The National Workshop
on Preparation of Heat Wave Action Plan began in Hyderabad today. The
two-day workshop is being organized by the National Disaster Management
Authority (NDMA) in collaboration with the Government of Telangana in a
bid to effectively tackle the onslaught of heat wave this year.
The workshop is aimed at sensitising States to the need of preparing and
implementing their Heat Wave Action Plans in line with NDMA’s
‘Guidelines for Preparation of Action Plan – Prevention and Management
of Heat-Wave’ formulated and circulated last year.
This timely workshop will help heat wave-prone States in drawing up
their plans for 2017 as heat wave onslaught in various parts of the
country typically starts by the latter half of March. Last year, the
effective implementation of Heat Action Plans by some of worst affected
States brought down the number of heat wave-induced deaths in the
country by about 50 per cent.
Speaking on the occasion, Shri R.K. Jain, Member, NDMA, said, “In 2015,
the number of deaths recorded due to heat wave was higher than deaths
caused by any other disaster. In this background, NDMA came up with a
set of guidelines for managing heat waves in 2016. We closely reviewed
and monitored the preparedness and actions taken by heat wave prone
States and with the combined efforts of all stakeholders, especially the
State Governments, were able to bring down the number of deaths
Dr. D.N. Sharma, Member, NDMA, said that with advance planning and
preparedness, and active participation of all stakeholders, not only
deaths but also illnesses induced by heat waves could be brought down.
Giving a presentation on prevention and management of heat waves, Dr. V.
Thiruppugazh, Joint Secretary, NDMA, emphasised on the importance of
Heat Action Plans and a robust database. He added that awareness
campaigns were needed to sensitise communities to take measures to
reduce the impact of heat waves.
Dr. K. Tirupataiah, ADG, Dr. MCR-HRD Institute, Hyderabad, spoke about
the importance of reviving indigenous traditions and knowledge to
mitigate the impact of heat waves. He also talked about the need to
involve children and Panchayati Raj Institutions in spreading the
message of awareness.
The first technical session on Heat Wave Action Plan and Risk Reduction
focused on the development of Heat Action Plans for prevention and
management of heat waves. It discussed the nuances of fine-tuning Action
Plans to cater to localized needs and solutions.
During the second session, Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Telangana, Odisha
and Maharashtra shared their experiences and best practices to help
other States prepare their Heat Wave Action Plans. These States, which
are among the most vulnerable, have been able to largely mitigate the
impact of heat waves with better preparedness and timely intervention.
The session on Early Warning and Forecasting of Heat Wave was chaired by
Dr. D.N. Sharma, Member, NDMA. It focused on the importance of
area-specific short-range forecasting along with extended forecasting to
help authorities to understand the immediate requirements of a region as
well the most suited mitigation measures for the entire heat wave