Free Press Journal

Himachal to install modern warning systems near Beas


Shimla: To prevent disasters in the Beas river, Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh here Friday stressed the need for installing modern warning systems.

Presiding over the state disaster management authority meeting, the chief minister favoured adopting GPRS technique so that in case of any mishap or disaster the people in that area could receive an SMS instantly.

He said: “The state would set up its own state disaster response force, comprising of trained and motivated team of young recruits.

To begin with, three companies of Third Police Battalion posted at Pandoh in Mandi district would be given training in disaster management.”

The chief minister said the equipment required to be used during disasters would be positioned up to tehsil level.

Raising concern over the Thalot incident in which the 24 students and one tour operator were washed away last month in the river with the release of water from a nearby hydro-power project without warning, the chief minister said bilingual hoardings with warnings would be installed at vulnerable points.

“All Himalayan rivers are perennial and the flow of water increases with the melting of snow in summer, particularly in the evening, and it should be ensured that warnings boards and hoardings be erected along the river beds and such areas be fenced,” he said.

Health and Revenue Minister Kaul Singh said Kinnaur and Sirmaur districts are the most disaster prone areas in the state.

Rajinder Rana, vice-chairman of the Himachal Pradesh State Disaster Management Authority, stressed for using latest techniques and warning systems in post and pre-disaster situations and to create more awareness till school level.