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Mumbai civic body to train Ganesh mandal volunteers to tackle disasters

The first session will be held on August 11 in Parel area of Mumbai

mumbai Updated: Aug 05, 2017 10:23 IST
Tanushree Venkatraman
Tanushree Venkatraman
Hindustan Times
Mumbai,Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation,disaster management
The BMC aims to train at least 300 volunteers before the festival(HT FILE)

Ten days after a Ghatkopar building collapsed, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) decided to hold disaster management training sessions for Ganesh mandals across the city.

The first session will be held on August 11 at the F/South ward of Parel for 100 volunteers (including those from famous Ganesh mandals like Lalbaugh cha Raja and Mumbai cha Raja, Ganesh galli). Senior civic officials said two more sessions will be held for mandals in the eastern and western regions of the city before the festival commences. The 10-day festival, that begins on August 25, attracts huge gatherings across the city making it essential for volunteers to know basic disaster-management techniques.

A civic official said the volunteers will undergo a comprehensive one-day training to handle mutiple emergencies from fire to floods and even bomb blasts.

The BMC aims to train at least 300 volunteers before the festival. The parent body of Ganesh mandals in the city, the Brihanmumbai Sarvajanik Ganeshotsav Samanvay Samiti had demanded that the volunteers be trained in disaster-management in a meeting held with Mumbai mayor Vishwanath Mahadeshwar last week.

“We think that mandals must be equipped to handle any sort of emergency instead of being heavily dependent on BMC or the Mumbai police. This sort of training will also help them throughout the year and not only during the festival,” said Naresh Dahibavkar, president of the Samanvay Samiti, while referring to the building collapse in Ghatkopar that killed 17 people on July 25.

The civic official from the disaster management department of BMC said, “Apart from prevention techniques, they will be trained to mobilise resources, trained for lifting and carrying techniques in case of an emergency and the dos and don’ts during a fire. Once few volunteers are trained, we will expect them to teach others in their team.”

First Published: Aug 05, 2017 10:22 IST