Red Cross Volunteers bringing under Group Insurance

Jammu, March 16 (Scoop News) – N. N. Vohra, Governor, and  Omar Abdullah, Chief Minister, today emphasized the need for providing training and adequate equipment to the Red Cross Volunteers, in coordination with the Disaster Management Authority, for building their capacity and expertise to effectively launch rescue and relief operations to help those in distress. They also stressed the usefulness of examining the possibility of bringing all Red Cross Volunteers, across the State, under a Group Insurance Scheme to cover the risks they have to face while undertaking rescue operations when reaching out to the victims of natural calamities and other disasters.

          The Governor and the Chief Minister were addressing the 167th Managing Committee Meeting of the Indian Red Cross Society, J&K State Branch, at Raj Bhavan here this evening.

          The Governor, chairing the meeting, called for maximizing the collection of funds to carry out the Red Cross activities and observed that, among various other initiatives, collection boxes should be placed at the Airports, Railway Stations, Bus Stands, Hospitals, Government offices and other public places to encourage and enable the public to make their contributions for giving a fillip to the activities of Red Cross. He added that we should avail every opportunity to raise the resources round the year for the benefit of the people. In this context, he said that effort must be made to organize Red Cross Melas and Raffle Draws in all the districts of the State to enhance the resource base so that the ambit of Red Cross activities is optimally spread to the far-flung areas.

          Referring to the Action Plan being formulated for undertaking various Red Cross activities in J&K in the next two years, the Governor said that more innovative ideas should be put in the framework of the Action Plan for the benefit of the needy.

          The Chief Minister said that Identity Cards need to be issued to all the Red Cross Volunteers to facilitate their functioning in the hour of need. He said that all out efforts must be made for enhancing the resource base of Red Cross so that it reaches out to the needy in the remote areas.   

          While discussing the modalities for construction of Red Cross Complex at Srinagar, the Chief Minister assured the provision of required support for the purpose.        

           Sham Lal Sharma, Minister for Health, gave details of the various schemes to help the poor patients suffering from serious ailments. He also dwelt on the to-date status of the implementation of Swasthya Bima Yojana in the State.

 Madhav Lal, Chief Secretary, laid stress on raising the resources to progressively enhance the activities of the Red Cross.

           Kuldeep Khoda, Director General of Police;  Iqbal Khanday, Principal Secretary, Finance;  B. R. Sharma, Principal Secretary, Home;  Suresh Kumar, Principal Secretary, Housing and Urban Development; Dr. Asgar Samoon, Divisional Commissioner, Kashmir;  Navin Kumar Choudhary, Principal Secretary to the Governor;  G. A. Pir, Commissioner/Secretary, Health; Sheikh Mushtaq Ahmad, Secretary, General Administration Department; Deputy Commissioners and Additional Deputy Commissioners of various districts of the State, senior officers of the Army, CRPF and BSF,  Feroze Ahmad, Honorary General Secretary, IRCS, J&K State Branch, other functionaries of the Red Cross and members of the Managing Committee participated in the meeting.

Earlier,  Feroze Ahmad, Honorary General Secretary, IRCS, J&K State Branch, in his welcome address, highlighted the activities of the organization and its future Plan of Action.

The meeting undertook Division and District wise review of the activities of Red Cross. It also reviewed in detail the action taken on the decisions of the last meeting of the Managing Committee and took appropriate decisions on various agenda items for promoting the activities of the Red Cross in the State.