Research Papers

  • Access to safe drinking water and diarrhoeal diseases in India Although as high as 82.7 % rural and 91.4 % urban populations have access to safe drinking water in India according to the Census 2011, this does not provide assurance of adequate quality along with equitable distribution of water. The ...
    aarti kelkar kh...posted 2 years 10 months agoread more
  • Urban sanitation in India and the need to look at Brazil India constitutes only 11% of the world’s urban population but contributes 52% to the open defecation in the world’s urban spaces (WHO-UNICEF, 2014). This  policy brief titled ‘Urban sanitation in India- Why Brazil matters', by the...
    sabitakaushalposted 2 years 10 months agoread more
  • Although agriculture is the largest source of livelihood for people in India, its share in the gross domestic product (GDP) has been declining over time with deficit rainfall over the last two years having affected crop production and farmer's incomes. This article 'Water management and resilience ...
    aarti kelkar kh...posted 2 years 10 months agoread more
  • India continues to have the highest number of people defecating out in the open according to recent figures by the World Health Organisation with only 32.7 % of people in rural areas having access to toilets (Census 2011). The Swachh Bharat Mission was launched by the government in 2014 in response ...
    aarti kelkar kh...posted 2 years 11 months agoread more
  • About 3 million children from developing countries below the age of 5 die every year due to diarrhoeal diseases caused by polluted water, poor sanitation and faecal contamination of drinking water sources. The paper titled 'Effect of storage containers on coliforms in household d...
    aarti kelkar kh...posted 2 years 11 months agoread more
  • Menstrual hygiene management continues to be a challenge for rural women in India and many women are forced to resort to unhygienic ways of managing menstruation thus affecting their health and well-being. The paper titled 'Menstrual management and low cost sanitary napkins' published in the Ec...
    aarti kelkar kh...posted 2 years 11 months agoread more
  • One of the tasks that the current government had promised to work on is the fast tracking of the process of appraisal of projects seeking environmental approvals from the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change. The article titled 'Environmental regulation in India: Moving 'forward'...
    aarti kelkar kh...posted 2 years 11 months agoread more
  • Construction industry is a booming industry, with the real estate sector contributing heavily towards the country’s GDP. However, it is also very water-intensive consuming an enormous amount of fresh water. After agriculture, the real estate sector is the second largest employment g...
    sabitakaushalposted 2 years 11 months agoread more
  • The goal of securing universal access to safe drinking water continues to be elusive for India inspite of the impressive strides made in the current years. The working paper titled 'Unravelling rural India’s enduring water indigence: Framing the questions, issues, options and opportunities' publis...
    aarti kelkar kh...posted 2 years 12 months agoread more
  • The present government has set a target of 100 gigawatts (GW) of solar power capacity for the country by 2022. The paper titled 'India’s 100GW of solar by 2022: Pragmatism or targetitis?' published in the Economic and Political Weekly, informs that solar energy is indeed an important and desi...
    aarti kelkar kh...posted 3 years 1 week agoread more
  • Groundwater is the major source of drinking water in both urban and rural India, and an important source of water for agricultural and industrial sectors. India is by far the largest and fastest growing consumer of groundwater in the world and is exploiting the resource beyond sustainable levels.&nb...
    sabitakaushalposted 3 years 1 week agoread more
  • India has had very little to celebrate on World Wetlands Day this year as it has lost its wetlands at an alarming rate of 38% in just a decade (1991-2001). Additionally, there continues to be a regulatory vacuum around wetlands, because of which they continue to be ungoverned and unprotect...
    aarti kelkar kh...posted 3 years 2 weeks agoread more
  • Open defecation continues to be practised by as high as 65% of India's rural population and only 14% of rural households have access to piped water supply leading to high rates of infant deaths and mortality. This working paper titled 'Toilets can work: Short and medium run health impacts of ad...
    aarti kelkar kh...posted 3 years 3 weeks agoread more
  • An ever expanding middle class has come to symbolise a new India which is changing individual and household consumption patterns by accessing resources and technologies beyond their availabilities. Water as an everyday resource has not escaped this whirlwind of change and a substantial volume of wat...
    aarti kelkar kh...posted 3 years 3 weeks agoread more
  • Erratic rainfall, heavy storms, extreme weather and droughts are some of the major impacts of climate changes. Though it affects everyone, certain sections of society, like indigenous people who live closer to the natural environment, are in fact more vulnerable to these variations. However, they ar...
    sabitakaushalposted 3 years 1 month agoread more
  • Growth and development indicators at the policy level many a times demand the need for factual data that is often standardised and expressed as numbers in order to make each local context comparable to other and allow data to be aggregated to higher geographical scales. This is also true of the fiel...
    aarti kelkar kh...posted 3 years 1 month agoread more
  • The Babur Nama mentions that the “the finest running water in Hindustan is that in the Dun.” The expanse of the valley and the ridgelines of the two major watersheds (Ganga and Yamnuna) passing through Dehradun, make it a unique ecosystem which can support a wide variety of plants and ...
    sabitakaushalposted 3 years 1 month agoread more
  • Despite India's rapid economic growth in recent decades, open defecation rates continue to be very high. This presents a unique puzzle for scholars of development because other regions where people are poorer, literacy rates lower, and drinking water more scarce, are better off that India when it co...
    aarti kelkar kh...posted 3 years 1 month agoread more
  • In India, managing the current demand and planning for future water demand in urban areas is becoming a major challenge for urban water supply authorities. According to current figures by the World Health Organisation, 10% in urban areas in India still do not have access to improved water supply. M...
    aarti kelkar kh...posted 3 years 2 months agoread more
  • Marathwada, one of the most drought prone areas in Maharashtra, continues to be in the news over the last few months due to the severe agarian crisis that the region has been facing and the very high rates of farmers suicides. In fact, Marathwada has now been referred to as the suicide capital of th...
    aarti kelkar kh...posted 3 years 2 months agoread more

