Port Blair, July 8: The five-day National Workshop on ‘Analysis & Design of RC Buildings in Seismically Sensitive Zone-Present & Future’, jointly organized by the Deptt. of Civil Engineering, DBRIAT and Deptt. of Civil Engineering, NIT, Tirchy got underway with its inauguration in the conference hall of DBRAIT here today. The Chief Secretary, A&N Administration, Shri Chetan B. Sanghi was the chief guest on the occasion. Prof. Ravi Sinha, IIT Bombay, senior officers of the Administration, Chief Engineer, APWD, Shri Balaji, renowned experts from Bangalore, Chennai and Hyderabad, HoDs of various Engineering Departments/Organizations, students and faculties of DBRIAT were also present on the occasion.
In his inaugural address, the Chief Secretary stated that the Administration is conscious of the zoning of A&N Islands by the experts which lies on Seismic Zone V and is making concerted efforts in disaster management here in the Islands. He also mentioned about the seminar recently organized by the Coast Guard in which issues pertaining to disaster management, earthquakes, design & foundation for earthquake resistance buildings were discussed at length, and remarked that the Administration is making best efforts in addressing the same and is committed towards leveraging the best technology/information available in disaster management in the Isles.
The Chief Secretary further remarked that apart from the continuing medical education programme which the Health Department is undertaking vigorously, there is also the need in the Engineering field, to have a sustained and continuous up-dation of skill sets for engineers too. He also informed that cutting edge courses which are locally relevant to the Islands’ scenario shall be included in the University to be set up here in the Islands in the coming years. The Chief Secretary further informed that software oriented skills in the private sector are also being leveraged and over the next five years, the level of investment apart from the regularly budgetary expenditures, investments of about Rs 10-14 thousand crores is expected to be coming into the Islands and all these would go in civil construction; hence the need for the right kind of designs & foundations is of paramount importance.
Lauding the high-quality construction work exhibited by CPWD/APWD which was seen during the Tsunami, the Chief Secretary exhorted all the engineers to continue to give their best. Complimenting DBRAIT for organizing this workshop, the Chief Secretary remarked that the Engineers of Isles should also get the knowledge of best skills to give their very best designs while the safety paradigm of the people who stay and work/invest here should also be enhanced.
In his key note address, Prof. Sinha threw light on the impact of the 2004 tsunami here in the Islands and the need for finding ways in decreasing the impact of such natural disasters in future. He also highlighted about the natural disaster scenario worldwide and earthquake being one such natural disaster which causes most number of deaths.
Speaking about the global scenario, Prof. Sinha said, there has been a drastic change in the developed countries in dealing with natural disasters over the years and they have been able to make themselves eight times safer than what we are today. The impact on economy and system, level of enhancement of safety is more in the developed countries due to their sustained efforts, he said adding that countries like US, Japan, Italy and Turkey, which are highly prone to earthquakes have developed a strong vision with sustained efforts to reduce the number of deaths caused by earthquakes, right from the head of the state to the lower level. This, he said, has percolated down over the generations to further improve their knowledge and devise methods based on the acquired knowledge to make the structures safe. Similarly, here too, the Engineers need to find methods to implement those measures in making the structures safe and replace the old structures with stronger newer ones.
Prof. Sinha also exhorted all the Engineers to continuously update their knowledge and acquire new information in the field of civil structures and designs besides the need for hands on training on advancement of the codes.
Earlier, the Principal, DBRIAT Dr. Utpal Sharma welcomed the gathering, while the HoD (Civil Engineering Deptt.) Dr. Jenson Daniel proposed the vote of thanks.
The inaugural programme was followed by a technical session in which the resource persons viz. Vice Chancellor, Pondicherry University, Prof. Ravi Sinha from IIT Bombay and Shri Vivek Prasad Rajagopalan from CSI Engineering Software Pvt. Ltd, Bangalore delivered lectures on various aspects of earthquake engineering.