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In 6 months, 831 drug offenders booked in Himachal, poppy on 1366 bighas destroyed: Govt

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Shimla: In the Cabinet meeting held on July 24, 2018, at Shimla, the Himachal Pradesh Government was told that during the last six months, poppy crops were destroyed from 1366 bighas as compared to only six bighas in 2017. Apart from this, 831 drug offenders were arrested and cases were registered against them during the period, it was informed.

Further, the Cabinet directed that a special campaign would be launched to check drug menace by involving Education, Health, Police, Social Justice and Empowerment departments besides ensuring active participation of panchayats, Mahila Mandals, parents, school-children and teachers etc.

It also directed to promote alternative crops in the traditional cannabis growing areas so that people could be motivated to grow alternative crops.

It is pertinent to mention that there a petition regarding the legalization of cannabis (hemp) cultivation is still pending in the State High Court. The petition says with the legalization, currently grown cannabis, which contains a high amount of TCH – the psychoactive substance, could be replaced with hemp. Hemp doesn’t contain enough THC to make it suitable for smoking and getting high.

Also Read: Industrial hemp can revolutionize Himachal’s economy, end war on drugs, says petition seeking legalization

The petition also says that the hemp cultivation would not only help eradicate the menace of drug mafia but also revolutionize the economy of several regions where people do not have any major source of income. With hemp, over 25,000 products could be manufactured, the petition further says.

The court had even directed the government to take up the matter and make a call. However, the government hasn’t considered it.

The Cabinet also felt that necessary amendments can be made in the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act to make it more stringent to curb this menace.

It further said a State level Special Task Force be formed to nab the drug peddlers throughout the State, it said. The Home Department was told to hold regular coordination meetings at the Director General level with the neighbouring States.

It also directed to conduct joint police operations with neighbouring States to check inter-State drug flow.

Misc News/Press Release

HP Gauseva Aayog Constituted With Headquarters in Shimla

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HP GauSeva Aayog Members


Shimla-The Himachal Pradesh Gauseva Aayog has been constituted, informed a spokesman of State government today.  The headquarter of Aayog will be at Shimla.

The State Cabinet, in its meeting held in November 2018, had given the approval to establish this Aayog.

Today, this Aayog was constituted under the Chairmanship of Animal Husbandry Minister. Additional Chief Secretary (AH), Additional Chief Secretary (Finance), Additional Chief Secretary (Revenue), Additional Chief Secretary (Forest), Principal. Secretary (Excise and Tax.), Secretary (RD & PR), Secretary (LAC), Dean Dr. G.C. Negi College of Veterinary and Animal Science, Chaudhary Sarwan Kumar CSKHPKV, Palampur Kangra, and Director General of Police, H.P. are the members and the Director Animal Husbandry, H.P. is a member secretary.

He further said that Ashok Kumar of District Solan is a Vice Chairman of H.P. Gauseva Aayog.

This Aayog have ten other non official members that includes Ashwani Kumar Dogra, of Bilaspur, Chet Ram and Swami Abhishek Giri  of District Mandi, Susheel Kumar and Krishan Pal Sharma of District Una, Jagdip of Sirmour, Sushant Destha of District Shimla, Ashok Kumar Sharma, of District Kangra, Ashish Kumar, District Hamirpur and Sher Singh of District Kullu.

Besides non-official members this Aayog have ten special invitees that includes Sandeep Kumar of District Chamba, Dev Raj Chaudhari and Devanand Gautam and Dinesh Kumar Shashtri from District Solan, Ram Rishi Bhardwaj, Roshan Lal and Rajinder Rana from Shimla, Suram Singh of District Una, Chander Shekhar of District Kangra and Dr. Ashok from District Hamirpur.

The Vice Chairman and non-official members of the Aayog will hold office for a period of three years from the date of appointment.

The purpose of this body, the Government said, would be preservation, conservation and welfare of cows in the State. It is also expected to regulate the institutions like Gausadans, Gaushalas, cow sanctuaries, Gau Vigyan Kendras and community animal rearing centres etc. engaged in the welfare of cows. The Aayog would also address the problems relating to abandoned cows.

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Misc News/Press Release

NDRF Personnel Saves Woman from Drowning, Sacrifices Life for Duty

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NDRF Constable Rajender Gautam of Bilaspur, Himachal Pradesh

Bilaspur-Another braveheart of Himachal Pradesh sacrificed his life while performing his duty as personnel of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF). He is being hailed as a true example of selfless service towards humanity.

Rajender Gautam, 36, a native of Laher village in Jhanduta region of Bilaspur district, was serving in the 9th Battalion of the NDRF as a constable.

As per the NDRF Inspector General L Ravi Joseph, he was deputed at Sangam Ghat in Prayagraj. On the early morning of 19 February 2019, an elderly lady crossed the safety barricade while taking a dip in Sangam river during ‘Maghi Purnima Snan’. She was caught in the swift currents of the river.

Rajender spotted her and jumped into the river without a second thought. He saved the woman from being swept away by the strong currents. However,  while rescuing the woman, he was severely injured by a solid object. Despite his injury, he carried the woman to the bank safely and fell unconscious.

He was rushed to the nearest local hospital but considering the severity of his injuries, he was airlifted to Delhi’s Safdarjung Hospital on the same day.

The doctors found that Gautam had sustained multiple spinal cord injuries near the neck. He underwent a surgery but succumbed to his injuries on the early morning of February 22.  

Gautam is survived by his wife and two daughters, his mortal remains are expected to arrive at his native place today.   

Gautam joined the Border Security Force in 2004, and he was serving in the NDRF since 2013. He indeed lived up to the motto of the NDRF — ‘Saving Lives and Beyond’ – said Joseph.

NDRF Director General S N Pradhan and several other officials have expressed grief over this loss and paid their tribute.

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Environment

Total 332 Bird Species Located in Himachal Pradesh

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Bird Species Count in Himachal Pradesh

Shimla-As per the Great Backyard Bird Count (7th Indian edition), the number of bird species in Himachal Pradesh was 332 in 2018, a spokesman of State Forest Department informed on February 21, 2019.  

PCCF (WL) Dr. Savita said that among the Indian States, Himachal Pradesh shared the topmost position with Uttrakhand where the highest number of species was recorded.  

Birding locations included wildlife sanctuaries, national parks, conservation reserves, villages and urban areas. She said that more than 150 bird species were recorded in Mandi, Shimla, Kangra and Sirmaur districts.

The Great Backyard Bird Count is a citizen science initiative intended to encourage both amateur and professional bird-watchers to contribute towards the understanding bird and their biology in a better way.

The Department said that amateur birders from across the state contributed in the count in addition to 287 checklists that were uploaded into e-Bird by 55 participants.

 Participation in the event involved a minimum of 15 minutes bird watching during which all the bird species seen were counted and listed.  It involved bird watching sessions with school teachers and students, birding involving local villagers and panchayat representatives and training of frontline staff of the forest department in bird identification.

The Department said a detailed report is in preparation and will be circulated by the first week of March

This initiative was coordinated by Joint Secretary (Forests) Sat Pal Dhiman, Chief Conservator Forest (HQR) Nagesh Guleria, Chief Conservator Forest (WL) South Sushil Kapta, DFO (Hqr) N.P.S. Dhaulta along with other senior officers of the department.

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