Bhubaneswar: With the weather department predicting surplus rainfall this year, Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Wednesday asked the administration to be fully prepared to tackle floods.
"The IMD has predicted surplus rainfall. Therefore, probability of flood this year appears to be very high. Keeping this in view, we have to remain in full preparedness to encounter flood situation," he told a state-level natural calamity meeting.
"It is the government's responsibility to reach out to the affected people and provide due assistance at the earliest in the event of flood", the Chief Minister said.
Pointing out that all the past breaches in embankments have been plugged, he said, "Water Resources department would ensure that adequate flood fighting materials are stored near weak and vulnerable points on river embankments and watch and ward arrangements made during flood."
"There are ten functional Odisha Disaster Rapid Action Force (ODRAF) units and the government has created ten more units which would be in place very soon", Patnaik said.
"Similarly, there are 293 fire stations at present and 42 more would be set up very soon", the chief minister said.
"These units must be in readiness for deployment to undertake rescue and relief operation as first responder in the event of flood," Patnaik said.