Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has urged the global community to work together on disaster risk reduction.
Inaugurating the three-day ‘Asian Ministerial Conference for Disaster Risk Reduction 2016’ in New Delhi on Thursday, Prime Minister Modi said that the South Asian nation was ready to join hands with other countries in order to build a disaster resilient infrastructure. He also said that India would share its space technology and resources with foreign countries to properly deal with disasters across the globe.
The PM expressed concern over the effect of disasters on economic growth, stressing: “We need to think big and… innovatively.” Modi further requested the participating nations to encourage and prepare women for disaster management work. “Encourage women in disaster management programmes. We have large number of women to support (disaster) affected women,” he told the audience.
On the occasion, the Indian PM revealed his “ten-point agenda” for dealing with disasters. According to the premier, India plans to develop a network of universities in order to effectively deal with disasters. At the same time, he requested the concerned authorities to learn from age-old local practices and implement the same effectively, saying that the learning would certainly help them deal with disasters.
PM Modi believes that it is important for the international community to invest in risk mapping globally and to use technology for enhancing the efficiency of the disaster risk management efforts. He informed the foreign delegates that the Indian Ocean Tsunami Warning System recently became operational and his government ordered the Indian National Centre for Ocean Information Services to issue regional tsunami bulletins. “The same goes for improvements in cyclone early warning. In India, if we compare the impact of cyclone events in 1999 and 2013, we can see the progress we have made. It led to a significant reduction in loss of lives from cyclones. It is now recognised as a global best practice,” he stressed.
Around 1,100 delegates from 61 Asian and Pacific countries, along with 2,900 domestic representatives, attended the three-day conference that ended on Saturday.