Lalhuma calls for effective implementation of building by-laws and regulations

KOHIMA, NOV 23 (DIPR): State chief Secretary, Lalhuma has called for  proper implementation of building by-laws and regulations to mitigate loss of life and properties during natural disasters. He was inaugurating the one-day technical workshop on ‘Model Amendment in Town and Country Planning Act, zoning regulations, development control regulations and building By-laws’ at the Administrative Training Institute today. The seminar is being conducted by resource persons from ‘Building Materials and Technology Promotion Council (BMPTC)’, New Delhi.

Addressing the gathering of engineers and architects from several departments, Lalhuma stressed on the importance of such a workshop, adding that what is imbibed and disseminated is going to directly affect life and property, if a disaster strikes the state. He said that while there is no dearth of laws and regulations, codes and by-laws, these are rarely adhered to by the concerned people.

Lalhuma said that the whole process of planning and execution shall have to be changed for amendments if  by-laws etc., are to be effective. “Simplify plans and enforce them strictly”, he said, while stressing on the importance of awareness generation. He also noted that cost and safety factors play a crucial part as technology is often not within the means of everyone.

Lalhuma mooted the idea of formulating plans to include village areas adding that building technologies stresses mostly on urban areas. He said that appropriate technology has to be adopted for urban and rural areas. He appraised the gathering of a Geo-Technical Survey that was done for Kohima town where the town was categorized into five hazard zones. He said that such a survey, if done in all the district headquarters of Nagaland, would contribute towards mitigation of disasters.

Stating that the building sector is the biggest sector in Nagaland with two-thirds of the state budget going into it, Lahuma also urged stakeholders such as engineers and architects to incorporate what they learn from the seminar at the ground level.

Executive Director, BMPTC, RK Celly gave a brief introduction to the workshop. He said that natural disasters cause direct and indirect losses which can be considerably higher. He said that about 50 % of the world’s population are expected to be living in urban areas by 2010. He said that unplanned and uncontrolled growth in urban centres greatly increase the risk of disasters while adversely affecting quality of life. He informed that ‘Vulnerability Atlas of India’ is expected to be released very soon and would be available in a digitized format.

Chief (Building Materials), BMTPC, JK Prasad highlighted the importance of proper adherence to codal provisions. He said that engineering intervention is required and that development cannot be sustainable unless disaster mitigation is built into the development process.

Offering the vote of thanks, Principal Secretary (Home), Banuo Z Jamir also highlighted the need to make laws which are applicable and suitable to the state’s  situation. She expressed appreciation to Lahuma, as it was during his tenure as Development Commissioner that amendments in town and country planning were initiated besides constitution of Hazard Safety Cells. The programme was chaired by OSD, Justice and Law and Additional Director, FP Solo.