Should the country import Gir semen when we have many farmers who are rearing them here?

A recent decision by the Narendra Modi government to import frozen semen of Gir bulls from Brazil has generated a lively debate. Incidentally, the breed in question is native to India — specifically the Saurashtra region of Gujarat – and was imported as early as 1849 into the US and Brazil

Tarun Shridhar

Latest
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Neither sewerage, nor sewage treatment plant, Guwahati’s Bharalu river is a sewage channel

The Bahini-Bharalu river carries the city’s untreated sewage and empties it into the Brahmaputra river. Polluted sewage also flows into an important bird sanctuary

Nidhi Jamwal

A fact: We have 3.1 million elected representatives and 1.3 million women representatives

In just seven minutes and five questions, get an introduction to local government in India — what it is, its structure, functions, sources of funding, and some of the challenges it faces

Tanaya Jagtiani

PM Kisan Scheme: Some farmers have got three installments, some have got nothing yet

Out of the total 8.80 crore beneficiaries, 8.35 crore small farmers were given an amount of Rs 2,000 as the first installment. However, in the second installment, the number fell to 7.51 crore

Divendra Singh

Village wells receding into people’s memories. A major water crisis lies ahead?

Many decades back, wells were not only the chief source of drinking water and irrigation but also a part of villagers’ culture and tradition. However, depleting groundwater level is changing all that

Chandrakant Mishra
Positive stories
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The extraordinary journey of an ordinary farmer’s son: Passion for football takes him to Germany

From a very young age, Akash Mishra wanted to do something different to ensure he didn’t have to live his entire life in his village. His passion for football took him to Germany. He is now all set to go places

Daya Sagar
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This startup is spreading the essence of traditional cuisine, also making women self-sufficient

Nativ Chefs, an online platform, offers home-cooked meals to those craving traditional cuisines. Besides, this platform also provides employment to home chefs, mostly women, with good culinary skills

Shivani Gupta
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This ‘seed woman’ never went to school, but has valuable lessons for us and the farmers

Rahibai Popere, who lives in a small Adivasi village in Maharashtra, is all set to win the Padma Shri for her contribution in agriculture. She has preserved indigenous seeds that need only water & air to grow

Swati Subhedar
One night with the farmers …

While you were sleeping under your blanket, the farmers were busy doing this

We may enjoy the winters because we have all the comforts, but these farmers in Uttar Pradesh had to spend their nights in their fields as they had to chase stray cattle out of their farms to prevent them from damaging their crops

Arvind Shukla

Cows were a source of income. When did they become a headache for farmers?

Cows make newspaper headlines and are a topic of discussion in TV studios. But the actual issues involving cows are never discussed. This has led to cows becoming a menace for farmers, who earlier used to worship them

Arvind Shukla
We killed these rivers … watch how

Do you know the last 120 kms of the Sabarmati river comprise just industrial effluents and sewage?

The farmers in the state have been using this “black and red-coloured” water, laden with chemicals, for irrigation and this is what people living in the state have been eating since decades

Swati Subhedar

India is fighting a critical battle to save the Ganga — a river that’s a lifeline for hundreds of millions

The governments have been promising citizens a clean Ganga since 1986, and thousands of crores of rupees have already been spent. But will the river, that supports 43% of our population ever get clean?

Nidhi Jamwal

“It’s acid, and not water, that is flowing in these rivers. It’s making us very, very sick”

Around 150 villages in six districts of Western Uttar Pradesh are situated by three rivers — Hindon, Krishna and Kali. The water is so polluted that people are suffering from deadly diseases

Ranvijay Singh
Hands of India

The heritage village of Odisha where every single resident is a pattachitra artist

For generations, the inhabitants of Raghurajpur village in Puri district of Odisha have been narrating mythological stories through their world-famous paintings — pattachitra — and palm leaf engravings

Nidhi Jamwal

Did you know that cinnamon is added to the powdered glass while making the kite thread?

The earliest evidence of kite flying can be seen in Mughal paintings. From being a stress-busters for the Mughals in India, to being used in military operations in China, the kite has come a long way

Harsh Pathak

Why discard old and broken things? We can easily upcycle them and give them a new life

Gurpreet Singh, who lives in Punjab, is an engineer by profession. He has this unique habit of collecting old, discarded stuff. He creates something useful out of those things that are considered to be useless

Gaon Connection
The endangered species …
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How often do you hear the buzzzzz now? Why can’t you find many beehives around?

