Union Cabinet has given approval for raising of four additional battalions of National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) to strengthen the India’s disaster response set up. These battalions will be placed in Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Delhi National Capital Region based on their disaster vulnerability profile.
The objective of raising four additional battalions is to reduce response time keeping in view vast geographic area of the country. These four battalions will initially be raised as two battalions in Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) and one battalion each in Assam Rifles (ARs) and Border Security Force (BSF). Later these four battalions will be converted into NDRF battalions.
National Disaster Response Force (NDRF)
NDRF is India’s elite disaster mitigation combat force established in 2006 under The Disaster Management Act, 2005. It is headquartered in New Delhi. It functions under Union Ministry of Home Affairs. It works under National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) which lays down policies, plans and guidelines for disaster management.
The mandated of specialized force is to undertake special disaster response, relief, rescue operations and combat roles independently in the case of an event of any disaster (natural or man-made), accident or emergency. It also assists local authorities in launching a quick rescue and response operation to save life and property. At present there are 12 battalions in NDRF which are deployed strategically across country to provide immediate response.