This year witnessed the driest June in 113 years writes SWATI BANSAL
India receives only 85.8 mm of rain this June
According to the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD), India has received only 85.8 mm of rainfall between June 1 and 28, making it the driest June since 1901. June 2014 has experienced 42% lesser rainfall from the average. The worst impacted states are Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat and Rajasthan. However, both the IMD and the government are hoping that the rainfall in the months of July and August will make up this deficit.
CAG finds serious loopholes in the management of Kumbh Mela 2013
According to the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG), 59% of construction work and 19% supplies were incomplete when the Mahakumbh began in January last year. It has also reported sub-standard work and procurement of excess material which had resulted in funds being blocked. The Uttar Pradesh Government did not adhere to the environmental pollution norms and depended on the waste management infrastructure available at Allahabad for waste treatment. Moreover, during the bathing dates biochemical oxygen demand levels in both the Ganga and Sangam rivers were quite above the standards.
CAG reports series of scam in Delhi’s drainage, desilting and flood control measures
CAG report on ‘Flood control and drainage system in Delhi’ has pointed out several frauds and neglect by various authorities. The report reveals that 7,30,000 cubic metres of silt removed from Najafgarh and Trunk One drains were dumped right next to them. Also, the master plans of both the sewerage and drainage systems remains unprepared and the topographical survey of Yamuna, supposed to have been done by the Flood Control Department, is still pending. Waterlogging points in the city continue to flood despite remedial measures undertaken on them.
Mass mortality of fish observed in three major rivers of Assam
Large number of fish have been found dead in the Kolong, Kopili and Kiling rivers in Morigaon district in Assam. The Revenue Department suspects arsenic pollution to be the casue. According to them arsenic-laden groundwater might have mixed with the rivers that lead to death of fishes. It has asked the Geological Survey of India to investigate further.
Himachal’s mini hydel plant poses risk to nature and rivers
Villagers of Hallan-2 village in Kullu, Himachal Pradesh, blame authorities of the 24 MW Kanchanjunga hydropower project for dumping tonnes of muck in the Bijara and Choka rivulets. They have also accused authorities for destroying their traditional grazing fields and dozens of trees which are lying in the water streams. Government officials have turned a blind eye to this menace and have taken no action againt the project authorities.