Thursday, December 9, 2010

Sidcul amends rules for logistics hubs


The bidding process for the development of two logistics hubs in Uttarakhand, which had hit the roadblock last year, has been amended with the government deciding to go for profit sharing formula and lowering the land premium considerably.

With the development of key industrials estates of Haridwar and Pantnagar, the State Infrastructure and Industrial Development Corporation of Uttarakhand Limited (Sidcul) had chalked out plans to provide logistic support and comforts to the industries through these two proposed hubs. For this purpose, about 10 bids were received by Sidcul.

However, the Sidcul board, comprising top government officials, expressed reservations over certain clauses due to which the bidding process did not make any headway. Some of these companies wanted to make upfront charges in a staggered manner by adopting annuity model. However, this was not accepted by the board.

Besides, all the 10 bidders, who were selected through technical bidding process, also wanted some concessions because they found the land premium to be quite high. “We have adopted the middle path to suit both the government as well as the developers,” said a government official.

Under the new formula, the bidders will be offered land at a reserve price aroundRs 1200 per sq metre at the integrated industrial estates (IIEs) of Haridwar and Pantnagar against the current land premium of Rs 3,800 and Rs 4,500 per sq metre. Besides, the government has also decided to take two per cent of the total profit earned. In addition to this, a land rent of Rs 5 per sq metre will also be charged.

“We have now invited financial bids to complete the process. Some of the parties are also seeking more time. We hope to complete entire process shortly,” the official added.

Sidcul, the nodal agency for industrial development in the hill state, had decided to set up two modern logistic/transport hubs having facilities like warehouse, truck parking, dormitories and 24 hour canteen/restaurant, fuel station, service centres, office complexes for service providers and hotels. An investment of Rs 50 crore is proposed in the two logistic hubs.

But the demand from industries was growing for logistic hubs mainly for the comfort of businessmen and industrialists visiting the two places.

Sidcul has also mandated IL&FS Ltd to undertake comprehensive process, management leading to appointment of developers who will implement the projects on the Public Private Partnership model.


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Tuesday, November 2, 2010

The central government has asserted a 135 km workout of the Ganga river from Gaumukh to Uttarkashi in Uttarakhand an eco-sensitive regularize, Environment and Forests Minister Jairam Ramesh said on Tuesday.

The decision was taken in the Soul Ganga River Sink Permission (NGRBA) breakfast chaired by Bloom Minister Manmohan Singh Weekday.

The NGRBA gave in principle support under cut (3) of the Surround Extortion Act (EPA) of 1986 to declare the 135 km stretch from Gaumukh to Uttarkashi as eco-sensitive separate," said Ramesh.

The NGRBA is a planning, finance, monitoring and coordinating embody of the bifocal governing and the states. The objective of the NGRBA is to check pollution and conserves the Ganga through encompassing planning and management.

The NGRBA legal a resolution to desert terzetto hydel country projects - Loharinag Pala, Bhairon Ghati, and Pala Maneri - in Uttarakhand," he said.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

'We need an Aamir to promote a Peepli Live'


Debutante director Bela Negi has used real villagers from Uttarakhand, who constitute for 95 per cent of the total cast, for her film Daayan Ya Baayan. Only three actors including Deepak Dobriyal, who plays the lead, were flown in from Mumbai to the sleepy village of Chaukori in Kumaon, Uttarakhand.

Upset about the lack of promotion for her film, the FTII graduate says, “We need more Aamir’s to promote small-budget films like Peepli Live, which have potential. While Anusha’s (Rizvi) film was heavily and creatively promoted, my film is on the other side of the marketing spectrum, with no promotion.

”Though Negi’s film promos have been ready for a long time, they were never put on air and she wasn’t even informed that the film is releasing this Friday (October 29). “Producer Sunil Doshi didn’t communicate the release date. I got to know a week ago, else I would have begun promotions from my side,” says the director, whose film will only be released in Mumbai and Delhi. She is unsure about its release in Bengaluru and Kolkata and hopes the film will have a life after release and go to festivals.

Talking about the film, the director says there were no acting workshops held separately for the villagers due to budget and time constraints. The crew created an informal set-up so that they were not conscious in front of the camera. “Instead of being behind the camera , I would chat with them during the shot, while staying outside the frame and give them cues. They took to acting very naturally,” says Negi who lived with them in huts during the shoot.

The film is about a guy who goes back from Mumbai to his village to settle there. He becomes a laughing stock in the village until entry in a television show wins him a car. This elevates his status in the village. Deepak Dobriyal, who plays the central character, says, “My character realises the car is a white elephant that creates a mess in his life. This realisation takes him on a long journey because his only ardent fan, his son, loses respect for him.”


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Saturday, October 23, 2010

Snow fall in Uttarakhand Hills


Higher hills in Uttarakhand conventional snowfall heralding frigorific conditions in the hill state which prompted fill to take aid to woollens.

The Met Office said that garhwal Range, including Badrinath and Kerdarnath shrines, had snowing since finish dark piece rains accompanied by gusty winds lashed bunk hills.

