Man-made disasters along with the natural ones are a thing to worry in Madhya Pradesh where disaster management is still in the infancy. There is need to teach students practical survival tactics to minimise the disaster damage, Rakesh Dubey, director, DMI, tells Neeraj Santoshi during an interview. Excerpts:
Madhya Pradesh is safer as far as natural disasters are concerned. Your take?
This perception is wrong and it needs to be corrected to avoid complacency among policy makers. The high-powered committee constituted by the Centre has identified 31 disasters and grouped them in five categories. On the basis of the available data, the disasters that occur in MP include floods, earthquakes, hailstorms, droughts, fires, industrial and chemical disasters, landslides and so on.
What people should worry about the most here?
Well, people should worry about all kinds of man-made disasters. But, when it comes to natural disasters, we have to be more cautious about earthquakes, floods and droughts.
Where does MP stand in disaster preparedness?
When it comes to disaster preparedness, MP has a long stretch to cover. There is a need for preparing detailed area-specific disaster management plans in the state.
What do you say about disaster management in school and college curriculums?
Well, it has been introduced in the curriculum. But, I think the students should be taught all the survival strategies to handle emergencies in a practical manner. There should be mock drills in the schools.
There aren’t survival manuals like in the western countries?
You are right. We have only pamphlets and manuals for experts here, but no detailed survival manuals for the common man.
How can government improve disaster preparedness?
I think the government should come up with a certification system regarding implementation of disaster management.