can be implemented in a scalable manner in all phases of disaster management.

It also identifies major activities such as early warning, information dissemination, medical care, fuel, transportation, search and rescue, evacuation, etc. to serve as a checklist for agencies responding to a disaster.

It also provides a generalized framework for recovery and offers flexibility to assess a situation and build back better.

To prepare communities to cope with disasters, it emphasizes on a greater need for Information, Education and Communication activities.

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