No announcement yet.


This is a sticky topic.
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts



    Thursday, November 02, 2006
    19:59 IST

    The Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh, chaired a meeting of senior officials of the Ministries of Health, Urban Development, Drinking Water Supply and Panchayati Raj to review the recent incidents of vector borne diseases including Dengue and Chikungunya.

    The meeting was attended by Union Minister for Health and Family Welfare, Dr. Anbumani Ramdoss, Minister of State Smt. Panabaka Lakshmi, Union Cabinet Secretary, Shri B.K.Chaturvedi and Principal Secretary to the Prime Minister, Shri T.K.A.Nair.

    The Prime Minister instructed the Ministry of Health to restructure the Integrated Disease Surveillance Programme (IDSP) and to transform it into an "Early Warning System" for the outbreak of epidemics.

    The programme should be made accountable for any failure in this regard.

    The Ministry of Health was also asked to issue regular health alerts and health bulletins to create public aware ness so as to enable preemptive action being taken both at the community level and the level of households.

    The Prime Minister also instructed that funds under the National Rural Employment Guarantee Programme and National Rural Health Mission should be utilized both for preemptive public health intervention at the community level and for undertaking sanitation and disease prevention programmes.

    The Prime Minister complimented the media for playing the role of an early warning system. However, he urged the media to play a positive role by creating public awareness and desist from creating panic in the community.

    In this context, the Prime Minister called for the national observance of one day as a National Cleanliness and Public Health Day in which community level action can be taken to prevent epidemics, and ensure proper sanitation and cleanliness in public places and within houses.

    * * *


  • #2

    Friday, Nov 03, 2006

    Manmohan Singh reviews dengue, chikungunya situation
    Special Correspondent

    NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has called for restructuring of the Integrated Disease Surveillance Programme (IDSP) to transform it into an early warning system for the outbreak of epidemics.

    Reviewing the recent outbreak of vector-borne diseases including dengue and chikungunya here on Thursday, Dr. Singh said the IDSP would be made accountable for any failures in this regard.

    He asked the Union Health and Family Welfare Ministry to issue regular health alerts and health bullets for public awareness so as to enable pre-emptive action being taken both at the community level and the level of the household.

    So far, 152 people have died and 9,161 have taken ill because of the dengue outbreak in the country. More than 55 people have died of dengue in the Capital alone and 2,778 afflicted from the disease.

    On the chikungunya front, 1,689 confirmed cases, including 34 from the Capital have been reported though there have been no deaths. The worst affected states were Maharashtra, Kerala and Karnataka.

    Dr. Singh instructed the Ministries concerned that funds under the National Rural Employment Guarantee scheme and the national Rural Health Mission should also be utilized for pre-emptive public health intervention at the community level and for undertaking sanitation and disease prevention programmes.

    The Prime Minister called for observance of one day in a year as national cleanliness and public health day in which community level action could be taken to prevent epidemics.

    Dr. Singh urged the media to play a positive role by creating awareness and desist from creating panic in the community.

    Of the 1,057 cases from outside Delhi, 327 cases are from Haryana, 570 cases from Uttar Pradesh, 22 cases from Rajasthan and 138 from others.

    The highest number of dengue cases have been reported from Rajasthan (1224) followed by Kerala (849), West Bengal (820), Punjab (809), Uttar Pradesh (604), Maharashtra (582), Gujarat (475), Haryana (395), Tamil Nadu (324) Andhra Pradesh (97) and Karnataka (92).


    • #3

      <table align="center" border="0" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" width="85%"><tbody><tr bgcolor="#eff0ef"><td colspan="2" align="right" valign="top">PM?S ADDRESS AT THE 2ND ASIAN MINISTERIAL CONFERENCE ON DISASTER RISK REDUCTION <hr> </td> </tr> <tr bgcolor="#eff0ef"> <td style="text-align: left;" height="30" valign="top" width="103">
      </td> <td style="text-align: right;" height="30" valign="top" width="347">12:24 IST </td> </tr> </tbody></table> The Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh today inaugurated the 2nd Asian Ministerial Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction here today. Following is the text of the Prime Minister?s speech:

      ?I am delighted to have this opportunity to be here at this very important conference, which is deliberating on a subject of immense relevance to the entire Asian region. I also hope that this conference will be yet another milestone in strengthening collaborative, cooperative relations among the nations of Asia.

      Disasters know no political boundaries and we are all equally vulnerable to them. I firmly believe that this is one area where nations can ? and indeed must ? cooperate to find collective, cooperative solutions to the challenges that face them. After all, it is in difficult times that we need the best of relations. As a wise old saying goes ? a friend in need, is a friend indeed.

