In response to December 26, 2004 tsunami, government of India has established Indian
Tsunami Early Warning Centre (ITEWC) at Indian National Centre for Ocean Information
Services (INCOIS), Hyderabad under the Ministry of Earth Sciences and is operational since
October, 2007. Indian Tsunami Early Warning System comprises a real-time seismic monitoring
and sea-level (Tsunami buoys and Tide gauges) network. In addition, INCOIS also takes the help
of numerical model to assess the tsunami potential at different locations on the coast. The
system is operational round the clock on all days. The ITEWC is capable of detecting
tsunamigenic earthquakes occurring in the Indian Ocean as well as in the Global Oceans within
10 minutes of the occurrence of the earthquake and disseminates the advisories to the
concerned authorities through email, fax, SMS, GTS and website. The ITEWC is providing
advisories to all Indian Ocean rim countries as part of UNESCO-IOC framework.
Tsunami cannot be prevented, but its impact can be mitigated through community and
emergency preparedness, timely warnings, effective response, and public education. ITEWC has
been organizing regular workshops, trainings and seminars to create awareness about tsunamis
to stake holders. ITEWC, INCOIS regularly conducts communication tests and mock exercises to
test the efficiency of communication links to evaluate the readiness to handle emergency
Tsunami Ready is a community performance-based programme initiated by the
Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) of UNESCO to promote tsunami
preparedness through active collaboration of public, community leaders, and national and local
emergency management agencies. The main objective of this programme is to improve coastal
community's preparedness for tsunami emergencies, to minimize the loss of life and property
and to ensure a structural and systematic approach in building community preparedness
through fulfilling the best-practice indicators (11 Nos) set by the Intergovernmental
Coordination Group for the Indian Ocean Tsunami Warning and Mitigation System
(ICG/IOTWMS) of UNESCO-IOC. Fulfillment of the guidelines ensures communities have a strong
end-to-end tsunami early warning and mitigation system with a particular focus on community
awareness and preparedness to respond. The programme contributes to the overall aim and
goals of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction (SFDRR) 2015-2030 and its 7 global
targets. Additionally, it contributes to Goal 11 of the Sustainable Development Goals Make
cities inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable'.
As per the regional guidelines, each community is expected to fulfill 11 important indicators to
be recognized as Tsunami Ready. Each community that successfully builds their capacities and
demonstrates the following 11 indicators are carefully assessed and provided with a recognition
certificate by UNESCO-IOC:
1. Have Community Tsunami Risk Reduction Plan.
2. Have designated and mapped tsunami hazard inundation zones.
3. Have a public display of tsunami information.
4. Produce easily understood tsunami evacuation maps as determined to be appropriate
by local authorities in collaboration with communities.
5. Develop and distribute outreach and public education materials.
6. Hold at least three outreach or educational activities annually.
7. Conduct an annual tsunami community exercise.
8. Address tsunami hazards in the communities Emergency Operations Plan (EOP)..
9. Commit to supporting the Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) during a tsunami
incident, if an EOC is open and activated.
10. Commit to supporting the Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) during a tsunami
incident, if an EOC is open and activated.
11. Have redundant and reliable means for a 24-hour warning point and/or EOC to
disseminate official tsunami alerts to the public.
To implement and monitor the implementation of Tsunami Ready and IOWave Exercises in
India, Ministry of Earth Sciences established a National Board under the chairmanship of
Director, INCOIS with members drawn from Ministry of Earth Sciences (MoES), National
Disaster Management Authority (NDMA), Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), Odisha State
Disaster Management Authority (OSDMA), Andaman & Nicobar Islands Directorate of Disaster
Management (DDM) and INCOIS.
The Odisha State Disaster Management Authority (OSDMA), Odisha implemented Tsunami
Ready Programme on pilot basis in 6 villages i.e. Boxipalli⁃Venkatraipur ⁃ Ganjam District,
Noliasahi ⁃ Jagatsinghpur District, Keutajanga ⁃ Puri District, Jayadevkasaba Pahi ⁃ Balasore
District, Podhuan ⁃ Bhadrak District and Tantiapal Sasan ⁃ Kendrapara District. Tsunami Ready
tested the indicator during the IOWave18 Exercise.
The National Board along with UNESCO-IOC delegates initially visited two of these villages
Venkatraipur in Ganjam District, Noliasahi in Jagatsingpur District of Odisha during December
2019 and recognized them as Tsunami Ready nationally and recommended for UNESO-IOC for
Based on the recommendations of the National Board after evaluation process, the UNESCOIOC
has recognized Venkatraipur and Noliasahi villages from Odisha as Tsunami Ready
communities. This is great achievement for Odisha and India. With the UNESCO-IOC recognition
of these two communities from Odisha, India is the first country in the Indian Ocean Region and
Odisha is the first state to achieve the Tsunami Ready recognition.
A Virtual event was organized on 7 August 2020 for UNESCO-IOC Tsunami Ready Recognition
Certification. Chief Guest of the event Dr. M. Rajeevan, Secretary, Ministry of Earth Sciences
(MoES), Govt. of India and Guest of Honor Shri. G.V.V. Sarma, Member Secretary, National
Disaster Management Authority (NDMA), Govt. of India presented the Certificates of
Recognition and Appreciation to the two villages and Officials of OSDMA.
INCOIS initiated activities to extend the UNESCO-IOC Tsunami Ready programme in all Coastal
States/UTs on a pilot scale to build tsunami resilient communities. INCOIS has organized a
UNESCO-IOC Tsunami Ready Workshop for Disaster Management Officers (DMOs) in
collaboration with ICG/IOTWMS and IOTIC of UNESCO-IOC during 10-12 December 2019 at
INCOIS, Hyderabad. Most of Coastal States/UTs DMOs are ready to implement the Tsunami
Ready programme in vulnerable communities in their respected States.