Governor tells Indian Red Cross Society Nagaland to be prepared for any eventuality
Kohima, Nov. 17 (EMN): Nagaland Governor, Prof. Jagdish Mukhi, who is also the president of Indian Red Cross Society Nagaland (IRCSN), said that in a scenario when economic, educational and social differences could impede the smooth implementation of national development programmes, the role of the Red Cross cannot be emphasised enough.
He was speaking during the 34th annual general body meeting ceremonial function at Raj Bhavan in Kohima on Wednesday.
Lauding the Red Cross for its remarkable accomplishments over the years through its humanitarian services, including reaching out to the less privileged sections of society, particularly in times of disaster including Covid-19 pandemic period, the governor underscored the need for the society to take up programmes not only in times of trouble but also when normalcy prevails, to assist in implementation of government programmes for the benefit of the community such as Swachh Bharat initiatives, maternity and child welfare programmes and universal immunisation programme etc.
He reminded that the Red Cross must always adhere to their core principles that are voluntary service, humanity, impartiality, unity, neutrality, independence and universality.
“Let us remind ourselves on this momentous occasion of our mission and goal to prevent and alleviate human suffering with complete impartiality, making no discrimination as to race, sex and religious beliefs, language, class or political opinion,” he said.
Recalling how IRCSN state branch was first established in 1982, with its headquarters at Kohima, Mukhi said the organisation has now expanded to encompass all the districts with a total of 13 district units in 12 districts and one sub-division.
Reminding that North-east is located in the high risk seismic belt and is vulnerable to earthquake disasters, he asked the organisation to be prepared for any eventuality and natural calamities.
“The vulnerable sections of the population need to be educated and empowered; they need to be equipped with the skills to respond to such disasters adequately and in a timely manner,” the governor said, adding, “This calls for proper planning and collaboration with all stakeholders and the government.”
India has made tremendous strides in the Covid-19 vaccination programme and has managed the remarkable feat of crossing the 1 billion mark. However, overcoming vaccine hesitancy in the remaining unvaccinated adults and ensuring that the vaccine reaches the most vulnerable is the biggest hurdle.
For this, he said, it was vital for the Red Cross to reach out to the grassroots level to address issues where the Covid-19 vaccination coverage remains low, particularly in the villages and remote areas.
He also mentioned that blood donations have become a challenge during the Covid pandemic due to restrictions on gatherings and social distancing, despite blood being an essential component which acts as a life saving measure, especially for patients who depend on blood transfusion to mitigate blood loss in accident victims, major surgeries, pregnant women and critically sick patients.
Mukhi appreciated districts like Dimapur that have been making daily efforts to maintain blood donation through social media, thereby collecting more than 200 units of blood for critical patients. “The Youth are the leaders of tomorrow and therefore, they must be engaged in order to make the society robust and vibrant,” he said.
“The Red Cross branches must take initiative to tap the vast resources of manpower that are available at the schools and colleges. The minds of the young generation should be inculcated with the values and ethics which are held dearly by the Red Cross including promoting peace, prevention of disease, protection of health and life, kinship and voluntary service for the community. To that end, the membership drives for junior and youth Red Cross at schools and colleges should be scaled up,” he added.
He called upon IRCSN to evaluate and increase the membership of Red Cross in various categories such as patrons, vice-patrons, life members etc, stating that the involvement of public leaders and dignitaries strengthens the image of the organisation, enhances awareness about the noble aims and objectives, and increases participation for the overall benefit of the community.
Abeni TCK, chairperson of IRCSN, stated that the Red Cross is one of the most active organisations involved in invaluable, worldwide relief and aid during global crises. He urged upon the Red Cross branches in all the districts to take greater initiative and strive in serving the people in their respective areas.
“Let us all rededicate ourselves once again, to the ethos and selfless spirit of ‘service to humanity’ which is the very heart of the Red Cross organisation,” she said.
During the programme, Dr. Neiphi Kire, general secretary, read out the report of their business session while the governor handed over medals to decorate new patrons and vice-patrons of IRCSN.