MARGAO: All the sarpanchas and panchas in South Goa district have been asked to remain alert to make necessary arrangements incase the people need to be evacuated.
In the backdrop of forecast that Cyclone Nilofar, which is likely to hit the west coast of the country, would bring in heavy rains to the state, Damodar Morajkar, additional collector, south, who is also holding the charge as Collector, on Monday, held an emergency meeting of the district disaster management committee so that it can gear up fully to face any eventuality.
“I have requested the deputy collectors in the South Goa district to keep in mind the past history of floods, and according focus on such areas. They are told to have separate meetings with the mamlatdars and talathis of their respective areas to keep contact with the local sources in the village as they play a pivotal role during the time of need. The locals know about the danger-prone zones of their areas,’’ Morajkar said after the meeting.
He has asked the deputy collectors to direct the various agencies to be alert in view of the warning of heavy rains by the IMD.
Asked about whether the necessary system is in place for tackling the likely threat from the heavy rains, he said that as per the district disaster management plan, equipment are arranged at the taluka level through local agencies.
He said that there were no reports from any control room about any untoward incident on the Sunday night.
While the Margao Municipal Council has been asked to provide labourers and vehicles, the Fire and Emergency Services has been asked to be ready with their available equipment.
The deputy director of panchayats was urged to alert all the sarpanchas and panchas in South Goa to make necessary arrangements incase people need to be evacuated.
Superintendent of police (SP) Shekhar Prabhudesai; Deputy Director of Panchayats, officials from the municipal councils, deputy collectors, personnel from Fire and Emergency Services and some other officials attended the meeting.
Meanwhile, the deputy collector Sangeeta Naik held meeting on Monday evening with the mamlatdars and talathis and asked them to be alert.
Naik also issued `most urgent’ circulars to the deputy director of panchayats on preparedness in view of Cyclon Nilofar centred over west central and adjoining south west Arabian sea asking the sarpanchas to hand over the panchayat halls to the concerned talathis and to keep panchayat offices open for 24 hours, with one staff member remaining present at the office.
Meanwhile, disappointed with some members of the disaster management committee — PWD, electricity, health and WRD officials, skipping the meeting of the committee held in view of the threat of heavy rainfall, Morajkar said that he would inform the government about their absence, for taking necessary action.
“I am disappointed by the absence of these officials. Their absence shows how serious they are towards their role in the committee. None of the officials from health department, electricity department, water resources department and PWD attended the meeting. I will be informing about it to the government,’’ he added.