The former head of an Indian government rescue team dispatched for relief operations in Onagawa, Miyagi Prefecture, following the Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami in 2011 is sharing the lessons learned from the disaster-stricken town in his home country.

Alok Awasthi, the ex-commandant of India's National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), has compiled 10 tips on how to respond in a similar crisis for India, which is prone to natural disasters such as floods, earthquakes and drought. He has been sharing lessons learned from the disaster victims in the Tohoku region through lectures and other activities aimed at raising awareness of disaster response across India.

"Wow, it's miraculous that Onagawa, then so severely destroyed, has transformed into such an amazing town!" Awasthi, 50, said with admiration while looking at a photograph of a commercial area in front of the JR Onagawa Station. It was a scene that was hard to imagine at the time of the disaster, with the rescue team witnessing a mountain of rubble piled up amid the town's severe damage from the massive quake and roughly 20-meter-high tsunami.