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Shiva…….the deluge that
The Kedarnath temple -
a sacred destination
for Shiva followers - is
one of the most revered shrines
in India and is visited by
millions every year.
One of four highly
revered shrines in
Uttarkhand, the temple
is located at a height of
3,581 metres above sea
level in the Rudra
More than 13,000 people
were at Kedarnath during
the rain fury on June 14-16, 2013 and
the official death toll to date is 1,000
Increasing tourism for
recreational purpose and
are blamed for the
destruction caused in
chief purohit of
She has always been regarded as the guardian of all pilgrims who visit
the much revered Kedarnath shrine.
However, on the 16th of June at around 6 in the evening the
ancient idol was removed. Then, at 8 PM it happened. — The massive
destruction that swept the hills and valleys of Uttarakhand bringing
death in their wake.
DHARA DEVI IDOL REMOVAL
LED TO THE DELUGE?
rampant cutting of trees and forest
use of dynamites for road construction,
encroachments, & buildings, hotels,
guest houses and travel lodges on the
too many hydropower projects,
changing river courses,
poor structural safety -
this was a Himalayan disaster
waiting to happen.
Successive CAG reports have made scathing
remarks on the lack of disaster management
preparations in the state.
Devastating floods in Uttarakhand
were a disaster waiting to happen
is prone to
BORDER ROADS ORGANIZATION
ARMED FORCES OF INDIA
INDIAN AIR FORCE
The Indian Army and the Indian Air Force are neither
trained nor equipped for flood relief or disaster man-
agement. It is the leadership, discipline and cul-
ture developed within the forces that have
made them versatile. Their imaginative use of
their military equipment, skills and their administra-
tive abilities has stood them in good stead.
ARMED FORCES LEAD DISASTER
RESPONSE IN UTTARAKHAND…………..
Army and the Air Force mounted massive rescue and relief
operations in the flood and landslide affected areas of
Uttrakhand and Himachal Pradesh while the Border Roads
Organization deployed 3000 of its personnel and equipment,
working for various projects, to clear the roads and to rescue
the stranded people as per the Ministry of Defense release.
Operation “Surya Hope” was launched with the aim of
providing succor, hope & humanitarian assistance to the
people in affected regions of Badrinath, Hemkund and
……WHILE THE POLITICIANS TRADED
BLOWS OVER WHO TAKES CREDIT FOR
RELIEF EFFORTS, IN UTTER DISREGARD
FOR THE AFFECTED PERSONS.
ARMED FORCES PROVIDED WATER ,
FOOD & MEDICATIONS TO OVER 20,000
DISASTER AFFECTED PEOPLE AT
…...WHILE POLITICIANS PLAYED MEDIA EXPOSURE GAMES
WITH UTTER CALLOUSNESS— DELAYING LIFE-SUPPORT TO
THE AFFECTED PEOPLE FOR THREE DAYS ……..
A CENTRAL GOVERNMENT
A STATE IN DISTRESS......AND…..
If media reports are to be believed, no
requisition for aid to civil authorities
had been received by the Battalion
Commander at Harsil. All the rescue &
relief actions of the Armed Forces has
been on their own accord &
The Government has responded by appointing a
former bureaucrat as nodal officer for synergy. If
newspaper reports are to be believed, this nodal
officer convened a meeting of top officials on June
24, 2013 (Monday) to streamline rescue efforts.
Why should the meeting wait till Monday when he
was appointed on Friday June 21; a delay of 3
sorrow of the
alleviation, it is
The appointment of the
nodal officer bypassing
the NDMA raises a larger
question of the
of the established
institutions of the
Government to handle
Why did the Government not
consider it appropriate to task
the Indian Army to coordinate
the efforts to put to optimal use
the available resources and
instead decided to nominate a
bureaucrat as a nodal officer?
KEDARNATH SHRINE CIRCA 1882
Nationalist Citizens were
supporting the Armed Forces.
WHILE THE GOVERNMENT WAS CONFUSED
In flood-ravaged Uttarakhand, the Nationalists have
hit the ground running with 19 trucks of relief
material & brought help to thousands of flood-
affected people. Working with the Indian Army, they
contributed greatly to the rescue & relief initiatives.
All said than done, questions
related to the Uttarakhand
disaster still abound.
Uttarakhand is politically as fragile as its mountain ranges. With
six different individuals holding the chief minister position during
the last 13 years, has resulted in lack of continuity and failure in
getting a firm grip on the issues plaguing the state.
The political fragility has resulted in ad-hoc, unplanned develop-
ment. Successive governments have failed in creating any sort
of medium term or long-term plan or vision for the state. Most
decisions appear unconnected and lack coherence. They are
mostly random in nature & pander to the demand of the moment.
Climate change is impacting rainfall and cloud
bursts in the Himalayan region which have already
seen increase in temperature that are two to three
times higher than the average global temperature
rise of 0.9 degrees. Against this background, the
state has miserably failed to develop any systems
of early warning, forecasting and disseminating
rainfall and landslide related information.
The policy makers can move in either of the two directions:
either follow the path that they have taken earlier and re-
build Uttarakhand on the poor foundation of unscrupulous
and unplanned development.
Or take a radical, new path and come up with a innova-
tive and inclusive model of development built on the
foundation of modern disaster management techniques
and equal concern for the environment and livelihoods.
It is time the Government & its administration
becomes responsive, effectual and accountable.
It needs to respect and have faith in its own es-
tablished institutions. All this is possible only if
we shed this generalist bureaucracy and go in
for a professional administration.
THANK YOU !
WE SALUTE OUR
TROOPS AND SUPPORT
THEM TO HELL AND