Joint HADR Exercise commences at Naval Station Karwar in Karnataka

The Annual Joint Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief (HADR) Exercise, involving multiple agencies and being conducted by Indian Navy’s Western Naval Command, commenced at Naval Station Karwar in Karnataka yesterday morning.
Named as "Karavali Karunya", the exercise, which involves both both professional exchange and actual disaster response mechanisms, is set on a Tsunami disaster scenario and will continue till May 20, an official press release said.
In his keynote address, Rear Admiral K J Kumar, Flag Officer Commanding Karnataka Naval Area, welcomed the delegates from India and abroad and stressed on the requirements of coordination and synergy between civil-military agencies in the event of a disaster. 
Highlighting the requirements for preparations to tackle a tsunami disaster, he apprised the audience of the tsunamis in the Indian sub-continent with the last recorded on the west coast of India on 27 November 1945. He also highlighted the reduction in number of causalities during disasters post enactment of the Disaster Management Act 2005. 
Two first-hand accounts of actual Tsunami relief operations, in 2004, were presented by Rear Admiral Suraj Berry and Colonel Vikram Sharma, both from Integrated Headquarters, Ministry of Defence (Navy), bringing out the real scenario of 2004 tsunami-hit areas in Sri Lanka and Andaman and Nicobar Islands, respectively. 
Speaking on the occasion, Lieutenant General N C Marwah (Retd), from National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) apprised the delegates on the role of NDMA and developments in the field of disaster management. He stressed on the importance of general knowledge among the citizens on basic natural disasters and first aid. He also apprised the audience of available standard operating procedures (SOPs) already laid out for various contingencies. 
The proceedings of the day also included setting up of Internally Displaced People camp and static display. The camp at Rabindranath Tagore Beach will be open to public from 3:00 pm today, the release added.


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