World Culture Festival: New panel contradicts report

Policy matters this week
Front view of the giant stage under construction for the World Culture Festival. (Source: Yamuna Jiye Abhiyan)
Front view of the giant stage under construction for the World Culture Festival. (Source: Yamuna Jiye Abhiyan)

No compaction of soil on the World Culture Festival site: New panel to NGT

As per the new three-member committee formed by the National Green Tribunal, the site, where the World Culture Festival was held on the Yamuna floodplains in Delhi in 2015, has no compaction of soil. The new findings contradict the revelations of the earlier seven-member expert panel which had alleged that the Yamuna floodplains were completely destroyed due to the event. The new panel further claimed that the site where the function was held is now fully covered with grass and some saplings of tree species which wouldn't have been possible on compacted soil.

Rajasthan approves agriculture connection policy 2017

Rajasthan government has given its approval to agriculture connection policy-2017 for power connections to small and marginal farmers. According to new provisions, small and marginal farmers of below poverty line (BPL) category will get priority over others in receiving agriculture connections of five horsepower. Along with this, farmers living on the periphery of Indira Gandhi Canal Project who are being affected by waterlogging will also get the same benefit.

Assam government plans to build highway embankment to control floods

The state government is planning to build 1300 km of highway along the Brahmaputra river in the state. The highway, that will cost nearly Rs 400 billion, will serve the twin purpose of controlling the annual floods and improving the connectivity in the region drastically. However, as per the environmentalists, the embankment will cause even more devastation as it will interfere with the natural flow of the river and therefore increase the intensity of floods. 

Apps launched for sending alerts on earthquake parameters and oceanic disturbances

The Ministry of Earth Sciences has launched two Mobile apps, India Quake and Sagar Vani, for the dissemination of earthquake parameters and ocean-related information and alerts (like high waves and Tsunami early warnings), respectively. The app will send alerts to the user community in a timely manner for their safety. While India Quake has been developed by the National Centre for Seismology, Sagar Vani has been developed by the ESSO-Indian National Centre for Ocean Information Services (INCOIS). 

Sanitation survey for 2018 launched

The housing and urban affairs ministry has launched the Swachh Survey ranking of cities for 2018 along with new parameters. The new provision, which will assess 4,041 cities and towns, provides for negative marks that will ensure no faking or misrepresentation of the progress of sanitation infrastructure. Also, a new element of 'Innovation' has been introduced this year with a weightage of 5 percent, to encourage cities to take up innovative sanitation practices and solutions.

This is a roundup of important policy matters from July 25 - 31, 2017. Also, read the news this week.