Voluntary Citizen or Civil Society Sector

Featured Articles
December 6, 2019 A report by the India Rivers Forum highlights the need to focus further than the main stem of the Ganga river.
Distant snow clad mountains, the smaller hills and the Ganga river (Image: Srimoyee Banerjee, Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA 4.0)
December 4, 2019 To adapt well & build resilience, climate change strategies need to factor in efforts towards water security, writes Vanita Suneja, Regional Advocacy Manager (South Asia), WaterAid.
Image credit: WaterAid/Prashanth Vishwanathan
November 27, 2019 Policy matters this week
An irrigation well at Randullabad, Maharashtra (Source: India Water Portal on Flickr)
November 21, 2019 A report by NIUA brings to light the chinks in Jaipur's sewage system and suggests some solutions.
Routine check done by the sewage treatment plant staff in Delawas, Jaipur. The plant is part of the ADB best practices projects list. (Image: Asian Development Bank, Flickr Commons)
A rainbow recovery post-COVID
The movement towards radical ecological democracy needs to combine the practical and policy-level grassroots work with broader mobilization. Amita Bhaduri posted 7 months ago

There is a disquieting hush across the world as the linkage between the planet’s health and human well-being became pronounced during the times of the pandemic. The deepening socio-economic and ecological crises caused by patterns of production and consumption are being increasingly recognised.

The women of Deccan Development Society sanghams move towards more localized natural resource management (Image: Deccan Development Society, Facebook Page)
How forest-dwelling communities are braving the pandemic
Local communities and gram sabhas better understand the local complexities than the local administrations while dealing with a crisis situation. Amita Bhaduri posted 7 months 1 week ago

The pandemic and lockdown measures have had a drastic impact on a large population of poor and marginalised communities, causing loss of livelihoods and employment, food insecurity and socio-economic distress. While vulnerabilities, atrocities and injustices faced by forest communities due to forest, conservation and economic policies have increased d

The non timber forest products collection season, which is mainly in the months of April to June coincided exactly with the lockdown (Image: CIFOR, Flickr Commons)
Poor implementation of forest rights act hurts tribals
Need to recognise the rights of forest-dwelling and tribal communities over their traditional lands. Amita Bhaduri posted 7 months 1 week ago

In pre-colonial times, India’s forestlands were mostly under the use of the local communities. Forest policies led to centralisation in colonial times with forestland being subject to commercial over-exploitation for revenue generation purposes. This, in turn, led to land alienation of forest dwellers and an overall increase in deforestation.

Indigenous groups that lived and helped maintain the forests for centuries have been undermined (Image: Baiga women, Wikimedia Commons; CC BY-SA 3.0)
Governance lessons that could keep us prepared for pandemics
Leo Saldanha of Environment Support Group speaks on rethinking aspects of our governance system in post-pandemic times. Amita Bhaduri posted 7 months 2 weeks ago

Unabashed assaults by human beings on the natural ecological system have caused the coronavirus to spread in the first place.

Decentralised governance systems that allow to adapt and learn are best placed to deal with disasters (Image: Kantsmith, Pixabay)
Pandemic impacts on women – Stories of survival
Women experience the effects of the COVID-19 crisis in different, often more negative ways. How are they coping? Amita Bhaduri posted 7 months 1 week ago

The pandemic has wrought havoc on the entire world. Pessimism, suffering, unemployment, hunger and poverty resound in all corners. To survive is a physical, mental and financial battle. And every family and individual has an anecdote to narrate that speaks volumes about their combat strategy, losses and victories.

Gender dimensions of the pandemic (Image: Gby Atee)
The women sanitation champions of Angul
Residents confronted with poor sanitation conditions come together and organise for effective sanitation service delivery in crowded, low-income neighbourhoods in Angul, Odisha. Amita Bhaduri posted 7 months 2 weeks ago

Sita Behera, the 35-year-old mother of two lives in the Radhamadhavapura unauthorised slum in Angul. She is the President of the Ward Sanitation Committee (WSC) that is leading the work on making the slum open defecation free. Driven by the desire to improve the living conditions for her children and the neighbourhood at large, she prompted 140 families to construct latrines over two years.

Women come together in multi-layered sanitation institutions in Angul set up under Project Nirmal to improve the sanitation chain. (Image: SCI-FI, CPR)
Overexploitation of groundwater highest in Punjab: Government
News this week Swati Bansal posted 7 months 2 weeks ago

Punjab no.1 in overexploitation of groundwater 

Overexploitation of groundwater highest in Punjab (Source: IWP Flickr Photos)
Gendered impacts of COVID-19
The pandemic affects rural women disproportionately with damaging impacts on their employment, health and security. Amita Bhaduri posted 7 months 2 weeks ago

COVID-19 has unleashed one of the greatest human tragedies of the contemporary era demonstrating our fragility and has laid bare severe and systemic inequalities at all levels. It provides several lessons in the conduct of all aspects of human personality, professional, societal, and institutional lives globally.

The time-use survey indicates that women are now spending more time on unpaid domestic and care work (Image: Sunita, Pixabay)
MNREGA helps a village in Bihar become flood proof
United action of locals, wisdom of the village head and MNREGA help to deal with waterlogging in a village in Bihar. Swati Bansal posted 7 months 3 weeks ago

Harpur Bochha is a village in Vidyapatinagar block of Samastipur district of Bihar. The village, which has a population of about 11.5 thousand people and  2349 houses, remained inundated with rain and floodwater throughout the year followed by waterlogging.

MNREGA comes to the rescue of Harpur Bochha (Source: Umesh Kumar Ray)
Improving city-wide sanitation service delivery in small towns of Odisha
Project Nirmal demonstrates appropriate, low-cost, decentralized, inclusive and sustainable sanitation service delivery solutions for two small towns (Angul and Dhenkanal) in Odisha. Amita Bhaduri posted 7 months 3 weeks ago

Tucked away in the slums of Dhenkanal, a small community offers a glimpse of how sanitation solutions have changed hundreds of lives for the better. Till recently, post rains in the absence of proper drainage, the clogged lanes were causing a lot of inconvenience to the residents of Parhatiya Sahi slum.

Community meetings in the slums of Dhenkanal under Project Nirmal (Image: SCI-FI, CPR)