Nearly 6,800 people lost their lives in the country over the past three years due to hydro-meteorological calamities.
GS-III: Disaster Management
Dimensions of the Article:
- Hydro-meteorological calamities in India
- Government’s efforts towards flood management
- Mitigation for Land Slides
Hydro-meteorological calamities in India
- Hydro-meteorological calamities and hazards include flash floods, cloudbursts and landslips triggered by extreme rainfall events or cloudbursts.
- Hydro-meteorological calamities accounted for 14% of the deaths in the country.
- Various types of fatal landslip events are common almost every year, mainly in the Himalayan States, in the Western Ghats, and Konkan areas.
- West Bengal has recorded the highest deaths due to such calamities among all States, followed by Madhya Pradesh and Kerala.
- In Madhya Pradesh and Kerala, the spike in the casualties has been caused by floods.
Peculiar Case of West Bengal
- In West Bengal, for three consecutive years, the deaths due to natural calamities are high. The reason could be the geography of the State where there are both mountains and coastline.
- West Bengal is susceptible to both landslides, cyclones and floods. Over the past three years, West Bengal had braved four tropical cyclones — Fani (May 2019), Bulbul (November 2019), Amphan (May 2020) and Yaas (May 2021).
Government’s efforts towards flood management
- Rashtriya Barh Ayog (RBA) was constituted in 1976. It submitted its report in 1980 recommending various measures of flood control.
- National Water Policy-2012: It emphasizes construction of large storage reservoirs and other non-structural measures for integrated flood management.
- Setting up Ganga Flood Control Commission (GFCC) at Patna in 1972 and Brahmaputra Board in 1980 for advising the Ganga Basin States and North EasternStates respectively on Flood Management measures.
- The Central Water Commission (CWC) was set up in 1945: It performs flood forecasting activities on major rivers and their tributaries in the country and issues flood forecast at 175 stations.
Mitigation for Land Slides
- Restriction on the construction and other developmental activities such as roads and dams in the areas prone to landslides.
- Limiting agriculture to valleys and areas with moderate slopes.
- Control on the development of large settlements in the high vulnerability zones.
- Promoting large-scale afforestation programmes and construction of bunds to reduce the flow of water.
- Terrace farming should be encouraged in the northeastern hill states where Jhumming (Slash and Burn/Shifting Cultivation) is still prevalent.
-Source: The Hindu