Honey collection is a major source of livelihood for many. But changing farm practices, reducing forest cover, increasing use of pesticides and growing cell phone penetration are killing honeybees

Shivani Gupta
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When did you last see a frog? The population of mosquito-eating frogs is on a fast decline

In the past few decades, the aquatic life has been adversely affected due to human intervention. Agricultural use of pesticides is the leading cause of death among amphibians like frogs

Gaon Connection
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Will fireflies live only in our memories? Their population has been falling substantially

Many of us have cherished memories of spotting and catching fireflies that twinkled as if stars. But kids of today may not grow up with similar memories. That’s because fireflies are disappearing

Shivani Gupta
Columns
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Khoya is not a lost opportunity: Small dairy producers will gain a lot from ‘branded khoya’

Out of India’s annual milk production of 175 million tonnes, an estimated 10 mt goes just for converting to khoya – concentrated milk. But there are hardly any organised manufacturers of khoya

Tarun Shridhar
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Central government’s move to privatise district hospitals spells disaster for India’s poor

The disastrous implications will be felt by the poor, women, and Adivasi, dalit and rural communities . At a global level, India may fail miserably on achieving the Sustainable Development Goals

Sulakshana Nandi
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The Wetlands Day should be celebrated every day as the future of wetlands in India is uncertain

There are still lakhs of wetlands in India but they are disappearing. The banks of the river Yamuna, for instance, were dotted with wetlands which are now getting tapped, dried or filled up

Neha Sinha
The videos that narrate a story

Do you know one quintal of sugarcane yields 11-13 kgs of sugar? Watch the whole process

Sugar production involves two operations — processing cane into raw sugar and processing the raw sugar into refined sugar. Watch to understand the process of making sugar from cane

Arvind Shukla

Miles and miles of orange and yellow … this village in Bihar is famous for Marigold farming

In Dumaria village in Purnia district in Bihar, farmers have taken up marigold farming, which fetches them more than maize and paddy. They sell these flowers across India and Nepal

Gaon Connection

These artisans from Benares weave colourful sarees but there’s no spark in their lives

These weavers work long hours but don’t get paid enough. They want to take up other jobs but most of them don’t have any other skillset. The next generation is already moving out

Manish Mishra
Gaon Connection interviews

“By 2022, all those in Uttar Pradesh who were found eligible in our survey will get a home”

In an interview with Gaon Connection, Uttar Pradesh Rural Development Minister Rajendra Pratap Singh spoke about gram panchayat elections, the housing scheme, MGNREGA and lot more …

Arvind Shukla

More than climate change, destructive fishing methods impacting small-scale fishers

The small-scale traditional fishers in India are facing many challenges. T Peter, secretary, National Fishworkers’ Forum, believes the government should give some subsidy to the fisher folk

Nidhi Jamwal

Giriraj Singh’s unique biogas model has helped farmers in this village in Gujarat earn more

The animal husbandry ministry provided biogas plants to houses having milch animals and bought the slurry in return. The ministry claims it has increased the farmers’ income by three times

Arvind Shukla
My rural connection
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Want to know how molten crystals are transformed into colourful lac bangles? Watch this photo feature

Intricately designed and colourful lac bangles are extremely popular among women. Worn by married women, these are considered a sign of good omen. Making these bangles, however, is a tedious process

Gaon Connection
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Busting the myth. There are beautiful villages in Jharkhand, home to culturally-rich Adivasis

Preconceived notions are dangerous. The general tendency is that when we think Jharkhand, we think about poverty-stricken people or the Naxal menace. Here’s a photo series to prove you wrong

Abhishek Verma
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The history of fragrance: How attar or ittar has evolved from one era to the other

The earliest record of perfume-making in India can be found in the ‘Brihat Samhita’, an encyclopaedia authored by a 6th century astronomer, mathematician and astrologer who lived in Ujjain

Harsh Pathak
The tribal way of life
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The existing schemes to combat malnutrition in India are not sufficient for tribals in Bastar

Common factors like poverty and lack of awareness do exist, but there are many other reasons that are specific to the region and have to be handled with a multidimensional approach

Pragya Uike
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Why Maharashtra doesn’t measure up when it comes to Vaccination of Adivasi Children

Most parents aren’t aware of the need for vaccination and health officials don’t reach most of the tribal hamlets located in forested areas that can be reached only by a long walk or a trek uphill

Varsha Torgalkar
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For Adivasi communities, in India, dance plays a central role in their identity formation

While dance is an essential part of Adivasi culture and rituals, it is also a reflection of their worldview and deep attachment with nature, and underlines the importance they give to collectivism

Abhay Xaxa
Tales from faraway forests
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These village women in Odisha fight timber mafia, reclaim lost forests and streams

The unrelenting fight of a forest committee comprising women and led by 67-year-old Sasi mausi has helped regenerate the forests, providing nearby villages with most of their requirements for sustenance and livelihood

Priyaranjan Sahu
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Do you want to experience the life of a villager living near a tiger reserve? Read this

