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Odisha records 20% death due to lightning strikes in country

Bhubaneswar, Aug 8, 2017: Odisha constitutes 20 per cent of the total death caused due to lightning strikes in the country. About 2,000 people lose their lives every year in India due to lightning while as many as 258 persons have already died due to the lightning strikes in last five months. 

This was revealed at a meeting chaired by Revenue and Disaster Management Minister Maheswar Mohanty to discuss about enhancing awareness on lightning safety in the State to save the lives of human and animals from this killer disaster.

Alarmed over this statistics, the State Government on Tuesday decided to set up an expert committee to ascertain the reason behind lightning incidents and subsequent rise in casualties.

“About 2,000 people lose their lives every year in India due to lightning. Such death in Odisha is around 400 every year which constitute 20% of the total death in the country,” said Special Relief Commissioner (SRC) Bishnupada Sethi, who attended the meeting.

The meeting focused on massive awareness among the people about the lightning safety tips to reduce this rate of casualty.

Director, IMD, Bhubaneswar Sarat Chandra Sahu through a power point presentation explained about the causes of the thunderstorm and safety tips for lightning hazard.

The SRC indicated about the death toll in the state during last five years and initiatives taken to reduce the lightning death through public awareness.

Development Commissioner and Additional Chief Secretary R Balkrishnan advised the concerned officials to make an analysis of lightning deaths occurring in our State to identify the areas and class of people highly vulnerable to thunderstorm/ lightning.

The departments of Agriculture and FE, Panchayati Raj and Drinking Water, Forest and Environment, School and Mass Education, Higher Education, Labour and ESI, Energy, W&CD and Mission Shakti, H&UD were asked to undertake awareness campaign on lightning safety through their field functionaries.

Awareness posters and other IEC materials shall be developed by OSDMA with the help of the concerned depts. for targeted population concerning such Departments.

It was decided to ensure massive awareness campaign on lightning safety shall be taken up through electronic and print media.

Among others, Chandra Sekhar Kumar, Principal Secretary, Revenue and DM Department, and senior officers of line departments were present in the meeting.

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