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NGT directs States, UTs to set up nodal agencies to protect, restore waterbodies

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Rainwater harvesting

Following a plea seeking identification, protection and restoration of waterbodies in Gurugram, the National Green Tribunal (NGT) has expanded the scope of the petition and directed all States and Union Territories to designate a nodal agency under respective chief secretaries within a month.

A Bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel directed the nodal agencies to convene a meeting by January 31 to “take stock of the situation” and plan further steps, including directions to district authorities for further course of action. It also directed the nodal agencies to evolve a monitoring and grievance redressal mechanism.

Rainwater harvesting

Taking note of a report furnished by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) on rainwater harvesting, the Bench observed, “It appears that the CPCB has not appreciated the direction of this Tribunal on the subject. While rainwater harvesting maybe required in all buildings and other places in urban areas, in the present context, the Tribunal has directed setting up of such facilities in sub-water sheds along ponds for utilisation of surplus rainwater for restoration of the ponds which have become dry and for augmenting other ponds.”

Stating that there was a need for “continuous planning and monitoring” at the national, State and district levels, the panel observed that observations of the CPCB and an oversight committee needed to be acted upon.

“As suggested by the CPCB, a single agency needs to be set up in every State and Union Territory within one month. This work may either be assigned to the Wetland Authority of the state or the River Rejuvenation Committee or to any other designated authority such as the Secretary, Irrigation and Public Health or Water Resources,” the Bench said.

Business

Utilisation of cow dung will check cow slaughter: Nitin Gadkari

Gadkari said bulk utilisation of cow dung will ensure monetary gains for farmers and will also desist them from selling cows in the market.

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Cow in India

New Delhi, Jan 12 : Union Minister Nitin Gadkari on Tuesday launched the ‘Khadi Prakritik Paint’ here and said that bulk utilisation of cow dung will ensure monetory gains for farmers and put a check on cow slaughter in the country.

He made the remarks while launching the Khadi Prakritik Pain along with Union Minister for Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying, Giriraj Singh.

Speaking on the occasion, Gadkari said, “The innovative Khadi Prakritik Paint has the potential of turning into a Rs 6,000 crore market that could revolutionalise the agro-based economy of the country.”

He said that at least five crore new jobs will be created in the MSME sector and the export of Indian MSMEs will be increased from current 48 per cent to 60 per cent in order to achieve the target of $5 trillion dollar economy.

“Very soon a policy will be framed for sharing the technical knowhow of Khadi Prakritik Paint to maximum number of people in India,” he said, adding that Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC) will provide technical training to new entrepreneurs who could benefit by manufacturing cow dung paint.

He said that thousands of Prakritik paint manufacturing units can be set up across the country that will give a big boost to the country’s agro-based economy.

Gadkari said bulk utilisation of cow dung will ensure monetary gains for farmers and will also desist them from selling cows in the market.

“This will also put a check on cow slaughter. We will be able to stop cow slaughter through economy,” he said.

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Cities

Minimum temperature to fall 3-4 degree over NW India

The Met Department also confirmed that there will be “no significant change in minimum temperatures over rest parts of the country during next 3-4 days”.

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Cold Winter Weather

New Delhi, Jan 10 : Minimum temperature is very likely to fall gradually by three-four degree Celsius during next three-four days, causing isolated cold wave conditions over Punjab, Haryana, Chandigarh, Delhi and north Rajasthan on January 12 and 13, the IMD said on Sunday.

Prevalence of dry north or northwesterly winds over most parts of northwest India is learnt to be the reason behind the temperature fall, said India Meteorological Department (IMD) in its latest weather summary report.

As per the IMD, strong surface winds with 15-25 kmph speed are very likely over the plains of northwest India during next three days.

“Gradual fall in minimum temperatures by 3-4 degree Celsius very likely over most parts of northwest India during next 3-4 days and rise by 2-3 degree Celsius during subsequent 2-3 days over the same region. Fall in minimum temperature by 3-5 degree Celsius over most parts of central and east India during next 3-4 days and by 2-3 degree Celsius over west India during next 2-3 days and no significant change thereafter,” the IMD forecast.

The Met Department also confirmed that there will be “no significant change in minimum temperatures over rest parts of the country during next 3-4 days”.

Meanwhile, shallow to moderate fog in isolated pockets is very likely over Telangana, Odisha and sub-Himalayan West Bengal and Sikkim on January 11, over Jharkhand on January 11-12 and over northeast India during next 5 days.

Under the influence of the cyclonic circulation over equatorial Indian Ocean and adjoining central parts of South Bay of Bengal up to mid tropospheric levels, fairly widespread to widespread rainfall with moderate thunderstorm and lightning is very likely over Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Lakshadweep during next three days, the IMD said.

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Cities

Delhi gets rains for 3rd day on the trot

On Friday, the mercury plummeted to 1.1 degrees Celsius, the lowest in 15 years, and “very dense” fog lowered visibility to “zero” metres.

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Monsoon Rainfall

New Delhi, Jan 5 : Sporadic rains lashed the national capital for the third consecutive day on Tuesday, even as the minimum temperature rose to 13.2 degrees Celsius, six notches more than normal, the India Meteorological Department said.

The Safdarjung Observatory, which provides representative data for the city, recorded 4.7 mm rainfall between 8:30 am on Monday and 8:30 am on Tuesday.

The weather stations at Palam, Lodhi Road, Ayanagar and Ridge recorded 12 mm and 4.8 mm, 8.9 mm and 6.2 mm rainfall, respectively, during the period.

The minimum temperature rose to 13.2 degrees Celsius as a result of cloud cover.

Clouds trap some of the outgoing infrared radiation and radiate it back downward, warming the ground.

The weather department said Delhi may witness light to moderate rain, and thunderstorms with winds gusting up to 30 kmph during the day. A hailstorm is also predicted in parts of the capital.

The rains, under the influence of a strong Western Disturbance, come on the back of a ‘severe” cold wave that gripped Delhi in the run-up to the New Year.

On Friday, the mercury plummeted to 1.1 degrees Celsius, the lowest in 15 years, and “very dense” fog lowered visibility to “zero” metres.

On Sunday, intense rains, thunder and lightning lashed the city. The Safdarjung Observatory recorded 39.9 mm rainfall between 8:30 am on Saturday and 2:30 pm on Sunday.

The WD is causing widespread snowfall in the hills. Once it withdraws, the mercury will fall again to 4 to 5 degrees Celsius, the official said.

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