Pesticides kill 18 Maharashtra farmers

News this week
A farmer sprays pesticides on his vegetable farm. (Source: IWP Flickr photos)
A farmer sprays pesticides on his vegetable farm. (Source: IWP Flickr photos)

Maharashtra farmers die from inhaling toxic pesticides

Nearly 18 farmers have died and 600 hospitalised in Yavatmal district and surrounding areas of Maharashtra after inhaling toxic insecticide fumes sprayed in farmlands. Following the incident, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has ordered a high-level probe into the matter and has also directed authorities to make it mandatory for the pesticides companies to distribute special protective kits to  prevent recurrence of similar incidents in the future.

Experts unhappy with new wetland rules

Even after the Supreme Court has expressed its concern over the disappearance of wetlands in the country, the environment ministry has removed salt pans from the definition of wetland exposing these eco-sensitive tracts to exploitation. Even experts have claimed that the new rules are disastrous and they have exposed the ecologically fragile water bodies to further destruction rather than preservation. Moreover, the new rules have also failed to provide directions on punishing the violators. 

NEERI devises plan to revive country's rivers

The National Environmental Engineering Research Institute (NEERI) has prepared a two-pronged plan to rejuvenate major and minor rivers of the country. The focus will be on Ganga, Yamuna, Narmada, Daman Ganga, Godavari, Chandrabhaga, and parts of Krishna river along with Nag, Mithi and Nasardi rivers in Maharashtra and some rivers of Rajasthan and Andhra Pradesh. The two main aspects of the plan include scientific assessment of site conditions and creating public connect and mass awareness.

Tribals oppose Par-Tapi-Narmada link

People from tribal-dominated districts of Dang, Tapi and Valsad have stirred protests against the interlinking of the Par-Tapi-Narmada river basins in Gujarat and Maharashtra. As per the tribals, the project will take away their farmland which they have developed by incurring substantial expenditure. According to the state irrigation secretary N.K. Jadav, however, the National Water Development Agency (NWDA) has prepared a detailed project report but the state government is yet to accept it due to submergence issues.  

Board stops Telangana and Andhra from drawing excess Krishna water

The Krishna River Management Board (KRMB) has ordered the Centre to intervene and stop the Telangana and Andhra Pradesh governments from releasing excess water from the Srisailam reservoir to Krishna river. According to the board, Telangana has been permitted to release just 8 tmcft of water while it has released 28.414 tmcft and the Andhra Pradesh which has the permission to release 5 tmcft water released 14.049 tmcft instead. Moreover, both states have not responded to the board's earlier request of stopping the release of water. 

This is a roundup of important news from October 3 - 9, 2017. Also read the policy matters this week. 

 

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