The rains occurred due to a western disturbance, it said forecasting many showers in parts of Uttarakhand tomorrow.
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Friday, October 22, 2010

GAIL starts building Karanpur to Rudrapur-Pantnagar Pipeline


State gas utility Gail India today announced it began construction of its natural gas pipeline Karanpur-Moradabad-Kashipur-Rudrapur-Pantnagar.

The pipeline is 182 km long Karanpur-Moradabad-Kashipur-Rudrapur-Pantnagar, said a company press release here.

The pipeline will tap from the cutoff of 24-inch pipeline Auraiya, Dadri Sahajahanpur-Babrala by Gail at Rudrapur to Karanpur-Pantnagar.

"The estimated investment for the project is RS 250 crore," he said. The design capacity of the pipeline will be 2.5 million cubic meters per day.

The pipeline will cross Badayuni Mora and the districts of Uttar Pradesh and Udham Singh Nagar in Uttarakhand.

"The pipeline will supply gas to the plant near Kashipur in Uttarakhand and other industrial customers in Moradabad, Kashipur and Rudrapur and gas distribution in Moradabad town,"he said.

The line will be built in two phases. In Phase I of the project, 101 km of pipelines, is traced from Karanpur Kashipur.

The first phase is expected to be completed in January 2011, an estimated investment of Rs 196 crore.

In Phase II of the project, 58 km of the pipeline is drawn from the Pantnagar-Rudrapur-Kashipur."This phase of the project will involve an estimated investment of Rs 56 crore. The entire project is targeted to be completed by January 2012,"the statement added.

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Friday, October 15, 2010

In Uttarakhand, India-Russia begin joint Military Drills


NEW DELHI: India and Russia on Friday revived a joint military exercise series focusing on counter-terrorism operations, with a Russian Army contingent arriving at Chaubattia in Uttarakhand for the 10-day training.

The 'Indra-2010' will formally kick-start from tomorrow and go on till October 12 when battalion-sized troops will test their skills in anti-insurgency operations at the military station there, Defence Ministry officials said here. The exercise will comprise infantry troops from both the armies, who would work out insurgency and terrorism situations apart from planning and executing operations to counter these threat scenarios, particularly in a mountainous terrain, they said.

Other elements from both the armies include observers, air elements and representatives from the defence ministries of both countries. The Russian team included 257 personnel and the Indian side is represented by an infantry battalion.

Indra-2010 is intended to enhance defence cooperation and military-to-military relations between the two armies, they said. The first of the 'Indra' exercise series was conducted in India in October 2005 and the second was held in Russia in 2007. Since then the two armies have not held an exercise under the series for the past three years.

The Indo-Russian Army exercise comes soon after an inter-governmental commission for military and technical cooperation headed by the Defence Ministers of both the countries meeting in Delhi last week, when the Indra-series joint training was cited as an example of the growing relations between the two sides.

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Thursday, October 14, 2010

Uttarakhand bans Strike for next 6 Months


Dehradun, Oct 14 (PTI) Still reeling under the impact of devastating landslides and floods, the Uttarakhand government has banned strikes for next six months in departments providing essential services.

The government departments, state government undertakings and corporations have been banned from holding strikes for the next six months, officials said today.

The step has been taken in view of natural disasters that struck different parts of the state last month.

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Saturday, October 2, 2010

Police firing on Uttarakhand activists 1994


Hearing in three CBI cases in connection with police firing on unarmed Uttarakhand activists in 1994 has been deferred till November 16 as the special court has not been yet constituted, CBI officials said today.

Nine police officials, including three then Station House Officers (SHO), are facing charges of fabricating police records after implicating fake cases against Uttarakhand activists.

The activists, part of the agitation for separate state of Uttarakhand, were going to Delhi to stage a dharna at Raj Ghat on Gandhi Jayanti when police allegedly fired on them in the night of October 1, 1994.

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Monday, September 27, 2010

Uttarakhand Landslides leave 3000 Tourists Stranded in Uttarkashi


Landslides triggered by flashfloods have left approximately three thousand tourists stranded in Uttarakhand’s Uttarkashi District.

The tourists from various states were on their way to "Char dham yatra" to the popular pilgrimage of Badrinath, Kedarnath, Gangotri and Yamunotri.

The tourists said that they do not have enough food, drinking water and money left with them.

“We are stuck here for the last four to five days. There is no facility for food and we are in a lot of trouble. We have spent all our money. The train ticket has also been cancelled. We are wondering how will we go back home,” said Ram Swaroop, a tourist.

Uttarakhand government Officials have indicated that they are making arrangements for food.
“In our district, we have made teams for every block, in which we have taken the support of everyone. Along with the revenue staff, we have also included village heads and other well-known local volunteers of NGOs (Non-Governmental Organisation),” said Hem Lata Dodiyal, District Magistrate, Uttarkashi.

“This is because we are worried about the fact that if the road does not open in the next two to three days, then there may be a fear of food shortage. So, we have arranged for that before hand,” she added.

Heavy rains and landslides in the Uttaranchal region have damaged the roads severely, disconnecting the routes to nearby cities and towns.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Dhoni nominated as Uttarakhand's first wildlife warden


DEHRADUN: India cricket captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni was on Sunday nominated as Uttarakhand's first honorary wildlife warden as part of the hill state's tiger conservation campaign.

