“The quality of cannabis here is among the best in the world. While we are and will be against the consumption and sale of charas (the narcotic component), there is another aspect to the plant, which we need to look into,” Himachal CM Jai Ram Thakur said.
The worst affected sector due to Covid-19 was tourism, which saw a contraction of 81.33 per cent in foreign and domestic tourist arrivals – from 1.72 crore in 2019 to 32 lakh in 2020. Only 43,000 foreigners visited the state last year as compared to 3.8 lakh in 2019.
The report, released by Union minister of housing and urban affairs Hardeep Singh Puri, stated that Shimla achieved an overall score of 60.90 points in overall 13 categories to grab the top rank. Bhubaneshwar (59.85) and Silvassa (58.43) followed closely.
Replying to the discussion on Governor Bandaru Dattatraya’s address to the Assembly, Thakur said the tricolour was affixed to the governor’s car and the Congress members showed disrespect to it.
He claimed that 2.5 lakh workers returned home to Himachal from other states during the pandemic, while many others working in the state were left jobless due to massive retrenchment in various sectors, especially hospitality and private education
The BJP-led Assembly later suspended opposition leader Mukesh Agnihotri and four other Congress MLAs for the remainder of the budget session for allegedly disrupting the Governor’s address and blocking his cavalcade.
Leader of Opposition Mukesh Agnihotri and four other Congress MLAs Harsh Vardhan Chauhan, Satpal Raizada, Sunder Singh and Vinay Kumar were on Friday suspended for the entire Budget session of the Assembly till March 20 after they allegedly manhandled Governor Bandaru Dattatraya.
In her budget speech, the mayor also suggested introducing a ‘green tax’ on vehicles coming to Shimla from other states, which may bring an annual income of Rs 15 crore to the corporation.
Heavy snowfall, however, has led to the disruption of transport and power supply in parts of the state, especially Shimla district.
Based on these results from the sampled areas, the total population of snow leopards in the state was estimated to be 73.
The Assembly was last convened in September 2020 for a 12-day monsoon session while the winter session, scheduled to be held in December, was cancelled due to a surge of Covid cases.
According to ZSI scientist LK Sharma, a multi-pronged approach of camera trapping, trail sampling, non-invasive genetics and questionnaire survey was used to gather information on the feral dogs.
In late December, migratory water birds started dying in and around the lake in large numbers, and on January 4, samples of some of the carcasses tested positive for the H5N1 influenza virus.
Snow leopard density in the state ranges from 0.08 to 0.37 individuals per 100 square kilometres, with the trans-Himalayan regions of Spiti, Pin valley and upper Kinnaur recording the highest densities.
“I feel very happy that our country has been witnessing regular elections since 1947 after years of gulami (servitude),” Negi told reporters after casting his vote at booth in Kalpa.
Twenty-one more birds were found dead in the sanctuary on Sunday, including only one in the entire Dhameta range of the sanctuary, chief wildlife warden Archana Sharma said.
ITIs, polytechnic, and engineering colleges would also be allowed to open from February 1, while medical colleges had already been allowed to reopen last month. All the remaining government colleges will be allowed to open for regular classes from February 8 after the winter vacation.
Dead migratory birds were first reported from the Pong Dam Lake on December 28. Since then, carcasses of the birds are being found in large numbers in and around the vast reservoir each day.
Other states/UTs which reported a high proportion of physically active older women include Dadra and Nagar Haveli (86 per cent), Karnataka (84 per cent) and Puducherry (81 per cent).
Of the newly found carcasses, 150 were old mortalities in the Dehra wildlife beat which were retrieved on Tuesday from swampy areas of the lake, chief wildlife warden Archana Sharma said.
CM Jai Ram Thakur said that a state-level steering committee and task forces at the state, district and block levels will monitor the vaccination drive.
A total of around 2.06 lakh people cast their votes for 394 ward members in 29 municipal councils and 21 nagar panchayats of the state (six newly created nagar panchayats were not included in the election process).
On Monday, samples of dead migratory birds found at the Pong Dam Lake had tested positive for H5N1 avian influenza, a type of bird flu caused by the H5N1 strain of Influenza A virus.
Bilaspur, Chamba districts report one hundred per cent immunisation.
The value of the seized contraband in the national market is estimated to be around Rs 1 crore, the police said.