Forest communities are defined as people who rely on forest resources for subsistence, medicine and livelihoods. They possess a plethora of skillsets and knowledge that can help integrate the community into conservation efforts

Bhavna Menon
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Caught in a storm, gripped by climate change … lives of villagers in Sundarbans remain tragic

Away from the cameras of media persons, the poor in the Sundarbans bore the brunt of a cyclonic storm that flattened their mud houses and destroyed the standing crops in a continuing tale of the impact of climate change they have had to endure

Aparna Venkatachalam
Tails
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She loves to pose for pics. Meet Durga — the most adorable baby elephant at Dudhwa

When Durga, who was three-month-old, lost her way after the herd she was moving with was attacked by bees. She was then badly injured and roamed around, in pain, looking for her family

Daya Sagar
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Nearly killed for killing a man, Renu, a tigress, gets a new life – and a lover – at Lucknow zoo

After Renu killed a man last year, she was mauled by furious villagers. She nearly died. But now she is safe at a zoo in Lucknow and spends quality time with Kishan – her boyfriend

Diti Bajpai
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Phulmati, once a slave, is well-fed and receives a lot of attention at a protection centre in Mathura

Phulmati is a content elephant. But nearly six years back, she was a slave. Her caretaker was unkind to her. But she was then rescued and got a new lease of life at a protection centre in Mathura

Diti Bajpai
Stories from Coastal India
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A village in Andhra Pradesh is facing an uncertain future due to coastal erosion

People of Uppada, a village in East Godavari district of Andhra Pradesh, are facing nature’s wrath. The village has had to move multiple times due to coastal erosion

englishteam
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Hundreds of families await fishers, who went ‘missing’ in Ockhi cyclone, to return home

Delay in warning and lack of communication lead to hundreds of fishers in Tamil Nadu and Kerala to go missing in Ockhi cyclone. Bodies of some dead fishers were found. Many are still ‘missing’.

Nidhi Jamwal
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Women facing livelihood crisis in a fishing belt in Andhra spark a change; set up small businesses

The fisheries sector provides employment to more than 14 million people. However, these fisherfolk are staring at a gloomy future as livelihoods get affected and unemployment looms

englishteam
The Slow Interview
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“I am a simple man. I love buying potatoes and tomatoes,” says the real Manoj Bajpayee

Son of a farmer, Manoj says buying vegetables helps him connect with the outside world and that keeps him rooted. He is someone who likes to keep it simple and he loves to laugh at himself

Neelesh Misra
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People run away to become actors; I was thrown out of my house so that I could become an actor!

Ayushman Khurana, who calls himself an old-soul, said he was an extremely laid-back as a person. It was his father who made him ambitious. But what he is today is because of his mother and his wife

Neelesh Misra
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Gaitonde from Sacred Games is brutal, abusive and cocky, but the real Nawaz is quite the opposite

Nawazuddin Siddiqui has been impressing us with his acting abilities, but these days netizens can’t stop raving about Ganesh Gaitonde – the character he plays in Netflix series Sacred Games

Neelesh Misra
India’s Secret Kitchens

When in Lucknow, let Malai Makkhan melt in your mouth

It’s white, soft, sweet & fluffy … it simply melts in your mouth! Malai Makkhan is a dessert that truly has a nawabi touch. It is believed that the Mughals used to polish this delicacy off in minutes. Head to Old Lucknow to have the best malai makkhan

Gaon Connection
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Head to Lalla’s in Old Lucknow for some lip-smacking Biryani

Meticulously measured ingredients and a practiced technique makes the perfect biryani. The evolution of biryani spans many centuries, many cultures, many ingredients and many cooking styles. Head to Lalla’s in Old Lucknow for some yummy biryani

Gaon Connection
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They are hot & spicy … fancy some yummy kachoris?

A hole in the wall shop in Barabanki district in Uttar Pradesh, just 60 kms from state capital Lucknow, has been selling finger-licking kachoris for years now. Head to the shop — fondly known as Tandon jee kachori wala — for some yummy kachoris

Gaon Connection
Folk studio
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Songs of the battlefield and bravery are pride of Bundelkhand

The pride of Bundelkhand, these are songs of the battlefield, songs of bravery from a bygone era. Sung in Veer rasa, Aalha songs are sung by sword-wielding men and women in very powerful voices

Gaon Connection
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Close your eyes … sway to the tunes of Ravanahatta

If you are in Rajasthan, chances are that you will find many folk artists playing this instrument, commonly known as the Ravanhatha. There are not many artists who play the instrument now, but its melodious tune will attract you to the folk artists instantly

Gaon Connection
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This is how women in Bihar welcome their husbands home

Jhumar is a folk-dance form from Bihar. It is said women express their joy and happiness through Jhumar when their husbands, who have been away from them, return home after a long time

Gaon Connection