Established in 1927, the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) is the largest, oldest and the apex business organization in India. FICCI's history is closely interwoven with India's struggle for independence, its industrialization, and its emergence as one of the most rapidly growing global economies. FICCI has contributed to this historical process by encouraging debate, articulating the private sector's views and influencing policy.
A non-government, not-for-profit organization, FICCI is the voice of India's business and industry. FICCI draws its membership from the corporate sector, both private and public, including SMEs and MNCs; FICCI enjoys an indirect membership of over 2,50,000 companies from various regional chambers of commerce. FICCI provides a platform for sector specific consensus building, networking and as the first port of call for Indian industry and the international business community. FICCI as an apex industry association in the country and has chosen Disaster Management as a pronounced focus area not only for the attention of the industrial sector but also for Statutory Agencies, NGOs, District & State Authorities.
India has more than 1760 Major Accident Hazard (MAH) Units handling large number of chemicals as raw materials, in processes, products, wastes with flammable, explosives, corrosive, toxic & noxious properties. Any accident involving these may have an adverse impact on both business & environment. Large quantities of chemicals are also stored/ processed in industries that are located in densely populated areas. Inappropriate, haphazard construction and lack of awareness, preparedness on part of the community further enhances their vulnerability. Thus, it becomes imperative to strengthen prevention, preparedness and mitigation activities to minimize the incidences of chemical accidents/disasters in the country. It is also important to set up an effective mechanism to respond to such disasters, if at all occurred, in spite of implementation of safety measures identified in on-site/ off-site plans.
Industries have a large capacity and play a huge role in disaster management, especially to meet the challenges posed by increasing disasters in the country. It was in September 2004, when FICCI formed a strategic alliance with National Institute of Disaster Management and National Disaster Management Authority to build up capacity of the nation in Disaster Management. Since then FICCI had held conferences all over India spreading awareness and generating new planning & policies for the disaster risk reduction.
FICCI through its department of Technology Commercialization have marketed new instruments for the disaster management sector. Some of the technologies are BCMS: Business Continuity Management System, which is an algorithm and software to monitor, track and automate DR drills and failovers for heterogeneous environments. There are other Technologies like: Sanjeevani Disaster management package and this technology is an emergency equipment i.e. multipurpose floating stretcher and multipurpose rescue kit/first aid kit. Apart from these there are several other CBRN and CIDM technologies which do help to manage disasters effectively and efficiently. Industries now have started research and development on products which are for disasters and its management.
FICCI through its conferences and workshops have sensitized the people over a decade. FICCI had taken up initiatives for building homes for the disaster affected people, FICCI-CARE alliance formed for Gujarat Rehabilitation Project to provide immediately temporary shelter, water/sanitation/electricity, quake resistant housing, construction of permanent social infrastructure (schools, clinics, anganwadi, tube wells), help to small business establishments and craftsmen. FICCI do come out with an annual book on Chemical (Industrial) Disaster Management (CIDM), which is a compilation of speeches of presentations on disaster management.
FICCI had also arranged International conferences on Spatial Data Infrastructure and its role in Disaster Management. FICCI had also conducted several conferences for generating awareness in industries on Chemical (Industrial) Disaster Management at Goa, Mumbai, Vadodara, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Chennai, Ahmedabad, New Delhi, Bengaluru, Jaipur, Chandigarh etc. These conferences provides a platform for exchange of information and technical know-how to the Indian, chemical, petroleum, petroleum products, natural gas and exploration/production industry. Discussions focus on ways to reduce on-site accidents as well as to manage oil spills to minimize their effects on environment. FICCI has also started its new initiatives on Earthquake Risk Management and Chemical Biological Radiological and Nuclear Disaster Management (CBRN).
The foremost areas which are focused under Disaster Management are:
1) Organizing National & International conferences on Chemical (Industrial) Disaster Management (CIDM), Chemical Biological Radiological and Nuclear disaster management (CBRN), Earthquake Risk Management for Industries (ERMI) and other awareness programs.
2) Working jointly with National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA), Ministry of Home Affairs in publishing and circulating their comprehensive guidelines on Chemical Disaster Management (CDM), Medical Preparedness & Mass Casualty Management and also other guidelines on natural disasters which could trigger chemical disaster or vice versa.
3) Promoting & advocating Public Private Partnership (PPP) based models of Disaster Management especially during Off-site emergency management where PPP can play a very supportive role.