An announcement to this effect was made by Chief Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank following a meeting with the cricketer, an official release said.

Nishank also declared Dhoni as the brand ambassador of the save tiger campaign in the state which houses two major national parks -- Jim Corbett and Rajaji, which are natural habitats for tigers.

Later Dhoni welcomed the move and thanked Chief Minister in this regard. "I am lending my support to the Aircel-NDTV 'Save our Tigers' campaign.

"Uttarakhand has some of the best forests in India. I have come specially to Dehradun to request the Chief Minister to do whatever is in his capacity to ensure a safe environment for tigers and to commend him on the work done on the tiger protection," Dhoni said.

"I look forward to the corridor of Corbett-Rajaji being widened and strengthened at the earliest. I am delighted to accept the honorary wildlife warden post which has been offered to me by the Uttarakhand Chief Minister," he added.

Earlier, Dhoni handed over a charter of demands 'tiger agenda' listing steps which should be taken for the protection of the tigers especially in Jim Corbett National Park of the state.

The tiger agenda has demanded that vast area of Jim Corbett Park, Ramnagar and Terai forests should be brought under the jurisdiction of a single Field Director.

Besides, the encroachments along the banks of Gola and Kosi rivers in Ramnagar and border areas of Jim Corbett and Rajaji Parks should be removed in order to protect wildlife.

The agenda has also demanded to rehabilitate villagers of Khand village on the periphery of Rajaji Park to elsewhere and raising a special tiger protection force in the state.

During the meeting, Nishank apprised Dhoni of various steps taken by the state government for protection of wildlife and particularly tigers. He said according to the latest statistics, there are 200 tigers in the state including 164 in Corbett National Park alone.

Stating that density of tigers in Corbett National Park is just double against the national average, Nishank said there is one tiger found in an area of five square kilometre in Corbett Park.

Besides, Nishank said the mortality rate of tigers in Uttarakhand is half as compared to the national average.

Regarding setting up of special tiger protection force, the Chief Minister said that the state government has already issued a notification in this regard.

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Monday, September 6, 2010

8000 pilgrims stranded in Uttarakhand


DEHRADUN: Over 8,000 pilgrims and tourists on the Chardham Yatra are stranded following heavy downpour and landslides on Rishikesh-Badrinath and Rishikesh-Gangotri national highways in Chamoli district of Uttarakhand since Friday.

Reports reaching Dehradun said yatris on 280km-long Rishikesh-Badrinath highway are stranded after a number of landslides, including one at Shivpuri and another at Rudraprayag, damaged the road. Efforts are on to clear the road but inclement weather is hampering work.

The 300km-long Rishikesh-Gangotri national highway is also blocked after landslips and rock-falls near Bhatwari town.

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Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Uttarakhand to set up university at Tehri


Dehradun: The state government has decided to set up an affiliating University at Tehri which would give affiliation to the colleges and institutes that have come out of the fold of the Hemwati Nandan Bahuguna (HNB) Garhwal University after it was made a Central university.
Garhwal University There are 193 self financed educational institutions affiliated to the HNB Garhwal University. The rules of the Central University say that it cannot give affiliations to such institutes.

In a meeting of the Uttarakhand cabinet, it was decided to convert the Badshahithaul campus of the Garhwal University at Tehri into the affiliating university which would be known as Pandit Deen Dayal Upadhyay Uttarakhand University.

Uttaranchal Chief Secretary NS Napalchyal said that a letter is being sent to the central government seeking back the Badshahithaul campus to the state so that the affiliating university can be set up there.

As of now, the new university would function from Dehradun and would be shifted to Tehri when the facilities are fully set up. The legislation for the setting up of the University would be presented in the next session of the State Assembly.

The government has also cleared the setting up of a unit of the Vansthali Vidyapeeth in the state in view of the large number of girl students that apply for admission to this university in Rajasthan.


Thursday, July 29, 2010

Landslides Block Gangotri Highway


Dehra Dun: Landslides triggered by heavy rains blocked the Rishikesh-Gangotri national highway in Uttarkashi today, leaving hundreds of pilgrims stranded on both sides.

The landslides struck the NH-108 at Nalupani area, officials said in Dehradun.

The personnel of the state police and Border Road Organisation have been pressed into service to clear the debris and open the road for vehicular traffic, they said.

Uttarkashi has been receiving heavy rains for the past few days. A devotee was washed away in the swollen Bhagirathi river on the way to Gaumukh from Gangotri when a temporary bridge collapsed due to heavy rains three days ago.


Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Reduce tourist vehicles to Corbett National Park


India best tiger reserve Corbett National Park has caused another face-off between Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh and Uttaranchal Chief Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal. For better conservation of tigers, Jairam Ramesh wants Pokhriyal to reduce the inflow of tourist vehicles into the Corbett National Park. More than two lakh tourists visited the National Park in the past year with a daily average of 400 through four tourist gates.

Corbett National Park The high inflow of tourists, according to Ramesh, has caused higher air and noise pollution inside the park, a probable cause for stress to tigers. The noise created by vehicular movement is said to be a reason for poor breeding of tigers.

“It had happened in Sariska,” said a senior scientist with Dehradun-based Wildlife Institute of India, giving high tourist inflow as a possible reason for poor breeding of tigers in Sariska before they vanished in 2004.