      It is, therefore, heartening to note that in recent years, countries of Asia have come together to help one another during times of natural disasters. We have had joint efforts to provide rescue and relief to those in distress ? in the aftermath of the tsunami of 2004, after the recent earthquakes in our regions, including in Jammu & Kashmir. This conference is taking place at a time when we can all feel hopeful that we have the sagacity to cooperate during times of natural disasters.

      The Asian Ministerial Conference is a natural platform to discuss disaster risk reduction. What is done ? or not done ? in one country, can have repercussions in another. This conference, therefore, can be a common platform for us to learn to work together in the best interests of all our peoples.

      Earthquakes, cyclones, floods and tsunami have contributed to disasters across Asia in the recent past. In handling all these disasters, what is important is to have coherent national strategies and national capabilities to handle these disasters. This would be in the realm of both disaster prevention and disaster management. I believe that it is incumbent on each one of us to develop the necessary national capabilities. There can be no substitute for effective national efforts.

      At the same time, each of the past episodes has shown us that a national response alone is not adequate.
      While we have the necessary wherewithal in Asia to respond to disasters, we need more bilateral and regional cooperation to make effective use of our capabilities.

      Greater cooperation in relief and rehabilitation, cooperation in disaster preparedness and in setting up and maintaining early warning systems is a useful and a very good way of demonstrating good neighbourliness. The regional effort in creating a Tsunami Early Warning System is a good example of regional cooperation. I hope we can sustain this effort and replicate it in other areas of disaster management and mitigation.

      The focus of this conference need not be limited to natural disasters alone. Modern societies must also prepare to come together to deal with manmade disasters ? be they industrial disasters or disasters caused by terrorists? attacks. The threat of terrorism looms large in many parts of our region and could trigger disasters across borders. We must also learn to deal with new kinds of health disasters such as HIV, Avian Flu which have emerged as new challenges all over the world. They have enormous social and economic consequences. Here again, we need improved methodologies for risk reduction, insurance as well as for mitigation.

      And of course, the biggest disaster that we may yet prevent from happening is the catastrophic effect of global warming and climate change.
      Whereas we have only nature to blame for natural disasters, we cannot say the same for manmade disasters. Actions of one nation can affect many other nations. I hope our region shows the same wisdom and cooperative spirit in dealing with manmade disasters as it has shown in dealing with natural disasters.

      Our country has adopted a forward-looking approach to disaster management and mitigation. We have constituted a National Disaster Management Authority and State Level Disaster Management Authorities. The National Authority has come forward with a new approach to disaster management. The paradigm shift that they have advocated is based on moving away from a relief-centric, post event approach to a holistic, integrated and preventive approach. The focus will be on disaster prevention, preparedness and mitigation.

      Improved coordination between various agencies of the Government is a first step in the new approach.

      Greater awareness among civil society utter with regard to prevention, mitigation and preparedness, is the next important step.

      Lack of information, panic and uncoordinated responses can have a negative impact. Community-based approaches can, therefore, help deal with panic, rumour-mongering and provide immediate relief. In risk reduction, such an approach can have positive externalities.

      There is yet another popular saying that has relevance to risk reduction, namely - a stitch in time, saves nine! Disaster risk reduction, in particular, should be based on pro-active pre-emptive action.

      Typically, small investments in improving the safety of houses can go a long way in reducing the risk of damage to life and property arising from earthquakes. Studies carried out by our engineers show that we could have saved valuable lives and property if we had appropriate housing technologies in earthquake-prone areas. We are developing such technologies that are affordable and also are appropriate to the situation we face on the ground. Information sharing in such technologies will be a useful way of addressing the challenge of risk reduction and promote regional cooperation in this important area.

      A second type of intervention relates to insurance against risk. The penetration of insurance in many of the countries of Asia is still very limited. I, therefore, urge all those who manage our financial systems to be even more pro-active in insuring the risk-prone regions. Insurance against natural disasters is still very limited. Here again, we need an approach that can spread the costs and ensure the financial sustainability of risk insurance mechanism.

      Countries of our region should learn to work together on a wide variety of fronts. The people of Asia have interacted with each other for centuries and they must do so on this vital subject. I hope opportunities provided by this Conference will help forge a new unity among the peoples of Asia. I wish your conference all success in addressing the challenges that we face. I hope you will come forward with new approaches, enlightened approaches for addressing the enduring problems of our people with regard to the management of disasters, their prevention and their management if they are unavoidable. With these words, I have great pleasure in inaugurating this Conference.?