South Asia

Published: Friday 30 November 2007

No littering in bhutan: Bhutan has passed a law to prevent littering and pollution in the kingdom's capital Thimphu. The Thimphu Municipal Solid Waste Management Rules and Regulations 2007 will come into force from December 1, laying down stiff penalties for littering and illegal dumping of waste in and around the capital. Throwing litter on the streets will now invite a fine of 100-500 ngultrums (US $2.25-11.25), while some other prohibited acts such as burning solid waste in the open, urinating and defecating within city limits, unauthorized dumping of soil and hazardous waste can attract fines up to 20,000 ngultrums (US $450). Thimpu city corporation has appointed 10 environment inspectors to enforce the law and plans to appoint more. The city currently generates 35 tonnes of waste a day. Authorities say if the law is successfully implemented, Thimphu could become one of the cleanest cities in South Asia.

colombo frees fishers: Sri Lankan president Mahindra Rajapaksa ordered the release of 97 Indian fishers who were detained by the island nation's navy on November 2. The fishers, from Tamil Nadu's Nagapattinam district, had allegedly strayed into Sri Lanka's territorial waters. They were produced before a court in Jaffna and remanded to custody. Their release order came after the Tamil Nadu government took up the matter with the Sri Lankan government. This is the first time that Sri Lankan navy has arrested a large number of Indian fishers.

bangladesh needs SEZ: The World Bank has asked Bangladesh to develop more special industrial zones to achieve its millennium development goal and halve its poverty level by the end of 2015. The government should focus on developing more special economic zones to create jobs, said World Bank President Robert Zoellick during his two-day visit to the country. Zoellick expressed the bank's willingness to assist the government to prepare an action plan for a better business environment.

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