Ramesh had also sounded a similar caution for Corbett, while asking the Chief Minister to reduce the number of vehicles allowed inside the park. Data with National Tiger Conservation Authority indicates that tourist influx inside the park has increased because of its close proximity with Delhi.

Uttaranchal government, however, contended that the tourists being allowed inside the parks were within the permissible limits and no fresh restrictions can be imposed. “Livelihood of a large number of locals is dependent on tourists... We cannot impose unrealistic restrictions just because the Centre wants it,” said Anil Baluni, deputy advisor with the state environment advisory committee.

The environment minister had earlier asked the state government to restrict construction of resorts in and around Corbett. Ramesh has opposed construction of hydel projects in the upper reaches of Ganga river basin and wants to declare the 130-km stretch of Bhagirathi river in the state as ecologically sensitive. Ministry panels have also opposed hydel projects on Gori Ganga and Mandakini rivers in the state.


Friday, June 25, 2010

Uttarakhand Government to increase DA


Dehra Dun, Jun 25, 2010: Uttarakhand government has decided to increase the Dearness Allowance (DA) of the employees of various corporations by 8 percent to 35 percent, official sources said today.

Chief Minister Ramesh Pokhariyal Nishank took the decision to increase the DA after a delegation of corporation employees had met him yesterday with a request in this regard.

The employees working in various state government-run corporations are currently getting DA at the rate of 27 percent, they said.

The Uttarakhand state government had recently increased the DA of its employees to 35 percent.


Kumaun University Nainital has declared the Result


Kumaun University, Nainital has announced the results of MA-I, 2010. The results is available on the official websites of the Kumaoun University, Nainital. Please check result at

MA-Part I resutls is available on the official website of Kumaun University, Nainital, Uttaranchal.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Uttarakhand Annual Plan 2010-11 Finalized


The Annual Plan outlay for Uttarakhand for the year 2010-11 was finalised at a meeting, here today, between Deputy Chairman Planning Commission, Shri Montek Singh Ahluwalia and Chief Minister of Uttarakhand Shri Ramesh Pokhriyal. The Annual Plan size was agreed at Rs.6800 crores.

Mr. Ahluwalia congratulated the State Government on successful completion of Maha Kumbh Mela. He said this historical event which requires major infrastructure development and organizational skills has been conducted in a manner that has been widely appreciated. Efforts to restore the pristine character of the sacred Ganga River as well as the ancient city of Haridwar, must be continued. He Stated that the centre and the State should work together to implement the on-going projects of the Ganga Action Plan.

He said, it is commendable that Uttarakhand is among the three special category States which have been reorganized by the TFC for prudent fiscal management, despite non-cost disabilities, in recognition of which a special performance grant of Rs.1000 crores has been provided by the TFC. Therefore, the State Government must reinforce this good track record and ensure that the fiscal deficit is brought down to 3 per cent and its total debt to 30 per cent of GSDP as early as possible.

Appreciating the efforts to place the State on sound economic path, Mr Ahluwalia said that Uttaranchal has great potential in terms of natural resources which should be harnessed to generate sustainable growth and income opportunities for the people. The State has registered economic growth with GSDP averaging over 9 per cent in both the Tenth Plan and the completed years of the Eleventh Plan. The State has estimated that, to achieve growth envisaged by the Thirteenth Finance Commission, it would require investment of approximately Rs.75,000 crore of which Rs.40,000 crore must come from private sources. Therefore it is critical that the State Government puts in place policies that enable private investment of this magnitude to materialise.

In the farm sector, the average growth rate of agriculture has been less than 1 per cent in the first two years of the Eleventh Plan. Despite large riverine network and high rainfall, only 44 per cent of the arable area is under irrigation. The poverty level is also high at nearly 40 per cent in 2004-05 and compares poorly with other hill States. It points to a need to place great emphasis on livelihood programmes, and improvement of farm productivity and income opportunities in rural areas.

There is also an uneven development between the hill districts and the plain districts of the State, with much of the growth concentrated in the latter. Bharat Nirman and other flagship programmes as well as NABARD funded programmes should be used to bridge this gap. Literacy rates in the State have shown big improvement according to 2001 census, but yet remain relatively low. The gap between female and male literacy is also quite high and it appears to be more serious in certain districts.

Briefing the Commission on the development strategy, the Chief Minister said that thrust areas of Annual Plan would be physical infrastructure including roads, bridges, power projects and drinking water. Fallow land would be brought under cultivation in hill areas for growing horticulture, herbal and organic agriculture crops. Emphasis will be on water conservations and enhancing livelihood options. Public private partnership would be encouraged in infrastructure both physical and social. He said that Uttarakhand Government has launched new programme with the objective of achieving balanced regional development and providing basic infrastructure in all neglected areas.

He said efforts are on to further improve tourism related infrastructure and to get education hub status to the State. He wanted Planning Commission’s help in restoring industrial package benefit to the State.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Transfer UP's share from Tehri to Uttarakhand


Faced with acute shortage of power, the Uttarakhand government has now set its eyes on the mega 2,400 Mw Tehri hydel project asking the Centre to transfer the 25 per cent share of Uttar Pradesh in the dam to the hill state.