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From increasing health issues among residents to declining forest produce, coal mining in Chhattisgarh has devastating outcomes.

It was in the late 90s that Raigarh emerged as the hub for power, coal mining and sponge iron in Chhattisgarh. The coalfield in Mand Raigarh is spread over an area of more than 1,12,000 hectares with an estimated 21,117 metric tonnes of coal. 

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A study from the Sundarbans shows that conserving biodiversity by excluding indigenous populations has threatened not only the survival of the forest but also the sustainability of the region.

Can forest conservation policies that ignore the livelihood needs of local, indigenous populations succeed in protecting biodiversity and wildlife?

Experiences from the Sundarbans show that such policies not only result in the suffering of the local population, it also leads to the exploitation of natural resources and biodiversity in the region.

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A study finds poor water quality behind high incidence of waterborne diseases among households in Ludhiana. The poor suffer the most from it.

Water pollution is a serious problem in India with 70 percent of its surface and groundwater resources contaminated by biological, toxic, organic, and inorganic pollutants. As a result, the socio-economic cost of poor water quality is high.

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Unregulated construction and use of farm ponds in Maharashtra have further aggravated the drinking water situation in water-scarce areas in the state.

In the last few years, the water situation in Maharashtra has got worse resulting in severe droughts leading to drinking water scarcity and agricultural crisis. This has caused immense suffering for the rural folk in the state and saw instances of violence in the name of water. The government was forced to enforce Section 144 of the Indian Penal Code to facilitate smooth distribution of water among the population.

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The new urban water supply scheme in Madhya Pradesh that encourages private sector participation is replete with lacunae, according to an NGO that studied the scheme.

In November 2011, the government of Madhya Pradesh sanctioned Rs 493 crore to 37 Urban Local Bodies (ULB) for drinking water supply projects under the Chief Minister’s Urban Drinking Water Supply Scheme (CMUWSS) along the lines of the Urban Infrastructure Development Scheme for Small and Medium Towns (UIDSSMT).

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A study from Telangana finds faulty power subsidy policies of the state and the resultant increase in tube wells with electric pumps as reasons for depleting groundwater levels.

According to the data released by the Food and Agricultural Organisation’s AQUASTAT in 2010, at 250 billion m³ per year, India is one of the countries that uses groundwater the most. As high as 80 percent of its water is used for irrigation of which 65 percent is groundwater.

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There is a grave health concern around women manual workers who work under extreme conditions of heat with poor access to sanitary facilities. This needs urgent redressal at the policy level.

In a tropical country like India, the summer months are hot which threaten the health of millions of people every year.

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A study finds increased risk of sexual violence among women who defecate in the open due to lack of proper sanitation facilities.

While nearly half of the world’s population (42 percent) lacks access to improved sanitation conditions, India is the worst performer in sanitation coverage, even below those countries with half of the households (53 percent) not having access to toilets. At 49.8 percent, India has the highest number of people practising open defecation in the world.

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Potential threats of environmental deterioration continue to be ignored in Kollam partly due to the difficulty in regulating an industry that produces resources of high strategic importance.

Mining and processing of heavy and rare earth minerals can produce a tremendously negative impact on the land and environment in the area, the magnitude and intensity of which depends on the kind of chemicals and processes used, the efforts taken in the management of waste as well as on environmental fragility of the location. It can also endanger the health of local residents as well as their livelihoods through water pollution and destruction of farmland thereby violating the rights of local communities.

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Reviving traditional water bodies, and not environmentally-unsustainable mega projects which are expensive, is the most viable solution to deal with water scarcity in parched lands like Bundelkhand.

Although droughts are not new in India, we are seeing more of it of late. The paper Seeking viable solutions to water security in Bundelkhand published in the Economic and Political Weekly dated November 5, 2016 informs that people in South Asia have managed the vagaries of seasons for centuries through water-harvesting structures and by managing the available water efficiently through traditional water management practices that utilised water without wastage.

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