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ISLAMABAD: Climate Change Minister Sherry Rehman, in her additional official capacity as Chairperson of the Emergency Committee on Tropical Cyclone Biparjoy, has tasked the Sindh’s Provincial Disaster Management Authority (PDMA), and Space and Upper Atmosphere Research Commission (SUPARCO) with reporting the levels of inundation and assessing the recession of water in the affected areas by Monday (June 19) against the backdrop of the devastation caused by the cyclone in the coastal areas of the province.

She has instructed the Sindh government and PDMA to ensure the provision of essential supplies; food, clean drinking water, medical facilities and security to the displaced persons.

The minister has also instructed the Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD) to maintain “vigilant monitoring of the cyclonic activity.”

Additionally, she has tasked the National Highway Authority (NHA) to prepare a report on road damages in the impacted areas.

The Emergency Committee on Tropical Cyclone Biparjoy, that has now concluded its working, was formed by the prime minister— to respond to the challenges posed by the cyclone— under the leadership of the climate change minister. It comprised of the government officials concerned from the disaster management bodies and relevant departments.

“Cyclone Biparjoy highlighted the need for continuous efforts to enhance preparedness measures,” Rehman said in a statement issued Saturday.

She stressed on the importance of prioritising the development of robust early warning systems and utilising scientific knowledge to forecast and anticipate potential hazardous events, especially keeping in view the upcoming monsoon season.

The minister also drew attention to the fact that Pakistan experienced a rise in climate emergencies, “making it crucial to learn from these experiences and improve preparedness for future events. By doing so, the government can ensure better relief, rescue, and rehabilitation efforts for vulnerable communities.”

She emphasised on the significance of “using these lessons to strengthen the country’s ability to respond effectively to climate-related disasters and provide timely assistance to those in need.”

According to the statement, the Emergency Committee on Tropical Cyclone Biparjoy strongly urged the residents of the affected areas to “prioritise their safety and well-being.” They have been advised to seek assistance from the provincial and local administration concerned to ensure safe return to their homes.

The committee stressed on the importance of relying on official guidance and following the instructions of local authorities to mitigate risks and ensure the smooth transition back to their normal lives.

The committee reiterated to enhance “resilience and minimise the impact of future natural disasters during the monsoon season and beyond.”

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023

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