During his meeting with Union Power Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde in New Delhi Chief Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank said since the Tehri project lied in Uttarakhand, the equity of Uttar Pradesh should be transferred to UttarakhanTehri Dam in Uttaranchal Indiad.
Last year also, the state government sent a letter in this regard to the Centre seeking the transfer of Uttar Pradesh’s share in Tehri to Uttarakhand.

Under the provision of the Uttar Pradesh Reorganisation Act 2000, there is clause under section 47(3), under which investments made before the creation of Uttarakhand should go to the state where the project is located.

Significantly, Uttar Pradesh is 25 per cent partner of Tehri project where the centre’s share is 75 per cent.
In case, the Uttar Pradesh’s equity is transferred, Uttarakhand would get nearly 250 Mw of additional power since the Tehri dam has the current capacity of producing 1,000 Mw which has been constructed with a total investment of nearly Rs 9,000-10,000 crore. Uttarakhand currently gets 12.5 percent of free power from Tehri dam.

Tehri dam comprises a 260.5 high earth and rock-fill dam which is one of the highest in the world. Under the first phase, all the four turbines (250 Mw each) of the project are in operation. Besides providing much needed power to the northern grid, the project has started imparting benefits of additional irrigation facility to 2.70 lakh hectares of land. It is also providing drinking water for 40 lakhs people in Delhi and 30 lakh people in Uttar Pradesh.

In the second and third phases, the Tehri Hydro Development Corporation (THDC) is implementing 400 Mw Koteshwar dam and 1,000 Mw Tehri pump storage (PSP) plant.
The power demand in Uttarakhand is growing by 10 to 15 percent every year which has now touched to 27-28 million units this year. After failing to make headway in the hydro sector despite its tremendous potential, the government is exploring various new options to increase power in the state.


Sunday, May 16, 2010

Chardham Yatra for Safety of Pilgrims


Sensing trouble owing to a series of low-intensity earthquakes that struck the Uttarakhand hills recently the State government has directed officials to initiate all necessary measures required for the safety of pilgrims before the famed Chardham Yatra (pilgrimage) commences on May 16.

Badrinath Chardham Yatra Incidentally, the Char Dhams fall in the geologically volatile high altitude region of the Uttarakhand Himalayas. This whole region has been categorised as "Zone V" owing to its susceptibility to seismic events. "Char Dhams" or four fabled religious destinations of Hindus are namely Badrinath, Kedarnath, Gangotri and Yamnotri.

Besides, the entire "Char Dhams" circuit owing to its mountainous terrain is also highly prone to road accidents.

"In view of these factors we have directed the officials to initiate all necessary measures required for the safety of thousands of pilgrims who will be visiting the hallowed Char Dhams in the next six months," said Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Disaster Management Khajan Das.

He informed that besides the ex-gratia fund meant for victims of road accidents and natural disasters the Department of Disaster Management has already released to the districts, it (Department of Disaster Management) has also been directed to immediately release an extra fund of Rs 1 crore to the District Magistrates.

"Besides, in view of a series of low-intensity earthquakes that struck the region recently the Department of Disaster Management and district authorities have also been put on alert to deal with any such event if it occurs during the Yatra period," he said.

Saying that in that connection rescue and relief centres are active in eight districts he said the officials concerned "have been directed to expedite the process of setting up similar centres in other five districts as well, so that immediate relief could be provided to affected people in case earthquakes or such disasters strike the Chardham circuits in the coming months.

"Besides, equipment required to carry out rescue and relief operations have also been made available at the Tehsil level as well," Das said.


Thursday, May 6, 2010

Uttarakhand's Scientists use Cow Urine for Apiculture


Nainital (Uttarakhand), May 6 (ANI): Apiculturists in Uttarakhand are making use of cow urine to prevent bees from contacting microbial diseases during the rearing process.

Researchers at the Govind Ballabh Pant University of Agriculture and Technology in Pantnagar have taken to using cow urine extensively while breeding honeybees.

"This is proving to be a sure-shot treatment for the honeybee rearing. Also, when one can get four percent increase in profits by the use of cow urine, what else does anyone want? Honeybee helps in the production and from the last two years, their population had decreased. Despite using medicines and pesticides, there was no increase in their population. The honeybee keepers are now totally depending upon cow urine," said Ruchira Tiwari, a researcher at the Govind Vallabh Agricultural University.

In the course of rearing, bees are kept in fixed-frame boxes for better commercial extraction of honey, which makes them susceptible to microbial diseases during the process.

The medicines used for killing the microbes have had a bad effect on the production of larvae but cow urine does not have such side-effects.

"Medicines used to cost us a lot. The expenditure of medicines and other pesticides was very high. Cow urine is free and further, there is an increase in profit by three to four percent," said Puran Chandra Joshi, a beekeeper.

An average bee colony yields about 10-15 kilograms of honey, which is produced by 20,000 to 60,000 bees.

Bees being fast breeders lay as many as 800 to 3,000 eggs daily, which help breeders multiply their flock and yield without any expenditure. They also get beeswax as an additional by-product.

Honey has numerous uses such as medicine, food and an ingredient in various compounds. It is also an excellent medium for vitamins.


