“We cannot avoid a storm from striking, but, we can definitely prevent our ship from sinking!”
A few weeks ago, I noticed something different in my household. At first, it was not easily discernible. But slowly, it became too obvious to be ignored:
Every evening, it is a custom for my mother to sit and watch the telly for an hour. The programmes on her watch list mostly consisted of soap operas as well as the occasional reality game show. However, over the past few weeks, I find her attention focused on news channels. One day, I discovered that she has started to spend the entire hour watching the news, where the news anchors were throwing around ominous predictions of war. That is when I realized that a war, whether an Indo-Pak battle, or even a World War III, might not be an impossibility after all.
If and when there is a war, it is important to take a few steps and adhere to the following guidelines:
Organize your documents:
In times of emergency, it is important to have all the necessary documents around yourself. Organize your PAN Card, Aadhaar Card, passport etc in one folder along with those of your family. Keep one of the identification documents on your person at all times. Also, organize documents related to money and property, such as deeds, wills, bonds, etc., and keep them at hand.
It is important to secure the assets before a war, as it may be confiscated by the government. Do not keep your money in overseas banks, as you might not be able to access it. Invest your money in concrete assets such as land, gold, etc.
In times of emergency, do not hoard excessive food as it might lead to inflation in prices. Instead, replenish your stores with medicines and other articles for first aid. Make sure you have tools required for small household repairs. A small store of non-perishable food may be maintained.
Become physically fit:
Start training to be physically strong and fit, because things may turn out ugly and there may be no access to modes of travel, electricity, etc., and the only way to evacuate and move may barefoot. Studying martial art and survival techniques will prove to be of great help.
During war, it is not advisable to leave the country, since there may be a clampdown on immigration in other countries. Instead, consider moving to the countryside. Prepare a bag for each of your family member with the essentials for survival, such as clothes, non-perishable food, water, documents for identification, medicines and some cash, which may enable a person to leave instantly in case of a necessity.
Make plans for the children:
In case you have children in your household, it is important to adhere to some special guidelines. Consider sending them to relatives who live in the countryside during war. Do not schedule the evacuation at the last minute, but plan the details well in advance. Fasten a nametag to their clothes that would include the details of the guardian in a manner so that it will not come off easily.
If you adhere to these guidelines, it may not be easy, but it won’t be impossible for you to survive through times of crisis. The key to disaster management is keeping calm and doing your best.