This report discusses a few of the significant issues in the Jhelum and Chenab basin two of the main tributaries of the Indus and provides the readers a snapshot of the issues confronting the water resources development in the basins. On the basis of these factors, the health and status of the Jhelum and Chenab basins is determined using an assessment matrix providing qualitative weights to each of the indicators and influencing factors to arrive at the overall score of the river categorizing a riverscape as healthy, sick and dying.
Guest Blog by: Chicu Lokgariwar
It’s a girl! And another girl!
On March 20 2017, the High Court of Uttarakhand in an unforeseen move, bestowed ‘legal personhood’ on the Ganga and the Yamuna. Ten days later, as people were still trying to understand the implications of this order, the Court declared the glaciers, lakes, and wetlands of these basins as legal persons. What does this mean exactly?
The decree: As per an order passed on 20th March 2017, while ruling on a public interest litigation filed by Mohammed Salim against the State of Uttarakhand, the High Court has declared the entire length of the Ganga and the Yamuna, including their tributaries to be juristic persons.
The order states, ‘..the Rivers Ganga and Yamuna, all their tributaries, streams, every natural water flowing with flow continuously or intermittently of these rivers, are declared as juristic/legal persons/living entities having the status of a legal person with all corresponding rights, duties and liabilities of a living person in order to preserve and conserve river Ganga and Yamuna.’
Tamil Nadu Experts suggest six ways to revive dying Madurai’s rivers According to a paper entitled Future Proofing Indian Cities: Towards an approach to spatial and social analysis for sustainable development of Madurai by Jayaraj Sundaresan Development Planning Unit, University College London J. Kanagavalli DHAN Foundation, Madurai their documentation has revealed the significant role of Kruthumal River in the historic, cultural, ecological and economic growth of Madurai. Centuries ago, Madurai city developed as a small urban settlement on the banks between the rivers Kruthumal and Vaigai. Appearing in epics and sacred texts such as Srimad Bhagavatham and Narayaneeyam, Kruthumal has significant presence in the written history of Madurai. It was also known as Narayana Cauvery. It supplied water to the Ahazhi (moat) around the Tirumalai Nayakkar palace in Madurai. The paper gave six methods to look after Vaigai and Kruthumal Rivers in Madurai. Looking at the condition of the rivers one feels it is hopeless, but there is hope if together with the government, something is done to control the destruction of the river, by law. And with organizations like DHAN Madurai can hope for a clean Vaigai in the future.
“Save & Grow” FAO supports SRI A new FAO book out on 18 Jan.16 takes a close look at how the world’s major cereals maize, rice and wheat can be grown in ways that respect and even leverage natural ecosystems. FAO also underscores that “Save and Grow” farming systems are knowledge-intensive, and need to be built on local knowledge and needs, recognizing the important role of farmers as innovators. GREAT to see that this FAO publication (http://www.fao.org/3/a-i4009e.pdf ) contains a very detailed discussion and presentation on SRI, the first time that there has been such an endorsement of SRI (System Rice Intensification). With this publication, FAO joins the World Bank (http://info.worldbank.org/etools/docs/library/245848/) and IFAD (http://www.ifad.org/english/sri/ and http://www.ifad.org/english/sri/documents.html).
Above: Entirely destabilised house next to 100 MW Sorang HEP transmission lines Photo: Sumit Mahar
Immediate Press Statement from Himdhara 02/12/15
In the last two weeks a half a dozen lives have been lost in the Kinnaur region alone in three separate incidents that have one thing in common – accidents at hydropower project sites. The first event took place in Burang village on the 18th of November 2015 where a penstock pipe burst of the 100 MW Sorang Hydro-electric project led to the death of three people. On 29th November, two labourers died in blasting operations in the 450 MW Shongthong Karchham project, some others were seriously injured. And on the same day in the Bhabha Valley, a young teacher lost her life in a landslide that occurred in the area. Continue reading “Kinnaur in crisis; Sheer Negligence in hydro projects claiming lives. Who is accountable?”
Godavari Krishna River Linking: Are we celebrating an illegal, unnecessary & misconceived water transfer project? SANDRP recent blog investigates and exposes the reality behind much hyped Godavari-Kirshana Interlinking project which is in true sense mere a pumping of water projects that too without required legal clearances.
NORTH-EAST ARUNACHAL PRADESH: Green clearance to Dibang Project challenged in NGT (17 July 2015) The 2880 MW Dibang Multipurpose Project will see construction of a mammoth 278-metre tall concrete gravity dam and it will submerge a vast forest area of 4,577.84 hectares or 45.77 sq km, of which major chunks are community forests. The forest land to be diverted is also a major habitat of endangered species such as tiger, leopard, snow leopard, Himalayan Black Bear, Slow Loris, Himalayan Black bear, Leopard cat and Fishing Cat. http://www.dnaindia.com/india/report-green-clearance-to-country-s-biggest-proposed-hydro-project-challenged-in-ngt-2105267 Continue reading “Dams, Rivers & People News Bulletin, 20 July, 2015”
Hydro power to be stressed due to deficit monsoon this year: Piyush Goyal (03 June 2015) The minister rightly mentions that failed monsoon on one hand will curtail power generation from hydro plants on the other it will increase energy demands significantly as farmers would require more energy to run their pumps. http://www.business-standard.com/article/economy-policy/hydro-power-to-be-stressed-due-to-deficit-monsoon-this-year-piyush-goyal-115060300994_1.html
NORTH-EAST: Broken Homes and Dry Springs (06 June 2015) International Rivers’ Bharat Lal Seth on impact of tunneling and blasting for hydropower projects in Sikkim: http://www.internationalrivers.org/blogs/328-17 Continue reading “Dams, Rivers & People News Bulletin, June 8, 2015”
“Right now, hydel is almost stalled”: Piyush Goyal (18 May 2015)
Union Power Minister makes some candid comments on Hydro: “Right now, hydel is almost stalled. We have Teesta stuck for various reasons. Subansiri, Maheshwar, Lower Subansiri, all of them have different challenges. Small hydros are facing challenges of transmission, they are facing challenges of local area problems. So, by and by, the hydro sector will need a more holistic thinking. The courts have also taken up certain matters, particularly in Uttarakhand, post the tragedy (of floods in 2013). There is the mission of Ganga to ensure that there is a reasonable flow—Aviral Ganga, which we are committed to. We are working on all of these plans… For example, Subansiri had an issue where the local population had concerns. We immediately got an eight-member very, very high-level expert committee, including Central Water Commission, Central Electricity Authority, and experts from Assam. They are all working together to see the environmental impact, structural impact, riparian state impact and riverbed impact.
About Maletha Placed in middle Himalaya, Maletha is a prosperous village of about 450 households in Tehri district of Uttarakhand. The village is settled next to National Highway 58, on right bank of Alaknanda River at a vertical distance of 400 meters in Kirti Nagar block. It is about 25 km upstream from Devprayag where Alaknanda from left and Bhagirathi from right side, unite to form the Ganga River.
|1- Maletha Village||5-Tunnel part of irrigation channel*||9- 2013 flood affected farm *||13- Stone Crusher|
|2-Maletha Farmland||6-Alaknanda River||10-Stone Crusher||14- Stone Crusher|
|3- Maletha Temple||7-Chandrabhaga River||11- Stone Crusher||15-Proposed Railway line|
|4- Maletha Irrigation Channel||8-National Highway-58||12- Stone Crusher||16-Proposed Railway Station|
5* Villagers have built Madho Singh Bhandari’s memorial there 9* June 2013 flood has deposited about 25feet high sand on river banks and submersed around 10 acres of agricultural land turning them unproductive.