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Meghalaya prepares to tackle earthquake devastation

SHILLONG: As seismologists and scientists are unanimous of big earthquake of 8.5 on the Richter scale hitting the Himalayan region, the Meghalaya Revenue and Disaster Management minister, Kyrmen Shylla on Thursday said the State Disaster Rescue Force (SDRF) and National Disaster Rescue Force (NDRF) are on alert in the state.
As per reports, seismologists and scientists are unanimous that a big earthquake along the 600-km stretch of the central parts of the Himalayan region is imminent and they are also sure of its large scale devastation but do not know when.
Shylla, while acknowledging the vulnerability factor of the region as it falls under seismic zone 5, said he has called a meeting of all the heads of the disaster management team to discuss the future course of action.
He also said that the department is in need of modern machineries and equipment for handling emergency situations, adding that the department will have to submit a proposal for getting modern equipment which will be helpful during any disaster.
The Minister also informed that the department would discuss about having emergency safety plans and safety audit of the government buildings and other high rise buildings in the state and in the city.
The scientists feared a great earthquake along the 600-km stretch of the central parts of the Himalayan region for some time.
They know that it is in the offing, but cannot say when it will happen, but are worried about the devastation it can cause on human lives and material wealth across this part of the globe.
On the cyclonic storm that hit parts of the state, Shylla informed that the respective Deputy Commissioners have been directed to provide the relief materials and even compensation to the affected.
He said that the rescue agencies are continuously monitoring the situation.
As many as 49,524 people were affected due to the damage caused by the cyclonic storm and rain since April 14 in the state. The number of affected villages is 410 and 2037 houses were damaged.

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