A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed to develop a Regional Level Early Warning System based on Rainfall Threshold for Sikkim region. The MoU was signed between Sikkim State Disaster Management Authority (SSDMA) and Geological Survey of India (GSI), yesterday at the chamber of Secretary cum Relief Commissioner, Land Revenue & Disaster Management Department, Government of Sikkim. The memorandum was signed by Sarala Rai, Secretary cum Relief Commissioner, Land Revenue & DM Department who signed on behalf of Sikkim State Disaster Management Authority and on behalf of Geological Survey of India, Dr. S. Raju, Director General, GSI.
Prior to the signing, Prabhakar Rai, Director, SSDMA briefed on the project proposal and gave an insight in SSDMA’s role in landslide management in Sikkim. He also informed the gathering of the long association of SSDMA with GSI in data sharing and landslide mapping in Sikkim.
Dr. S. Raju, DG, GSI informed, that the basic objective of the proposal was to share relevant and timely data on landslides to the department which in turn may help to save lives and properties in the state. He added that the landslide susceptibility maps at the scale of 1:50000 has been prepared for 17 states including Sikkim, about 3 lakh square KM of land has been mapped in the country, thereby creating database for about 60,000 landslides in the country. He further added that an MoU has been signed with Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) to get timely weather data that would be useful to create a robust system. He said that the same system was being used in Nilgiris, Darjeeling, and Kalimpong Hills which is giving 60%-70% correct forecasts as has been informed by the District Authorities. He concluded by adding that GSI services are primarily focused in the service of people and wanted State Government’s support to make the forecasting model a success. A short presentation on the project proposal was also shared by GSI. Sarala Rai, while thanking GSI for taking the initiative assured all assistance and support from the State Government to make the forecasting model a success.