» 04/27/2012, 00.00
Nepal, the Himalayan forests are burning
Over 225 areas destroyed in less than a week. Thousands of acres of pristine forest went up in smoke across the region of the Hindu Kush - Himalaya. Hundreds of villages remain isolated. Relief stopped because of inadequate means and limited funds.
(AsiaNews) - The burning of thousands of hectares of forest has brought the
mountain communities of Nepal to their knees. This
week, 225 fires have struck areas scattered throughout the region of the Hindu
Kush - Himalayas, causing serious damage to homes and killing wild animals and
of the few passable roads, relief efforts are struggling to reach remote
people accuse local governments of underestimating the phenomenon that occurs
every year during the dry season.
Wakil, Minister for Forests and Soil Conservation National, says: "We are
doing our best to control the disaster, but we have no adequate means because
of the few funds for fire prevention." These
days, the Kathmandu government has launched a fire alert that could last
Ramesh, head of the National Park Bardia, explains that in a few days thousands
of acres of forest have been burned, already affected by fires in recent years.
areas are isolated - he says - and we do not yet have precise data on the
damage caused to persons, fauna and flora".
these years in the Hindu Kush - Himalaya coal mines and timber industry have
cleared hundreds of acres of forests and dispersed tons of mercury in soil and into
the air, increasing the risk of fires.
to Prasad Sharma, coordinator for the UN International Strategy for Disaster
Reduction-South Asia Wildland Fire Network this week alone 83% of fires that
usually occur in a year were
high mercury concentration in areas near the mines - he added - could lead to
other devastating fires." He
warns that the line of fire is encroaching on villages. Thousands of people are at risk.
In Orissa Christians treated worse than animals, says Father Bernard
As the situation gets back to normal amid fears and tensions, what happened is slowly emerging. Victims talk about the violence inflicted upon them, a true “attack against the sacredness and dignity of human life”. Beaten repeatedly and left unconscious for hours in the forest, Fr Bernard Digal tells his story.
Hindus from India and Nepal demonstrate in favour of the restoration of Nepal’s religious monarchy
Thousands of ascetics protest peacefully on the border between the two countries, blocking roads for a day, chanting hymns and slogans. Extremists now threaten more actions if the government does not restore the Hindu king and monarchy.
12/04/2016 10:25:00 INDIA
Authors of Kerala temple fire arrested
Five officials of the Hindu place of worship have surrendered to the police, while another five are untraceable.They are all are accused of attempted murder for the fire which killed over 100 people. Meanwhile, number of wounded increases. A court must decide today whether to ban all fireworks in temples, but the board that manages 1,255 temples opposes any ban.
Government punishes companies responsible for forest fires
Some 23 companies have been sanctioned, some losing their license, for setting fire to clear forests to plant palm oil trees and trees for pulp and paper companies. The resulting smoke and haze have interfered with travel and caused respiratory problems in half a million people. The crisis is set to cut GDP by 1.9 per cent.
Despite government yes, non-Hindus still denied the right to bury their dead near Kathmandu
Police and Hindu extremists stop funeral by animist Kirati in Slesmantak forest, near Pashupati temple. Christians, Muslims and animists protest. More than 40 people are injured in clashes. Prime minister urges local authorities to find an appropriate burial place.
VATICAN - USA
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CHINA - UNITED STATES
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