QAhmedabad: 222 Lions Dead in 2 Years; Dry Spell Looms Large

Here is your round-up of the top stories from Ahmedabad.

3 min read
A Gir lion resting in the shade.

1. State Lost 222 Lions in the Past Two Years: Govt

Gujarat lost 222 lions in the past two years, the government told the Assembly on Tuesday, 16 July. Of these, 34 deaths were unnatural. The government has booked 74 people for illegal lion shows in Gir Sanctuary, home to Asiatic lions. As per the last census, Gujarat had 523 lions.

Among the total deaths, 82 were reported in 2017-18, while the rest were in the next year. Of the unnatural deaths, 11 were reported between June 2018 and May 2019. The rest were in the previous year during the same time period.

In a span of a fortnight, 23 lions had died in 2018 after the spread of canine distemper virus and protozoal infection in Gir. Although officially the government had said that only 11 of the 23 deaths were due to CDV.

(Source: DNA)

2. Dry Spells Loom Large, Crop Failure Likely in 6 Districts

State officials are worried about kharif crop sowing failing in six districts of Kutch, Morbi, Porbandar, Rajkot, Jamnagar and Ahmedabad, if it doesn't rain in about a week. Farmers say that while the government's statistics show a healthy picture, the ground reality could be drastically different as inadequate rain is on the verge of destroying crops.

According to the weekly acreage report of Gujarat's agriculture department, the kharif acreage as on 15 July stood at 48,79,785 hectare, which is 57.57% of the three-year average of 84,76,895 hectare and higher than the 38,71,399 hectare sowing in the corresponding period last year. However, farmers from many parts of the state have started complaining that sowing has failed.

Around 300 farmers from Halariya and Hulariya villages of Amreli district have written to the local taluka official and extension officer, saying that sowing has already failed and that their crop insurance should be settled.

(Source: DNA)

3. Thakor Community Bans Cellphones for Unmarried Women

Members of the Thakor community in Gujarat's Banaskantha district have issued a diktat banning unmarried women from carrying mobile phones and fining parents of youngsters opting for inter-caste marriages.

The diktat was passed "unanimously" in a meeting on 14 July by elders of the community from 12 villages in the district's Dantiwada taluka, a leader from the community said Tuesday.

Congress MLA Ganiben Thakor said she saw nothing wrong in the move to ban mobile phones for girls. They should stay away from the technology and spend more time studying, she told reporters.

(Source: Business Standard)

4. Seven Islands in Nal Sarovar Bird Sanctuary Encroached

Seven islands part of the protected Nal Sarovar Bird Sanctuary near Ahmedabad have been encroached, the Gujarat government informed the assembly on Tuesday, 16 July during the Question Hour. However, the government has been successful in clearing encroachment from one such island.

The state government in a written response to a question raised by Viramgam Congress MLA Lakhabhai Bharwad stated that there were 300 islands spread across the water body that forms a part of the Nal Sarovar bird sanctuary as on 31 May, 2019, of which seven have been encroached. In the last two years, legal notices have been issued to the sarpanches of these villages that have encroached the islands, the government stated.

(Source: The Indian Express)

5. Health Organisation Writes to Centre Seeking Implementation of Measures to Eliminate TB

A Vadodara based environmental health organisation, the Occupational and Environmental Network of India (OEHNI), has approached the Union health ministry with regard to screening and interventions under the National Strategic Plan for Tuberculosis (TB) Elimination (2017-2025) and associated policies being implemented by the Revised National Tuberculosis Control Program (RNTCP).

In a letter written to Dr Harsh Vardhan, Union Health and Family Welfare minister, the organisation has urged the implementation of measures to help achieve the goal of eliminating TB in India by 2030.

(Source: The Indian Express)

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