Telengana Plateau

Scientists develop a new variety of rice that needs very little water and can withstand drought.

A group of Indian, Chinese, and Canadian scientists has developed transgenic rice that gives high yield even under severe water deficit. The new rice variety has been developed by transferring a gene from a common plant, Arabidopsis thaliana, into a variety of Indian rice called samba mahsuri. This gene is known to be involved in pathways controlling growth and development. Arabidopsis thaliana is a flowering plant widely used for research purposes but it has no agronomic value as such.  

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The changing landscape from rapid development makes agriculture difficult for farmers in peri-urban Hyderabad.

Kokapet, one of the study villages for the project ‘Ensuring Water Security in Metropolitan Hyderabad’, was the first village that we visited for field work. Even though we refer to them as ‘villages’, there was very little that we found village-like here. It’s a truly peri-urban site with characteristics of a space transitioning from rural to urban. Agriculture is almost absent.

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Hyderabad sources water for most of its amusements and recreation from villages nearby, depleting groundwater and creating water shortage for the villagers.

An impromptu weekend plan landed me in Wonderla Amusement Park in Hyderabad. My fear of heights made me go only on those rides that seemed slower and lower. These happened to be the water rides, as they were my safest bet. Even if all the safety belts and harnesses of the ride failed, I would just end up falling in the water, with all my bones and skull intact. Nevertheless, I enjoyed myself.  At that point, I never questioned how this park was procuring water for all its rides.

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Excessive sand quarrying to meet the demands of the construction industry is destroying local irrigation systems in Anantapur. Which will prevail - agriculture or construction?

The construction industry went through a boom in the 1990s due to more people demanding and affording houses. This put a lot of pressure on the Pennar area in Andhra Pradesh. Sandmining, which is the process of taking sand, became rampant at that time. This caused changes in the river’s ability to carry water, blocked the water flow, impaired the drainage and almost destroyed the entire river system.

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Can you please send across the cost details to set up a 2000 lph (litres per hour) mineral water plant for areas with fluoride contaminated water. We are setting up this plant to cater to poor people as charity.

Thanks,

Prasad, Tadipatri 515411.

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Hi,

I dug a borewell at Alwal, to a depth of 400ft and found no water, but found hard rocks below. Please advice if there is any possibility of water oozing if I went beyond the rock. Should I dig deeper?

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Hello,

I live in Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh. The TDS level of my piped water supply for drinking shows 520 - 540 ppm.

I would like to know the permissible TDS levels for potable water.

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In 2010, Andhra Pradesh witnessed a series of suicides. These were not cases of farmers' suicides—a regular occurrence in the state which continues to be in the grip of an agrarian crisis. The victims in these cases happened to be the poorest of the poor; most of them illiterate dalits and adivasis. The first information reports (FIRs) of the police reveal that most of the suicides were due to coercive loan recovery tactics adopted by the mighty microfinance institutions (MFIs), that had given these people a few thousands of rupees as loans. Ironically, 2010 happened to be a year in which the micro finance industry registered a spectacular growth. This article by M Suchitra in Down to Earth deals with the issue.

Article Courtesy : Down to Earth

Author : M Suchitra

As many as 76 suicides, allegedly due to debt recovery-related harassment were reported that year in the state described as the microfinance capital of the country where one fourth of all the MFIs in the country are concentrated. Police cases were registered, many of them under the section 306 of the Indian Penal Code for abetment of suicide. It was pointed out that since the loans were insured, many of the victims were driven to suicide.

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Andhra farmers shun growing paddy this kharif in absence of buyers, storage space.


Andhra Pradesh produced 14 million tonnes of rice this year. In absence of storage space many schools function as godowns (Photo: M Suchitra)Andhra Pradesh produced 14 million tonnes of rice this year. In absence of storage space many schools function as godowns
Photo: M Suchitra

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The World Bank (WB) report on the website, highlights the seriousness of the high fluoride content of the water in Nalgonda district, its impact on the health of the population and the attempts that are being made to deal with the situation.

The fluorosis section of this website dedicated to Nalgonda district, highlights the acute problem of very high levels of fluoride in the ground water resources of the district and its impact on the health of people - a high prevalence of severe and crippling bone and skeletal deformities. The site has information on the status of the affected people, flouride levels and various articles, petitions and pictures.

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