National Safety Day: Works Dept Comes Up With Proactive Measures, Health Safety and Environment On Top Priority

Bhubaneswar: On the 50th National Safety Day at ‘Nirman Soudh’, the Works Department of State government has come up with proactive measures for ensuring sustainability factors without compromising the inclusive rights-based approach.

Speaking at the workshop organised by the department, the Commissioner cum Secretary Dr Krishan Kumar, IAS, said that safety of working personnel and other stakeholders including the public has been soon assuming immense significance as a human rights issue. Hence it becomes the prime most factor for the agents of development, be it govt or corporate to critically appreciate the sustainability issues pertaining to the social, environmental and health fronts.

The Works Secretary also harped upon the key initiatives of the department in compliance with the
national and international guidelines which includes mandatory third-party safety audit for projects
estimated above 100 crores, setting up a Health, Safety and Environment Cell in the premises of
Nirman Soudh under the coordination of EIC (Civil) and Dy Secretary to Govt in the Works Department,
empanelment of third party safety auditors by the department on regular basis catering to projects of
different cost, capacity building of field engineers through workshops at regular interval for
strengthening monitoring issues at the worksite and sensitization workshop for the stakeholders
involved in and impacted by projects worth 10 crore and above.

Affirming his firm conviction on the importance of SHE issues being prioritized in Odisha Government’s Five T Charter Dr Krishan Kumar said that efforts will be pioneered by establishing an independent Directorate that will oversee the compliance on, SHE, social impact and community’s involvement issues.

At the outset in his technical presentation, the Chief Engineer (Roads) Manoranjan Mishra focused
on key aspects like ensuring environmental safety and preventing occupational health hazards through substantial reduction in polluting factors and improvement in air ambience.

Dy Secretary to Govt in Works Department Parul Patwari hinted upon the public health issues by highlighting the magnitude of the ‘out of pocket expenses’ of economically marginalized sections and stressed on govt’s commitments to propagate and perpetuate the SHE interventions. Chief Engineer (Design) Dr NC Pal emphasized on the need of appointing independent safety consultants in all major projects having pervasive impact on the community.

EIC (Building) Bijay Tripathy and MD of OB&CC Jaya Krishna Das addressed the engineers to
ensure community’s safety and working personnel’s quality of life.

Participating in the workshop, Safety Engineer from L&T Sushant Rath focused on behavior-based safety and speaking on virtual mode, Alok Shrivastava, the Corporate Head, HSE at Sapoorji Pallonji lauded the efforts of Odisha govt in augmenting the concern for HSE factors.