Monday, May 3, 2010

Badri-Kedar University to come up in Himalayas


Kotdwar (Uttarakhand), May 3 (PTI) Sri Badrinath - Kedarnath temple committee, responsible for the management of two famous Hindu shrines, will set up an university here.

A proposal in this regard was passed by the temple committee unanimously in a recent meeting, Temple Committee Chairman Anusuiya Prasad Bhatt today said, adding the proposal has been sent to the Uttarakhand government for its approval.

The University, being christened as Badri-Kedar University, would be nestled in the Garhwal Himalayas and impart degrees in various religious subjects like Vedas, Purans, Brahm Nirupan, Srishti Vigyan, Adhyatmic Vigyan, Jyotish, Bhakti and Medical Education, Bhatt said.

The varsity will be managed by the temple committee, while talks with experts and educationists were going on to finalize other modalities, including the land and estimated expenditure, he said.


Sunday, April 25, 2010

Save tigers campaign in Uttarakhand


School students in Uttarakhand took out a rally here to create awareness about the dwindling number of tigers in the country and to save the forest areas.

Carrying placards and raising slogans, the students marched through the streets of Ramnagar in the state's Nainital district.

The rally was organised under the aegis of a non-charitable trust, the Corbett Foundation, which is committed to preserving the wildlife in the famed Jim Corbett National Park.

The students also painted their faces with yellow colours with black stripes like that of a tiger.
"We want to convey the message - please save the tigers, which are fast dwindling so that our future generation can see the species. We feel sad that we could not see the dinosaurs, which are now extinct and that is the reason why we want to save the tigers," said Nirmala Panth, a student.

Harender Bargeli, deputy director of Corbett Foundation in Uttaranchal, said that if children are made aware, they could help in conserving the environment and wildlife.

"Our main aim to involve these children was since children are our future, if they are aware and if they take the initiative to save the forest wildlife then we can save many animals like tigers, elephants," said Bargeli.

Poaching and loss of habitat have caused the number of tigers to plunge to an alarming rate in India.

Conservationists say the trade in skin and bones is booming to countries such as China, which has banned the use of tiger parts in medicine but where everything from fur to whiskers to eyeballs to bones, are still used.


Thursday, April 8, 2010

2 lakh compensation to Uttarakhand CRPF Jawans


Uttarakhand Chief Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank today announced a compensation of Rs 2 lakh to family members of CRPF jawans of Uttarakhand who were killed by Naxals at Chhatisgarh. Nishank expressed grief to the family members of all the seven jawans.

According to a list released by the CRPF, those who hailed from Uttar Pradesh were:

Zamurulhasan, Sharvdev Singh, B K Sharma, Brijesh Kumar Tiwari, Rakesh Kumar, Ved Pal, Bhupender Kumar, Awdhesh, Satrajeet Ram, Manak Chandra Sharma, Devender Yadav, Narender Kumar, Khalil Khan, Jamuna Prasad Giri, Sanjay Kumar Jalaon, Manoj Kumar Pandey, Navneet Kumar, Arender Kumar, Virender Singh, Udaj Veer Singh, Suraj Kumar, Vijay Kumar, Mahender Kumar, Tara Singh, Ajit Singh, Ramanand Yadav, Jitender Kumar, Praveen Kumar Raj, Satender Singh Yadav, Ranjeet Kumar Yadav, Dharam Pal Singh, Udai veer Singh, Nahar Singh, Sachin Kumar, Satish Chandra, Rajender Singh Rana, Sushil Kumar, Vinod Kumar, Rajesh Kumar, Nirvesh Kumar,Amit Kumar Singh, Inderjeet Kumar Ram and Shyam Lal.

The six personnel from Uttarakhand were:

Manoj Nogai, Brij Anand, Lalit Kumar, Mahesh Singh, Vinod Pal Singh, Tikam Singh.

Six jawans from Bihar:

Surinder Rai, Prakash Kumar, Jeetu Anand, Bishwanath Raj, Bhutan Yadav and Moti Lal Ram, were killed in the ambush.

K Vijay Kumar, D Shekar, Mohan Rangan from Tamil Nadu, Pradeep Kumar and Sandeep Kumar from Haryana, Loes Xess and Raja Ram Ekka from Chhattisgarh, Sampat Lal and Ram Karan Meena from Rajasthan and Yogeshwar Naik and H K Malik, who were from Orissa, sacrificed their lives during the attack.

Other deceased CRPF personnel are Ali Hasan (Delhi), Amle Sopan (Maharashtra), Shivappa (Karnataka), L K Kalita (Assam), Rajesh K (Kerala), Ashish Kumar Bhagel (West Bengal) and M C M Reddy (Andhra Pradesh), the list said.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

22 Couples enter Wedlock in Haridwar


Twenty-two specially-abled couples entered wedlock at a mass marriage ceremony during the ongoing Maha Kumbh mela in Haridwar.

A voluntary organisation, Narayan Seva Sansthan of Udaipur, conducted the ceremony.
The couples were married as per traditional Hindu rituals. The whole camp was beautifully decorated.

Rohit Sharma, director of Narayan Seva Sansthan, said: "This is for the first time that such a marriageof specially-abled couples is being held during the kumbh mela. We are not only giving them free medical help but also organising marriages for them so that they come to the mainstream society."

