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Mega earthquake of 8 magnitude in Himachal to put Govt’s preparedness to test

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Earthquake in Himachal Pradesh in 2018

Shimla: An earthquake measuring 8 in magnitude on Richter Scale will occur at midnight on intervening nights of February 7 and 8, 2017 in Himachal Pradesh. The epicentre will be between Sundernagar and Mandi. The neighbouring States like Punjab will be worst hit after Himachal.  

 This is what the disaster management agencies will presume before conducting the fourth Mega Mock Earthquake exercise on February 8, 2018, in which all the 12 districts will participate, informed the Principal Secretary, Revenue and Disaster Management, Onkar Chand Sharma during the Orientation and Coordination Conference and Sensitization programme on Incident Response System (IRS)

 As reiterated several times, an organization of mock drills are required because Himachal is highly vulnerable to the earthquake as it comes under highly sensitive seismic zones IV and V.

Predicted Mega Himalayan Quake

During past decades, several national and international research institutes, geologists, and seismologists had been repeatedly warning about massive tectonic movement in seismically active 600 km long Himalayan belt. Entire Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand will be worst hit as they fall in seismic zone IV and VI. No expert is able to predict any date, but they have shown confirmation in their predictions based on various historical and contemporary data.

earquake-prone-regions-of-himachal-pradesh

 Mock exercises are conducted to help enhance strategies, level of preparedness and risk resilience of both the response teams as well as the general public. 

Objectives of the Mega Mock Drill

The objectives of these mock drills remain on generating awareness amongst all stakeholders, evaluate response mechanism and to find out strength and gaps in preparedness and mitigation. Other than that, the capacity building of local people and effective coordination between various agencies is also a major objective of the mock drill.

 Earlier such mock exercise was done in November 2016 in which seven most vulnerable districts i.e. Shimla, Kangra, Mandi, Chamba, Solan, Kinnaur and Kullu participated but this time all districts would be covered.

 Each district will conduct an exercise at minimum five places.

As effective areas for carrying out rescue, relief and mitigation work in each district various places such as residential, non-residential, hospitals, educational institutes and shopping complexes will be taken, informed the Special Secretary, Revenue and Disaster Management, D.C. Rana.

 Experts from National Disaster Management Authority will observe the entire exercise. 

Table Top Exercise will take place on February 07, 2018 at 11 AM onwards, and Deputy Commissioners of all districts will attend the exercise through Video Conference.

The State level Officers will be present at State Secretariat.

Earthquake scenario will be laid down in accordance with the studies of  IIT Mumbai, IIT Madras and NDMA.

 There is a visible need of involvement of the community as local people are the first responders in such circumstances as it takes time to the district and State authorities including National level teams to reach the incident place.

predicted-mega-quake-in-asia

 The government has suggested that the Disaster Management training will be incorporated into every training schedule of HIPA and other departmental training.

State Disaster Response Force and NDMA will provide all necessary assistance and specialized training for it.  Himachal is a Hilly State and landslides are frequent and NDMA has assigned IIT Mandi to undertake a pilot project for it, it was informed in the meeting.

 Senior Specialist NDMA, Major Gen  (Retd), Dr. V.K. Naik, gave a detail presentation on  Sensitization Programme on Incident Response System (IRS).

 If the Member NDMA, Lt Gen (Retd),  N.C. Marwah to be believed, Himachal has done remarkable work in the field of Disaster Management and is listed one of the best State in the Country in preparedness. 

The government claimed that the state has incorporated IRS in State Disaster Management Plan, which is very comprehensive and allied to National Disaster Management Plan.

 Senior officers of Army, NDRF, ITBP, SSB, Police, Deputy Commissioners, and Head of line departments were present in the meeting.

 

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HP By-Polls 2021: Silence Period Extended to Three Days

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hp by polls 2021 silence period

Shimla-The campaigning period during Himachal Pradesh by-elections has been fixed from 10 am to 7 pm every day. The silence period has been extended from two days to three days before the closing date of voting, which will start after 6 pm on 27th October 2021.

During the no active campaigning by the candidates or political parties is allowed, and television or any digital media cannot carry any election-related matter.

This information was released by Chief Electoral Officer, Himachal Pradesh, C. Paulrasu. He said that the Election Commission of India has limited the period of campaigning during by-election 2021 in view of the guidelines issued for the prevention of the COVID-19 pandemic.

