Odisha’s ‘Tsunami-Ready’ villages get UNESCO-IOC recognition, Orissa


Odisha’s 'Tsunami-Ready' villages get UNESCO-IOC recognition

India has become the first country in the Indian Ocean region to become home to Tsunami-Ready villages in Odisha. The two villages, Noliasahi in Jagatsingpur district and Venkatraipur in Ganjam district have received the UNESCO-Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC)’s Certificate of Recognition and Certificate of Appreciation. This is the first time that Indian villages have got such recognition by UNESCO.

The awards were handed in a virtual event held by the Indian National Centre for Oceanic Information Services (INCOIS) and the Indian Ocean Tsunami Information Center (IOTIC).

The prime objective of this programme is to prepare the coastal community for such uncalled natural calamities and to minimise the loss of life and property.

Tsunami-ready means that these two villages are prepared to face such a calamity. While India has become the first country in the Indian Ocean region to receive such an honour, Odisha has become the first state in the country to have such villages.

The devastating tsunami of 2004

It’s been more than 15 years since the devastating tsunami took place in the year 2004. On the fateful day of December 26, the Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami hit the Sumatra–Andaman region early in the morning. The underneath of the sea was shaken and resulted in a massive 9.1–9.3 magnitude earthquake.

The incident shook the world and killed over 10000 people in southern India alone. Communities along the coasts of the Indian Ocean were hit hard. The tsunami claimed nearly 227,898 lives in 14 countries, including India, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, and Thailand. Tamil Nadu in India, Khao Lak in Thailand and Banda Aceh reported the maximum number of fatalities.

With such high numbers, the tsunami of 2004 became the deadliest natural disasters in recorded history.

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