The organisers also gifted household items to the newly married couples.
Mass marriages are becoming very popular, especially among the economically backward sections of Indian society.


Thursday, March 25, 2010

Uttarakhand government to clear Ganga of corpses


Ganga won't have to bear the burden of unidentified corpses and carcasses anymore, at least in Rishikesh.

Garhwal commissioner Umakant Panwar has submitted an interim report to the Uttarakhand government, about the state irrigation department's illegal practice of dumping unidentified corpses and carcasses on the banks of the Ganga, a few kilometres downstream from Rishikesh.
Panwar has asked the police to maintain a record of the dead bodies, conduct post-mortem and perform their last rites.The inquiry began on March 3 and it was recently submitted to chief minister Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank.

It all started when Nishank took serious note of a MAIL TODAY report, (Illegal & undignified dumping of the dead' edition dated February 26) and ordered a commissioner- level inquiry.
Once the probe was announced, the police decided to become more active.From March 3, they began maintaining a register at the Laxman Jhula police station in Rishikesh.

Panwar said: " We have recommended proper disposal of the dead bodies. We want the state government to give additional funds to the police for cremating the unidentified bodies at Bir Bhadra Barrage. We cannot take action against the irrigation department staff for lack of evidence."

With this, an illegal practice that is more than three decades old, has ended. Till now, the irrigation department officials have been allegedly dumping the bodies in the river while cleaning the barrage.

The department has placed an iron fence at the barrage, three km from Rishikesh in Uttaranchal, to ' net' the bodies floating in the river. This is to ensure that waste- free water flows into the Chilla powerhouse, located 14 km away.

According to reports, two boatmen used to daily look for corpses at the barrage. They would tie a nylon rope on the bodies and fasten its other end to the boat.

The bodies would then be taken to Malwala Sroath, a cremation ground on the riverbank. But instead of cremating the bodies, the men would tie them to a tree on the riverbank - so that they can't float back to the barrage - and leave them to decay in the water.

The villagers living in and around the controversial dumping site are happy about the government's action.

Chander Mohan Singh Negi, a resident of the nearby Kunao village, said: "Malwala Sroath is being used as a cremation ground by the villagers here. Very often, we had to look for other cremation sites since bodies would be rotting in the river here. Government action has been long overdue."


Thursday, March 18, 2010

Uttarakhand Raises Gender Budget for Women Empowerment


Dehradun, Mar 18: For empowering women, Uttarakhand government has increased the gender budget by nearly Rs 200 crore for 2010-11.

Concerned over the skewed sex ratio in the Uttarakhand state, the government has earmarked Rs 1417.75 crore for gender budget, meant for women empowerment through various schemes.

The allocated amount for 2010-11 is nearly 17.65 percent more than the previous fiscal when it was Rs 1205.04 crore.

For the first time, Rs one crore has been allocated for providing free gas connections to rural women while an equal amount has been provided for employment-oriented plantation of herbs like Harr, Bahera and Trifla.

The Uttaranchal state government has also earmarked Rs 50 lakh for protecting women against domestic violence, while Rs 5 lakh each has been provided for constructing homes for mentally challenged women and promoting widow marriage.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Uttarakhand with Gail set up 2 Power Plants


The Uttarakhand Government today said it was setting up two gas-based plants of 500 Mw each in collaboration the Gas Authority of India (Gail).

Under the plan, both Garhwal and Kumaon regions would have one plant each. “It is our commitment that we will set up two gas-based power plants with the help of GAIL,” said Devendra Bhasin, Chairman of the state media advisory committee. The power through these plants would be used mainly for industrial usages. For this purpose, the Uttarakhand government has already urged the centre to supply 3 million metric standard cubic meter per day of gas to the hill state.

Following recent talks between GAIL Chairman and Managing Director B C Tripathi and Chief Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank here, the government is optimistic that gas pipelines of GAIL would be extended to the state which is facing acute power shortage.

GAIL has agreed to bring gas to Garhwal region from Dadri-Bhatinda pipleline from Saharanpur side. This pipeline can be extended to Haridwar where gas-based power plants can also be established. Similarly, the GAIL’s gas project via Karanpur and Moradabad in Uttar Pradesh to the two industrial towns of Rudrapur and Kashipur is likely to give a tremendous boost to hundreds of existing industries in Kumaon region which are facing power shortage.

The government also sees vast scope for private developers to set up such plants in both Garhwal and Kumaon region.

This would also give further flip to industrialization in the region as vast notified industrial land is still available there.

The power demand in the state, which is presently hovering around 26 to 27 million units, is likely to grow by 10 to 15 per cent every year due to urbanization and industrialization in the state.

The State Infrastructure and Industrial Development Corporation of Uttarankhand, a state government enterprise, which has developed several industrial estates, had signed an agreement with GAIL to give a push to gas-based energy projects.


Monday, March 1, 2010

उत्तराखंड में होली की अनूठी परंपरा


उत्तराखंड के ग्रामीण अंचलों में तबले, मंजीरे और हारमोनियम के सुर में मनाया जाने वाला परंपरागत होलिकोत्सव हर किसी को बरबस अपनी ओर खींच ही लेता है.

