Set up National Disaster Intelligence Network: Parliamentary panel

Set up National Disaster Intelligence Network: Parliamentary panel

"The Committee had urged the Ministry of Home Affairs to consider establishing a National Disaster Intelligence Network, where knowledge and experience gained from previous disaster were carefully analysed and utilised in the event of any disaster occurring in future," Public Accounts Committee said in its latest report presented in Parliament.
It said the Union Home Ministry should conduct a detailed review of all relief programmes post-Tsunami in order to ensure that the rehabilitation funds sanctioned to the affected states or Union Territories actually reached the targeted beneficiaries.
The Committee found certain systematic inadequacies at the field level which resulted in various irregularities in the identification of beneficiaries in the affected states and Union Territories.

It has desired that the MHA, in consultation with states and UTs, should formulate specific guidelines and methodology to ensure foolproof identification of the beneficiaries of the relief and rehabilitation measures in the aftermath of the natural calamities.

Taking note of the fact that speedy procurement of the relief materials was crucial for quick administrative response towards tackling the human sufferings post natural disasters, the Committee asked the MHA to take up the matter with the states and UTs to put in place a practical and effective arrangement to address this.

The Committee has recommended the Ministry to prepare a revised CRZ Notification, after finding several shortcomings in the proper implementation of the Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) Notification issued in 1991 by the Ministry of Environment and Forests for the purpose of protecting and conserving the coastal environment.
The revised Notification should incorporate it in all issues concerning climate change and consequential rising sea levels and factors in natural calamities like cyclone and tsunami, the Committee said.

Panel pulls up Renewable Energy Ministry for 'poor show'
 Observing that the country needed to focus more on clean energy sources to fight climate change, a Parliamentary Committee today pulled up the New and Renewable Energy Ministry for low utilisation of funds and not meeting its targets.
"During 2009-10, against the target of 3,224 MW grid power, only 429 MW has been achieved till July 31 this year, which is barely 13.3 per cent of the target.
"The situation in the off-grid section is more gloomy as only 6.56 MWeq has been achieved in the same period against the annual target of 95.80 MWeq, which forms 6.84 per cent of the target," the report said.
The Standing Committee on Energy headed by Mulayam Singh Yadav recommended the Ministry to launch a special campaign for promoting grid-interactive and off-grid progammes.
The Committee also observed that the Ministry was not meeting its expenditure targets under its 11th Plan period.
"Against the total budgetary outlay of Rs 4,000 crore for the 11th Plan period, only Rs 1,062 crore (26 per cent) had been expended in the first half of the Plan... Ministry was expected to spend at least 40 per cent of the budgetary provision for implementation of projects," the report said.

The Committee asked the Ministry to focus on areas affecting the implementation of the projects.
Citing low performance of state agencies in implementing projects as a reason for the less use of funds, the Committee asked the Ministry to take prompt initiative and proactive approach while coordinating with the states.
The Parliamentary report also noted that the Ministry has achieved only 222 MW till July 31 under wind energy programme against the target of 2,500 MW .
"Wind-mapping of the whole country has still not been done... the Ministry should focus on Research, Design and Development (RD and D) of wind energy with full momentum to prepare a solid base for optimum exploitation of wind energy potential in the country," the report said.