Nepal | May 27, 2020

Security bodies on high alert for disaster response

Lekhanath Pandey
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KATHMANDU, June 27: With increased risk of landslides and floods, all security agencies have been kept on high alert for emergency rescue and relief operations.

The government has taken the step after assessing that this monsoon would cause more natural disasters like landslides, river blockages, floods and inundation across the country than previous years because of huge ruptures of land surface caused by April 25 earthquake and aftershocks.

Laxmi Prasad Dhakal, Spokesperson for the Ministry of Home Affairs (MoHA), said all three security organs — Nepali Army, Nepal Police and Armed Police Force — have been kept on high alert so that they can be swiftly deployed for emergency humanitarian response. He added that the scale of possible catastrophe in this monsoon has already been evidenced by two pre-monsoon disasters — the blockage of Kaligandaki River by landslips in Myagdi and Taplejung, where almost five dozen people were either killed or went missing.

“The Central Natural Disaster Relief Committee, headed by home minister, has directed all District Natural Disaster Relief Committees to keep vigilance on entire security organs so as to swiftly act on any humanitarian emergency during this monsoon,” Dhakal told The Himalayan Times.

According to him, the government has already kept emergency relief goods like food supplies, tents and tarpaulins among others at different parts of every district.

MoHA has deposited necessary funds to the account of District Administration Offices to provide from Rs 5,000 to 40,000 to the possible victims of monsoon havoc. The money will be provided to the victims as per the criteria already fixed by the CNDRC. This amount is besides the money allotted for the recent quake victims.

The Nepali Army said most of its service personnel deployed for rescue and relief operations following the April 25 earthquake have so far returned to their barracks. It, however, added that the national force was on high alert for any possible humanitarian response during this monsoon.

“As always, the Nepali Army is on high alert to swiftly respond to any emergency situation that could be caused by the monsoon,” said NA Spokesperson Jagadish Chandra Pokhrel.

With the recent launch of two brand-new Mi-17 v-5 helicopters — brought from Russia — the Nepali Army said its air mobility capability has now been strengthen, which would be an added advantage for humanitarian response during natural calamities.

A version of this article appears in print on June 28, 2015 of The Himalayan Times.

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