Press on Environment and Wildlife
Save Ganga' activist's fast enters 102nd day (October Week #1 (2013))
Environmentalist and former IIT professor GD Agrawal started his fast-unto-death to save the Ganga but the event has been completely ignored by the powers that be, including the UPA government at the Centre.

The octogenarian has now stopped taking water. Agrawal has been pleading with the central government to take strong measures to protect the Ganga river and its ecology and keep its flow uninterrupted.

Water rights activist Rajendra Singh, Ravi Chopra and Professor  Rashid Siddiqui – resigned, for the second time, from the  membership of the National Ganga River Basin Authority (NGRBA) on Friday.


Survey finds realtors violating norms near Okhla sanctuary (October Week #1 (2013))
In a joint effort involving Noida Authority and Noida Police, a survey was conducted to identify realty projects being developed within a 10 kilometer radius of the Okhla Bird Sanctuary. The team found that around 40 developers were carrying on construction
without any environmental clearance. The National Green Tribunal, in its August 14 order, had ordered for such surveys.

Gautam Buddh Nagar forest department said the realty projects of more than 50 developers are falling within 10 km radius


Mockery in the name of relief: Uttarakhand flood victims get as little as Rs.150 compensation for cattle & property losses (October Week #1 (2013))
A tragedy has visited Uttarakhand a little over three months after heavy rainfall triggered disaster across the Himalayan state

Data released by the Information and Public Relations Department of the Uttarakhand government for Bageshwar shows that Rs.2,27,38,756 has been distributed to the victims till date.

On the ground, it doesn't add up. A village in district Bageshwar called Kanda has received only Rs.8,680 as compensation after landslides left cattle, farms and houses damaged. Many residents lost their entire families.

The details of cheque numbers and amount given to at least 25 farmers are available with Mail Today, and make for pretty sorry reading.

People are still contributing from their income for the victims, but that help does not seem to have reached the right destination.

Read more at:

Local seeds best bet against climate change (October Week #1 (2013))
At the grassroots level, a few farmers are doing their bit to preserve traditional and local varieties of seeds.

“These farmers are commonly called ‘Custodian farmers’. They preserve traditional seeds and make sure that they don’t disappear amongst the variety of hybrid seeds available in the market which farmers prefer because of the promise of high yield,” says
M. Palanisamy, Programme Director, Rainfed Farming Development Programme at the Dhan Foundation in Madurai.

-------“Farmers should set apart a portion of their land for cultivation of traditional seeds. With live genetic resources, or maintaining nurseries rather than seeds, it will be easier for farmers to choose varieties and see the benefits for themselves,”
said R. Adinarayanan, a faculty member at the Tata Dhan Academy.


Techie in Pune tries to hack into tiger's digital collar (October Week #1 (2013))
In a first of its kind case, a cyber expert based in Pune tried to hack into the digital collar of a tiger which was in Madhya Pradesh to track the movements of the big cat.

The incident prompted authorities at the Bori-Satpura tiger reserve to seek registration of an FIR with a view to a detailed probe into the case.

"It is a very serious matter. For the first time, a techie has tried to hack a tiger's collar. It is an attempt to poach tigers in Madhya Pradesh. We want a detailed probe into the matter," said Bhopal-based wildlife activist Ajay Dubey.

Six tiger reserves in Madhya Pradesh — Bandhavgarh, Kanha, Panna, Bori-Satpura, Sanjay Dubri and Pench — contain about 257 big cats. The tiger population in the country was estimated to be 1,706 as per data collected in 2010.


Jumbo kills UK tourist in TN forest (October Week #1 (2013))
A 67-year-old British tourist was killed by a wild elephant at Masinagudi near Gudalur in the Nilgiris late Thursday evening.

Several resorts near the Mudumalai Tiger Reserve in Masinagudi and neighbouring villages lure tourists with the promise of night safaris to sight elephants, tigers and leopards. Wildlife activists allege that jeeps from several resorts drive into the jungles
with these tourists in violation of forest department rules and disturb the wildlife. They also put the tourists at risk, wildlife activists say.


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