GUWAHATI, July 29 - The Salonibari-based Centralised Training Centre of the Sashastra Seema Bal will be upgraded to a national-level institute, which will impart specialised training on disaster management, Union Minister of State for Home Kiren Rijiju said today.
Speaking to journalists after launching the newly raised rescue-and-relief team of SSB, Rijiju said the Central Government has received a proposal from the SSB for developing its training institute at Salonibari into a national-level disaster management training school.
“We are considering the proposal. This specialised school will impart training not only to personnel of the forces, but also to students and youth through various courses,” the Union Minister said.
SSB Director General Archana Ramasundaram said each of the 18 sectors of the SSB will have a specialised relief-and-rescue team comprising 35 personnel, including five women. There will be four such teams in the North East.
“We did not recruit any additional personnel for the teams. These personnel were already with SSB. The teams will help improve the capacity of the force in conducting rescue operations and providing relief during natural disasters,” she said.
Earlier, the SSB had just three disaster management teams. The new teams, raised within a short span of three months, have been equipped with modern safety and communication devices.
Rijiju said the SSB rescue-and-relief teams should hold joint drills with similar teams of other forces to develop synergy.
“Normally during disasters, rescue-and-relief is done jointly with other forces and the administration. That is why synergy is important. Floods are a regular phenomenon in Assam and so the rescue-and-relief teams have great relevance here,” Rijiju said.
Priority, he said, should be to save lives. “It is not easy to take relief material to the affected areas fast. The response time is very important. You just get one or two minutes to save a life,” he said.
The Union Minister also said awareness should be created among the people as the Central and State forces cannot be with the people round-the-clock. “The rescue-and-relief teams should also hold camps and train people on how to save oneself during disasters,” he said.
The SSB’s newly raised rescue and relief teams gave a demonstration at Dighalipukhuri.