6 years on, doppler radars still not in place

More than five years after Centre sanctioned four Doppler radar stations for the State, not a single one has come up.

The Ministry of Science and Technology sanctioned the four stations, including one at Paradip, in 2006. The other three are to be set up at Balasore, Gopalpur and Sambalpur.

 A review on the progress made by Chief Secretary Bijay Patnaik on Monday revealed that the civil structure for Paradip station has been completed. Construction works of the other three are yet to start.

The Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) has been requested to install the Paradip station before monsoon. Sites have been identified and required lands handed over to IMD for other three stations. The meeting was also informed that soil testing and architectural plans have also been completed.

The Government has provided ` 17 crore under State Plan to Orissa State Disaster Mitigation Authority (OSDMA) for construction of buildings on which the Doppler radars will be installed. The Roads and Buildings wing of the Works Department will do the construction work and it has been targeted to complete the civil construction works for remaining three stations by 2013-end.

Doppler radar, best known for its near- accuracy weather forecasting, will be of use to the natural calamity-prone Odisha coast which frequently bears the burnt of storms, cyclones and cloudbursts. The radar will make accurate forecasts about the changing weather patterns, IMD sources said.

The meeting also decided to install calamity warning sound systems in the cyclone shelters in the State. At present, 200 cyclone shelters have been completed and more than 114 are at different stages of construction. A proposal has been sent to the Centre for installation of cyclone warning sound system in all the shelters.?? The Chief Secretary directed the Works Department to expedite the work. Special Relief Commissioner PK Mohapatra, Works Secretary SK Ray and Principal Secretary, Rural Development, SN Tripathy were present. 

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