PM MODI INAUGURATE CONFERENCE ON DISASTER RISK REDUCTION

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will on Thursday inaugurate a three-day Asian Ministerial Conference for Disaster Risk Reduction 2016. A two-member team from Pakistan will also participate in the conference, Home Minister Rajnath Singh told the media here on Wednesday. About 4,000 representatives from 61 countries will participate in the event. Forty one countries have confirmed their participation, he added. The event will help take the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030 forward. The visit of the Pakistan team to the event comes amid a sharp downturn in bilateral ties after India on October 27 asked a junior Pakistani diplomat to leave the country for running a spy ring.

Pakistan retaliated and declared Indian High Commission official Surjeet Singh as persona non grata and asked he leave the country within 48 hours. Talking about the expected outcomes of the conference, the Home Minister said that New Delhi Declaration will be made, and roadmap for effective implementation of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction will also be released. Russia and the US will also be participating in the event, he informed. On being asked how the government plans to handle the current situation on the India-Pakistan border, the Minister said the country's interests will be protected. To another query on rising pollution levels in the national capital, the Home Minister said: "It's a challenge and something is to be done about it".

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