He has urged all the candidates and political parties participating in the by-elections of Mandi Parliamentary Constituency and Fatehpur, Jubbal-Kotkhai and Arki Assembly Constituencies to comply with these guidelines related to the election campaign.

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Campus Watch

Nauni Varsity Scholar Naincy Bags Scholarship to Pursue PhD in France

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Naincy Sagar uhf nauni scholar

Solan: Naincy Sagar, an alumna of Dr. YS Parmar University of Horticulture and Forestry, Nauni has bagged a fellowship for pursuing PhD from France. Nancy has reached France and will be pursuing PhD in Forest Genetics from the University of Orléans under INRAE fellowship. INRAE is France’s National Research Institute for Agriculture, Food and Environment.

Naincy has completed her BSc Forestry from College of Horticulture and Forestry (COH&F), Neri in 2018 and MSc Forest Biology and Tree Improvement and Genetic Resources from UAS, Dharwad, under ICAR’s National Talent Scheme. Before leaving for France last week, Naincy was working as a Junior Research Fellow in a research project at COH&F, Neri.

She had applied for a PhD with a scholarship in Forest Genetics which was advertised by INRAE. Naincy was successful in the interview and was awarded a fellowship for three years for pursuing PhD at the University of Orléans. During the course of the PhD, she will receive a total scholarship of around Rs 70 lakh along with medical reimbursement. Naincy will be working on forest tree larch species in the Project titled ‘Vigour at what cost? ‘Trade-off’ of hybrid vigour in Larch-Phenological, morphological and physiological determinants of hybrid superiority in Larix X eurolepis’ with a team of 20 scientists of Joint Integrated Biology Research Unit having expertise in genetics, genomics and physiology for the enhancement of tree and forest diversity

Dr. Parvinder Kaushal, Vice-Chancellor of the university spoke to Naincy via web conferencing and congratulated her. Dr. Kaushal, who has also done his doctorate from France, shared some tips and suggestions. He asked Naincy to explore this opportunity to learn about new cultures along with doing research that could help to enhance and conserve forest wealth in the future.

Naincy expressed gratitude towards her father Satya Prakash Sagar (Retd. SDO BSNL) and mother Monika Sagar, who is working as SDO in BSNL for their continuous support for higher studies. She also thanked Vice-Chancellor Dr. Parvinder Kaushal, Dean Dr. Kamal Sharma and Dr. Dushyant Sharma, Project Investigator and all the university staff for their support and guidance. The university administration, Dean of COH&F Neri congratulated Naincy and wished her success.  

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Bad Weather Warning for Himachal, Tourists and Locals Advised Not to Venture into Higher Hills

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weather alert in himachal pradesh

Shimla– The Himachal Pradesh Meteorological Department, Shimla, has predicted heavy to very heavy rains for middle and lower hills on October 17th and 18th. The Met has also issued orange and yellow alerts for various districts.

Meanwhile, heavy snowfall has been predicted in higher hills and advisory has been issued for both locals and tourists to avoid travelling to higher hills.

While a yellow alert with a prediction of thunderstorms and lightning at isolated places has been issued for Una and Hamirpur district on October 17, an orange alert with a prediction of heavy rainfall, thunderstorm, lightning and hailstorm at isolated places has been issued for Bilaspur, Chamba, Kangra, Kullu, Mandi, Shimla, Solan, Sirmaur, and Kinnaur.

For October 18, a yellow alert has been issued for Una, Bilaspur, Hamirpur, Chamba, and Kullu districts and an orange alert for the remaining districts.

The Deputy Commissioner, Lahaul-Spiti, warned that in view of the Met Department’s forecast for the next two days, locals and tourists should avoid Manali-Leh National Highway (NH-03) and refrain from venturing into higher hills.

In case, travel is unavoidable due to some compelling circumstances, such candidates have been asked to confirm weather and road conditions on given telephone numbers, which are 9459661355, 01900-202509, 510, 517 and 1077.

The DC also informed that in case of any emergency, people should contact the District Disaster Management Cell, Lahaul-Spiti, on 01900 202509, 510, 517, and Tall Free -1077.

The weather is predicted to be dry on October 19 and 20. 

Feature Photo: Photo by Rodrigo Souza from Pexels

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