My Speech At The Odisha Disaster Preparedness Day


The Odisha Disaster Preparedness Day and National Day for Disaster Reduction is a day of contemplation of the current situation and making resolve for the future. On this day, we remember the valuable human lives lost in Super Cyclone 1999. 

During 23 years since the Super Cyclone, we have done everything possible to make Odisha a safer place during disasters. Odisha today has the most robust infrastructure for disaster management. The world has recognised our efforts in all these years. I would like to thank my 4.5 crore brothers and sisters for their support and solidarity in building a disaster resilient Odisha. 

I appreciate the efforts of PRI members, Mission Shakti Group members, frontline workers like ASHAs and Anganwadi Workers, NGOs and community level volunteers, Government Officials, ODRAF, Fire Services, NDRF and Police personnel for their coordinated work to reduce human casualty. 

During 2022, the state faced floods in the Mahanadi, Baitarani and Subarnarekha River systems, affecting more than 23 lakh people in 16 districts.  Due to robust preparedness and coordinated efforts, we evacuated nearly 2.7 lakh people to safer places and took up timely relief and restoration measures.  

Our geographic location makes us prone to natural disasters. Every life is precious. Nearly 10 thousand people died in Super Cyclone 1999. Then, we did not have safe shelters. During these years, 815 multi-purpose cyclone and flood shelters have been constructed. 55 new shelters are under construction out of Chief Ministers’ Relief Fund. 

For better impact-based forecasting, the Government will set up Telemetric Rain Gauge in all Gram Panchayats, Automatic Weather Station at Block headquarters, and sensors in our River Systems. These steps will help us to get precise real time information for more effective management of disasters. 

To strengthen community driven preparedness, we are training more than 40 thousand volunteers at village and shelter level. Further, the Government is taking up capacity building of elected representatives of Panchayati Raj Institutions, Urban Local Bodies, Mission Shakti Members, ASHAs, Anganwadi Workers, Vana Surakhya Samiti (VSS) Members, as they play a key role in disaster risk reduction.

Besides, Disaster and Pandemic Management is being introduced in the educational curricula of students from standard 4 to Graduation level with a view to preparing Disaster Management Yodhas in every village and households.  

I appeal to all stakeholders and my fellow citizens to come forward and join hands to reaffirm our resolve to create a disaster resilient Odisha

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