Underground chambers on the cards

The Chandigarh administration is contemplating setting up underground safe chambers, from where officials will operate in the event of a nuclear, chemical or biological attack.

It may sound like some real-time war preparedness, even though chances of such attacks are apparently bleak at this juncture, but the authorities have already set the ball rolling.

The plan entails an underground hi-tech state-of-the-art command and control room, air sealed chambers for supporting staff and police and other facilities.

The underground structure will be insulated from possible damage by chemical, biological, radioactive and nuclear attack.  According to sources, an agency based in Gaziabad in Uttar Pradesh was asked to prepare a detailed project report in this regard. The agency has submitted the report which is being studied by officials, sources said. The preliminary plan suggests that the underground chambers can accommodate about 30 people, who can survive without external help for about a week.

Officials said the plan is at a nascent stage. Aspects of its feasibility, viability and technicality are being deliberated upon before a final call is taken, they said. The idea is to have unhindered command, control and monitoring of relief and rescue operations in the city in case of any such exigency. Officials of the Chandigarh administration and representatives of the central disaster management agencies held discussions on the issue in recently.

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