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India extends tsunami warning services to Sri Lanka, Seychelles

 India on Friday extended its tsunami early warning system services to Sri Lanka and the Seychelles.



New Delhi: India on Friday extended its tsunami early warning system services to Sri Lanka and the Seychelles.

The integrated ocean information services and tsunami warning services would be extended to the coastal nations, Union Minister for Earth Sciences Harsh Vardhan announced on the sidelines of Regional Integrated Multi-Hazard Early Warning System of Asia and Africa (RIMES) Ministerial Conference here today.

The warning system has been developed by Indian National Centre for Ocean Information Services (INCOIS), Hyderabad, in collaboration with RIMES. Such a service has already been operationalised for Maldives.

The issue of having such a system was raised in a meeting of RIMES, a Bangkok-based multi-governmental organisation, of which India is a member. It was suggested that India should build capabilities of issuing early warning in an event of tsunami which was agreed upon by India.

The conference also saw attendance from 23 nations which included Afghanistan, Armenia, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Comoros, Laos, Myanmar, Maldives, Mongolia, Mozambique, Nepal, Papua New Guinea, Pakistan, the Philippines, Seychelles, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Thailand, Timor-Leste, Uzbekistan and Vietnam.

The conference also adopted a Master Plan for 2016-2020 which includes a country specific capacity building priorities of member and collaborating countries for user-centred early warning for hazard.

The Master Plan 2016-2020 aims to integrate seamless forecast and early warning information into planning and decision-making for reducing risks from various hazards and maximising opportunities associated with climate.

"Major aspects revolved around the conference were the possible risks and hazards and ways to mitigate it. This time, we have added the monsoon and everything related to the list, like the forecast, early warning related to floods pertaining to member countries," said Shailesh Nayak, secretary, Ministry of Earth Sciences.

Speaking at the end of the conference, Vardhan said the declaration was just not a yearly event, but a global emerging movement for protection of the world from calamities, particularly tsunami.

"This movement is a stepping stone and the movement will become a precursor to all 192 countries of the world," Vardhan said.

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