Udayavni Special

Always prepared for natural calamity: Udupi D.C.


Team Udayavani, May 31, 2018, 11:25 AM IST

Udupi: The torrential rain on Tuesday that submerged coastal Karnataka also severely affected Udupi district. Udupi district Commissioner Priyanka Mary Francis spoke with ‘Udayavani’ and provided information on the precautionary steps taken by the district administration.

According to the report, for how long will the cyclone effect remain? What steps have you taken in this regard?

On Tuesday morning 9:30am, the report came stating that heavy rains are expected for the next two days. As soon as we got the information we appointed nodal officer and took action. We declared holiday for the schools and directed the corporation, forest department and the fire department to remain alert. We had to give more importance to Udyavar and Kadekar. We also gave attention to inundated areas within corporation limits. The rain that fell up till now is due to the cyclone effect; henceforth, normal rain is expected.

D.K. district administration faced failure due to sudden rains. /If the same repeats here, how will you face it?

 It is impossible to say that the district administration failed. Any district administration can do nothing when there is a continuous rainfall of 250mm. What can be done if the limits extend over the drainage capacity? It becomes difficult when such an incident occurs suddenly. Yet, control was achieved by afternoon on Tuesday. When the rain is continuous, it is difficult to control. We have created a control room and appointed nodal officers and directed them to be alert all 24 hours.

Normally, huge buildings are constructed ignoring the laws and cause harm. What do you say on this?

Construction of buildings by not recognizing the path meant for water drainage will lead to the situation of floods. This should be observed during land conversion. We ask for an NOC from the district development authority before land conversion. They should recommend after seeing where the building can be built after leaving space for drainage. But to what extent this takes place is the question. Even in villages, while building houses on agricultural land, space has to be provided for drainage.

There is complaint that during emergencies, the officials of MESCOM and revenue department do not receive calls?

The calls have to be compulsorily received. I will direct the officers to do so.

More than crackdown, awareness in people is more important

Action should be taken against permits given for construction beyond the limits of the law. But more than this, it is important that the constructors and the people are aware about it. People should be self aware that their own construction will inflict harm on themselves; work should be carried on inculcating this.

District development authority must work within the ambit of the law. In case they work beyond the limits of the law and there is proper evidence to it, suitable action should be taken. Valid evidence and complaints are required. We give direction on not to do this. The illegal encroaching by the public is the reason the water does not flow down the drain. This was observed in Kaup on Wednesday.  By encroaching and laying a slab, garbage gets piles up due to the flow of water is blocked. People should understand this.

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