As told to Parliament (July 31, 2023): India lost 661 tigers in nearly 6 years, says minister

All that was discussed in the House through the day

By DTE Staff
Published: Tuesday 01 August 2023

India lost 661 tigers in the last six years, Ashwini Kumar Choubey, minister of state in the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEFCC), told the Lok Sabha.

The minister was responding to an unstarred question raised by member of parliament Asaduddin Owaisi.

As reported by states, 98 tigers died so far in 2023 due to natural and other causes and 12 deaths occurred due to poaching. And of the 661 deaths, 126 tigers died of poaching, he said.

Greywater management

Greywater management (GWM) is one of the integral components of the Phase II of the Swachh Bharat Mission (Grameen) [SBM(G)]. The mission prioritises the management of greywater using sustainable and economical technologies, such as soak-pit, leach-pit, magic-pit or kitchen garden, Prahlad Singh Patel, minister of state of Jal Shakti (water resources), told the Rajya Sabha.

Under SBM (G) Phase II, financial assistance of up to Rs 280 per head is available for villages with a population of up to 5,000. And Rs 660 per individual is available for villages with more than a population of 5,000. Nearly 313,800 villages in the country currently have arrangements for GWM, Patel said.

Arsenic-affected water

Contamination in drinking water sources in rural areas is monitored under Jal Jeevan Mission (JJM), Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, Union minister for Jal Shakti (water resources), told the Rajya Sabha.

At the start of the mission (2019), 14,020 regions across six states were reported as arsenic affected. As on July 25, 2023, the number of arsenic-affected regions has reduced to 460. 

Such regions are identified only in Punjab, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal. Shekhawat said that safe drinking water for cooking and drinking requirements has also been made available in all these regions.

Water harvesting

The Central Ground Water Board prepared a master plan in 2020 to improve groundwater levels, Bishweswar Tudu, minister of state for Jal Shakti, told the Rajya Sabha.

The Master Plan for Artificial Recharge to Groundwater envisages the construction of about 14.2 million rainwater harvesting and artificial recharge structures in the country to harness 185 billion cubic metres of monsoon rainfall, Tudu added.

Declining water levels in reservoirs

The Central Water Commission monitors the live storage status of 146 critical reservoirs in the country and publishes a weekly bulletin every Thursday, Tudu told the Rajya Sabha.

Nearly 86 reservoirs are 40 per cent or below their capacity, according to the reservoir storage bulletin dated July 20.

Urban flooding

Management of urban flooding falls under the purview of the state governments and the urban local bodies responsible for maintaining the drainage and sewerage system, Tudu told the Rajya Sabha.

The Centre has taken several initiatives to encourage groundwater recharge and other nature-based solutions to tackle urban flooding in flood-prone areas, Tudu claimed.

Disposal of medical waste

The Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) has reported that about 678 tonnes per day (TPD) of biomedical waste was generated in the country in 2021. Of this, 16.17 TPD was generated in Odisha, Bhupender Yadav, Union minister for MoEFCC, told the Lok Sabha.

Funds for rejuvenation of water bodies

CPCB monitors the water quality of aquatic resources at 4,484 locations in 28 States and seven Union Territories (UT), Choubey told the Lok Sabha. The board monitors 2,108 locations on rivers and 690 on lakes, ponds and tanksCPCB has identified 311 polluted river stretches on 279 rivers in 30 States / UTs.

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