Non Resident Odias hail Odisha Government efforts in saving a million lives, plan industry roundtable to aid relief and reconstruction

Bhubaneswar: ‘Fani’, the Supercyclone which hit Odisha’s coastal belt on 03rd May, 2019 was the most severe one to appear in this part of the world since the Supercyclone in 1999. ‘Fani’ has affected many parts of the state including the state capital. It has caused major damages to the communication network, electricity , water supply , buildings , transportation network etc. Many of the affected areas are still disconnected with the rest of the world in terms of communication and transport. State capital Bhubaneswar and the major Hindu Pilgrimage Town of Puri have also been badly affected. Large parts of the affected areas remain without electricity.
Odias living in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) were very anxious about the condition of their near and dear ones in the state of Odisha and were monitoring the situation at regular intervals. They were relieved to find their loved ones secure but have expressed shock at the loss to property and infrastructure that has been widespread.
Expatriate group – Global Odias for Odisha’s Development (GOOD), based in Dubai has commended the State Government for its quick action. The fact that human casualties were limited to a very small number, despite Odisha facing one the strongest cyclones in decades is massive achievement. Odisha’s handling of the cyclone has emerged as a global example of how accurate and timely weather alerts, preparedness and well-coordinated efforts by the State Government and its agencies and informed public participation (aided by timely dissemination of information) can lead to dramatic reduction in casualties.
GOOD has urged the State govt and Central govt to utilize all their resources to restore normalcy in the state at the earliest. They have also requested them to take all steps to ensure prevention of communicable diseases, which normally occur after such calamities.
GOOD has also received various enquiries from foreign media outlets on the situation back home. Phones were buzzing on the 2nd of May with anxious calls from various media houses enquiring about the situation in Odisha.
It is heartening to note that the efforts of the Odisha Government in evacuating around a million people to safety have been recognized by the foreign media, very widely. Foreign media has been commenting on the admirable work by the State Administration and talking about the accurate tracking of the cyclone by the IMD (Indian Meteorological Department).
Leading English Newspapers in the Gulf Region – Gulf News and Khaleej Times have both written very positive articles on the speed and efficiency with which the State Administration moved a million people to safety. New York Times has also written about it. In an article titled ‘How Do You Save a Million People From a Cyclone? Ask a Poor State in India’, the reputed newspaper talks about how the State Government deployed everything it had (text messages, sirens, police officer etc), to warn people of the impending danger and asking them to move to the cyclone shelters.
The Geneva, Switzerland based UN office of Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR) has also praised the government’s effective evacuation efforts which has saved many lives. It also appreciated the accuracy of the IMD’s warnings.
To do its own bit, Global Odias for Odisha’s Development (GOOD) is planning a round-table summit of a few corporates based in the Middle East under the banner of ‘HOPE: Helping Odisha’s PEople’ to seek their help in efforts to rebuild Odisha. This will be an attempt to seek their participation directly or indirectly in the restoration/rebuilding efforts that are urgently required to help Odisha get back on her feet.

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