'Below normal' rainfall for India this monsoon: IMD
Based on the assessment of a global forum of weather experts, the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) has indicated a 33% and 35% possibility of rainfall being 90-96% and 96-104% of the long period average, respectively, during the upcoming monsoon season. The prediction is made in wake of a forecast of the possibility of a developing El Nino in the equatorial pacific region. However, the Director General of IMD says that the Indian Ocean Dipole, which is likely to be favourable this year, might neutralise the effects of El Nino.
Himachal villagers conduct own Impact Assessment of hydel projects on Sutlej
Residents of more than 250 villages in Himachal Pradesh have rejected the Indian Council of Forest Research and Education's report on the Cumulative Impact Assessment of the Sutlej river basin. The report has overlooked the social, cultural, economic and environmental impacts and is totally in favour of hydropower projects, claim the residents. They have undertaken their own survey for assessing the amount of environmental damage caused by hydropower projects in the state and will submit the report to the High Court for further action.
Land dries in Gujarat and so the people's trust on its government
The concrete canals built six years ago in Ahmedabad district's Dholka, Sanand and Bavla talukas under the Narmada irrigation system are today breaching at every ten steps. The reason behind the successful completion of the project, worth hundreds of crores, was to click photographs for records, after which the water just disappeared from the canals. The concerned authorities have turned a blind eye to the faulty construction and the state government takes no notice of the large chunk of dried up agricultural land in the region.
Giant matkas to curb Yamuna's pollution
With an aim to reduce pollution in the Yamuna, an NGO in Delhi has placed four vessels shaped like earthern pots, on cycle-carts along the ITO bridge for collecting religious offerings. The collected offerings are taken to Ghazipur for segregation and recycling. The project, which has collected 32 truckloads of material so far, was initiated in October last year to collect offerings from popular temples across the city and now the carts reach the bridge everyday after making a round of temples in the morning.
Dry spell in Tripura takes a heavy toll on tea industry
The tea industry in Tripura is facing a downfall due to drought-like conditions looming in the state. Tripura, which usually witnesses heavy rains during March and April beneficial for its tea gardens, has seen very less rainfall this year. Along with damaging nearly 30% of the state's crops, the prolonged dry spell has led to an acute drinking water crisis and continuous depletion of groundwater in the state.
This is a weekly roundup of important news from April 21-27 2014. Also read last week's policy matters updates.