Sunday January 20, 2019

Garbage Littered at the Site of the Bokkapuram Temple Festival

Garbage littered by the devotees and the shops at the site of the Bokkapuram temple festival is still uncleared

Mudumalai Tiger Reserve. Source-Wikimedia Commons

Tamil Nadu, Mar 11, 2017: At the site of the 4-day Bokkapuram Temple festival organised by the Sholur panchayat in the periphery of Mudumalai Tiger Reserve (MTR), the garbage littered by the devotees and the shops is still uncleared as reported by The Hindu.

The wildlife of the area has been affected as well, elephants were seen roaming around near the temple, consuming the plastic bags and food waste according to one local.

About 150 kg of plastic waste is generated every year during this 4-day festival and about one tonne waste is cleaned every year, according to M. Kumaravelu, field officer of CPR Environmental Education Center, who used to organize clean-ups after the completion of the temple festival every year, with the help of volunteers. But as the district administration does not offer them any help, they had to stop.

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An official from the Sholur panchayat had assured that the clean up would start by Monday, and that the delay has been caused due to the unavailability of workers to carry out the clean up process.

Nagina Reddy a resident of Bokkapuram who runs a resort, thinks that the panchayat should help them out with trucks that would collect the waste and take it to a waste processing unit.

Prepared by Upama Bhattacharya. Twitter @Upama_myself


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Guinea Worm Diseases Moves Towards Total Eradication

While Guinea worm disease may be on the brink of eradication in people, the Carter Center said there were still thousands of cases in animals in several African nations.

Guinea Worm Disease
A child watches while a nurse with the Carter Center bandages blisters on her leg from where a Guinea worm is emerging, in Abuyong, Sudan, Nov. 4, 2010. VOA

There were just 28 reported human cases of Guinea worm disease (GWD) last year, the U.S.-based Carter Center said Thursday.

The nongovernmental organization founded by former President Jimmy Carter said the disease is gradually moving toward eradication.

The Carter Center says there were about 3.5 million human cases of GWD in Africa and Asia every year before it took the lead of the Guinea Worm Eradication Program in 1986.

“These aren’t just numbers, these are people,” program director Adam Weiss said. “This is why tens of thousands of volunteers, technical advisers, and staff are working in thousands of villages to find and contain the last cases of this miserable disease and show people how to wipe it out once and for all.”

Guinea Worm Disease
A woman points to her toe from where, she said, three worms emerged in 2009 when she was infected with Guinea worm in her town of Terekeka, South Sudan, Oct. 4, 2017. VOA

People and animals get Guinea worm disease from drinking water contaminated with tiny crustaceans that carry the worm larvae. The larvae mate inside the victim and after the male dies, the female emerges from a blister on the skin and can only be gradually pulled out.

Guinea worm disease is rarely fatal. But the Carter Center said it can incapacitate victims for months — something that villagers who work, farm or go to school cannot afford.

Also Read: Pakistan Starts A Nationwide Polio Eradication Drive

There is no vaccine against GWD and no medicine to treat it.

But the disease can be easily prevented by teaching communities how to filter drinking water and keeping Guinea worm patients and animals away from water sources.

While Guinea worm disease may be on the brink of eradication in people, the Carter Center said there were still thousands of cases in animals in several African nations, where violence and insecurity are making effective prevention difficult. (VOA)