Citizens' Rights and Duties

Featured Articles
December 6, 2019 A report by the India Rivers Forum highlights the need to focus further than the main stem of the Ganga river.
Distant snow clad mountains, the smaller hills and the Ganga river (Image: Srimoyee Banerjee, Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA 4.0)
November 21, 2019 A report by NIUA brings to light the chinks in Jaipur's sewage system and suggests some solutions.
Routine check done by the sewage treatment plant staff in Delawas, Jaipur. The plant is part of the ADB best practices projects list. (Image: Asian Development Bank, Flickr Commons)
November 18, 2019 Bangalore's water utility is understaffed, under financed and unable to service the city's water needs.
Image credit: Citizen Matters
November 15, 2019 On World Toilet Day, we bring to light the labour of India’s sewer workers - those who do the unclean work that a Clean India relies on.
Photo credit: Sharada Prasad
November 6, 2019 The number of people vulnerable to floods triggered by climate change by 2050 is triple that of previous estimates, according to a new study.
Aerial view of Chennai during floods 2015 (Image: Veethika, Wikimedia Commons, CC-SA 4.0 International)
Satyagrah by the river calls for action against erosion
River erosion, so intense, that the whole village is in danger. As the government’s help seems a distant dream, locals carry out Satyagrah to expose their plight to the authorities. Swati Bansal posted 9 months 1 week ago

Since last week, people of Birjain village have been protesting against erosion by the river bank. They are demanding that the government should put in efforts to prevent river erosion and save their houses, otherwise they will continue with their Satyagrah and perform Jal Samadhi (suicide by drowning). Sattore, a flood-prone Panchayat has about 3000 houses.

Satyagrah by the river (Image source: Umesh K Ray)
Agriculture and food security challenges amid Covid-19
The pandemic has bared our vulnerabilities and shaken our collective consciousness to focus on agriculture and rural economy. Amita Bhaduri posted 9 months 2 weeks ago

India has seen large scale rural-urban migration of people trying to escape rural distress in the last few decades.

Women farmers produce vegetables through innovative farming practices in Banka, Bihar. They can sell their produce at regional markets, and earn a better income for their families. (Image: USAID, Flickr Commons, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)
Is the draft EIA notification 2020 anti-environment?
The draft notification is alleged to dilute the process and standards for environmental clearances for industries. Amita Bhaduri posted 9 months 3 weeks ago

Economic development and creation of jobs have been India’s most critical challenges, and continue to be an overriding priority for the government. India’s rise in the World Bank’s global ranking on the ease of doing business is complemented with a successive downturn in its position on the Environmental Performance Index (EPI) from 2014 to 2019.

Villager looking at mining devastated areas in Goa (Image: Frederik Noronha; Wikimedia Commons; CC A-S A 4.0 International)
Decentralised governance key to handling Covid-19
There is a positive correlation between the panchayat raj system and effective handling of Covid-19, says Mani Shankar Aiyar. Amita Bhaduri posted 10 months ago

Panchayats have been the core of India's rural governance even before they received the constitutional mandate through the 73rd constitutional amendment in 1992, forming the basis of decentralization in the country. There are 2.5 lakh gram panchayats; over 6 lakhs villages; around 4500 urban local bodies and 4000 census towns in the country.

A first time Sarpanch of Lahora Gram Panchayat in Rajasthan’s Tonk District, stands committed, guiding the community with her political acumen. (Image: UN Women;CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)
Banking on rainwater harvesting
National Water Mission’s campaign aims at creating rainwater harvesting structures in various parts of India. Amita Bhaduri posted 10 months 1 week ago

National Water Mission’s (NWM) has launched a campaign ‘Catch the rain’ on a pan India basis to nudge the states and stakeholders to create appropriate rainwater harvesting structures (RWHS) suitable to the climatic conditions and sub-soil strata before the onset of monsoon.

As a part of the campaign, work is being done on various interventions such as water for productive use, improving irrigation practices, creating water recharge structures (Image: Pikist)
Migration and the state amid the Covid-19 pandemic
The Covid-19 prompted migration crisis brought India’s inequalities into sharp relief. Amita Bhaduri posted 10 months 2 weeks ago

Through no fault of their own, migrants were forced to leave the cities after the government imposed a Covid-19 induced national lockdown in late March. After losing their work, fearing they would run out of cash and food they trudged back along with their families to the villages in search of humanity, food, and a place to live.

Migrants contribute enormously to urban society and economy (Image: Pexels)
Market linkage could ensure higher returns for farm produce
A study finds out gaps in the way farmer producer organisations are handling their operations and the available infrastructure. Amita Bhaduri posted 10 months 3 weeks ago

A recent national study on farmer producer’s organisations (FPOs) supported by Tata Trusts investigates gaps looming in business transactions between FPOs and market players and recommends interventions to bridge these.

Red chilli wholesale market at Karnataka (Image: Pxhere, CC0 Public Domain)
NREGA tracker looks at the schemes’ performance
NREGA should move towards becoming an open-ended entitlement that allows every individual to work for at least 200 days, as per PAEG. Amita Bhaduri posted 10 months 4 weeks ago

As per the findings of an NREGA tracker launched by the People’s Action for Employment Guarantee (PAEG) the lockdown saw a record spike in jobs under Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA).

Women working on an NREGA site building a pond to assist in farming and water storage. Gopalpura, Jhabua, Madhya Pradesh (Image: UN Women/Gaganjit Singh)
Kamla, Kosi and Bagmati rivers in rage, disrupt life
Incessant rains in Terai region of Bihar and Nepal causes floods in North Bihar as many rivers rise above the danger mark. Swati Bansal posted 11 months 1 week ago

Due to intermittent rains in the Terai region of Bihar and Nepal, the water level of Mahananda, Kosi, Kamla and Bagmati rivers of North Bihar is continuously increasing and flood conditions have started to build in the region.

Locals provide aid to people hit by floods in Bihar
Floods in Bihar: Government prepares to shift people to safer places
As flood situation hits the state, the government is working towards taking people to safer places and preparing itself for the rescue efforts. Swati Bansal posted 11 months 1 week ago

Due to incessant rains, many rivers in Bihar are in spate and there is a situation of floods in the state. Meanwhile, the Meteorological Department has forecasted heavy rains for the next two-three days, which may worsen the situation.

Heavy rains predicted

Children drinking milk at a flood relief centre in Bihar (Source: Bhartiya Jan Utthan Parishad)