सांस्कृतिक रूप से समृद्ध एवं सजग माने जाने वाले अल्मोड़ा में तो सांझ ढलते ही होल्यारों की महफिलें सज जाती हैं. इसमें हर उम्र के लोग शामिल होते हैं. युवक, युवतियों और वृद्ध सभी को होली के गूंजते गानों में सराबोर देखा जा सकता है.

लगभग यही दशा कुमाऊं मंडल के अधिकांश क्षेत्रों की होती है. नैनीताल और चंपावत में तबले की थाप, मंजीरे की खनखन और हारमोनियम के मधुर सुरों पर जब 'ऐसे चटक रंग डारो कन्हैया' गाते हैं, तो सभी झूम उठते हैं.

तिहाई पूरा होते ही लगता है कि राग-विहाग की ख़ूबसूरत बंदिश ख़त्म हो गई है. लेकिन तभी होली में भाग लगाने वाले होल्यारों के मुक्त कंठ से भाग लगाते ही तबले पर चांचर का ठेका अभी शुरू नहीं हुआ कि 'होरी' फिर से शबाब पर लौट आती है.

पूरी रात इस मस्ती में गुजर जाती है और इस बीच पता नहीं चलता कि भोर कब हुई.

बैठकी होली की उमंग

कुमाऊंनी होली के दो रूप प्रचलित हैं-बैठकी होली और खड़ी होली.

बैठकी होली यहाँ पौष माह से शुरू होकर फाल्गुन तक गाई जाती है. पौष से बसंत पंचमी तक अध्यात्मिक बसंत, पंचमी से शिवरात्रि तक अर्ध श्रृंगारिक और उसके बाद श्रृंगार रस में डूबी होलियाँ गाई जाती हैं. इनमें भक्ति, वैराग्य, विरह, कृष्ण-गोपियों की हंसी-ठिठोली, प्रेमी प्रेमिका की अनबन, देवर-भाभी की छेड़छाड़ सभी रस मिलते हैं.

इस होली में वात्सल्य, श्रृंगार, भक्ति रस एक साथ मौजूद हैं.

संस्कृति प्रेमी एवं युग मंच संस्था चलाने वाले जुहूर आलम कहते हैं कि बैठकी होली जैसे त्योहार को एक गरिमा देती है.

होली मर्मज्ञ एवं संस्कृतिकर्मी रहे गिरीश तिवारी 'गिर्दा' कहते हैं, ‘‘बैठकी होली अपने समृद्ध लोकसंगीत की वजह से यहाँ की संस्कृति में रच बस गई है. यह लोकगीत न्योली जैसे पारंपरिक लोकगीतों से भिन्न है. इसकी भाषा कुमाऊंनी होकर ब्रज है. सभी बंदिशें राग रागनियों में गाई जाती है. यह खांटी का शास्त्रीय गायन है.’’

एकल और समूह गायन

इस गाने का ढब निराला ही है. इसे समूह में गाया जाता है. लेकिन यह तो सामूहिक गायन है ही शास्त्रीय होली की तरह एकल गायन. महफ़िल में मौजूद कोई भी व्यक्ति बंदिश का मुखड़ा गा सकता है जिसे स्थानीय भाषा में भाग लगाना कहते हैं .

गीत एवं नाट्य प्रभाग, भारत सरकार के पूर्व निदेशक प्रेम मटियानी के अनुसार, ‘‘यह कदरदान और कलाकार दोनों का मंच है. इस लोक विधा ने हिन्दुस्तानी संगीत को समृद्ध करने के साथ-साथ एक नई समझ भी दी है.’’

खड़ी होली दिन में ढोल-मंजीरों के साथ गोल घेरे में पग संचालन और भाव प्रदर्शन के साथ गाई जाती है. तो रात में यही होली बैठकर गाई जाती है.

शिवरात्रि से होलिकाअष्टमी तक बिना रंग के ही होली गाई जाती है.

होलिका अष्टमी को मंदिरों में आंवला एकादशी को गाँव मोहल्ले के निर्धारित स्थान पर चीर बंधन होता है और रंग डाला जाता है.

होली का उत्साह

बसंत पंचमी होली का नमूना देखें. बसंत पंचमी में "नवल बसंत सखी, ऋतुराज कहायो पुष्पकली सब फूलन लागी फूलहि फूल सुहायो" के साथ शिवरात्रि में "जय जय शिवशंकर योगी, नृत्य करत प्रभु डमरू बजावत बावन धूनी रमायो" गाकर यह होली मनाते हैं.

उत्तराखंड में गंगोलीहाट, लोहाघाट, चंपावत, पिथौरागढ़ एवं नैनीताल बैठकी होली के गढ़ माने जाते हैं. यहां के लोग मैदानी क्षेत्रों में जहाँ-जहाँ गए, इस परंपरा का प्रसार होता गया.

आधुनिक दौर में जब परंपरागत संस्कृति का क्षय हो रहा है तो वहीं कुमाऊं अंचल की होली में मौजूद परंपरा और शास्त्रीय राग-रागनियों में डूबी होली को आमजन की होली बनता देख सुकून दिलाता है.

Source: BBC.CO.UK