Date 13/02/2020 Time : 1500 Hrs

2nd Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC), Disaster Management Exercise (BIMSTEC DMEx-2020) w.e.f. 11.2.2020 to 13.2.2020 concluded today at Puri, Odisha.

80 delegates from 05 member countries namely Bangladesh, India, Myanmar, Sri Lanka and Nepal and over 35 participants from various states of India participated in this first of its kind exercise organized by National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) as the nodal agency. The complete exercise comprised of a Table Top Exercise (TTX), Field Training Exercises (FTXs) on Flood and an After-Action Review (AAR).

On 11th February, 2020 Hon’ble Chief Minister of Odisha, Sh. Naveen Patnaik inaugurated the exercise at Bhubaneswar. The inaugural session was followed by a Table Top Exercise on the situation of earthquake scenario which further provided participants an opportunity to review and discuss disaster response plans and share best practices being followed in their respective countries.

On 12th February, 2020 Shri Nityanand Rai, Hon’ble Minister of State for Home Affairs, Government of India inaugurated Field Training Exercise on flood rescue management at the Ramachandi Beach, Puri (Odisha). Where a "simulated exercise village & Heritage Site (Konark Sun Temple)” were created using local available resources to depict flooded localities. The rescue teams of various member nations responded professionally as per the situation and demonstrated quick response using latest flood rescue equipment.

The exercise provided an opportunity to the participants to share the best practices being followed by them while responding to a situation in heritage sites which is affected by the disaster.

Today, during last day of the exercise “After Action Review (AAR)” was conducted under the chairmanship of Director General, NDRF, Sh. Satya Narayan Pradhan. Delegates from participating nations and observers from international agencies and the states shared their experiences and emphasized upon the need of cooperation amongst member nations for conservation of heritage sites.

Shri Satya Narayan Pradhan, Director General NDRF in his closing remarks expressed his gratitude towards all the delegates for their active participation during exercise. He further emphasized that this exercise would certainly go a long way in enhancing inter- country cooperation and collaboration for the conservation of heritage sites in the region especially during times of disaster.

The exercise was also attended by the observers from various international agencies like UNDP, INSARAG & ICCROM, national observers from INTACH & ASI and representatives from other stakeholders viz. IMD, NDMA, INCOIS, CWC, AQCS, Civil Defense, Fire Services & BIMSTEC Secretariat.

At the last all the delegates appreciated the efforts of Govt. of India and BIMSTEC Secretariat and emphasized upon the need for further mutual collaboration.

Issued by : PR Cell, NDRF HQ, New Delhi.