Sunday, November 30, 2008
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Sakal, Nov. 19, 2008
मुद्दा विकासाचा आणि विस्थापनाचाही?
आंध्र प्रदेशातील गोदावरी नदीवरच्या इंदिरा सागर प्रकल्पास (पोलावरम धरण प्रकल्प) सर्वोच्च न्यायालयाने नुकताच हिरवा कंदील दाखविला आहे. लाखोंना विस्थापित करून विकास घडविण्याचा मुद्दा यानिमित्ताने पुन्हा चर्चेत आला आहे.
सुमारे एक लाख एकर कृषी जमीन पाण्यात बुडविणाऱ्या आणि २९० गावे आणि वाड्यावस्त्यांतील साधारणतः दोन लाख नागरिकांना विस्थापित करणाऱ्या एका प्रकल्पाला सर्वोच्च न्यायालयाने १९ सप्टेंबरला हिरवा कंदील दिला. हा प्रकल्प आहे आंध्र प्रदेशातील गोदावरी नदीवरचा इंदिरा सागर प्रकल्प (पोलावरम धरण प्रकल्प). त्याच्या निर्मितीचा खर्च आहे अंदाजे तेरा हजार कोटी रुपये. विकासाचा रणगाडा पुन्हा एकदा इतिहासाची पुनरावृत्ती करत फिरायला लागला आहे. या प्रकल्पामुळे विस्थापित होणाऱ्या लोकसंख्येत निम्मी लोकसंख्या अनुसूचित जमातीची आहे. १७.५ टक्के लोकसंख्या अनुसूचित जातीची आणि १५ टक्के लोकसंख्या मागासवर्गीयांची आहे.
बहुतेक मोठ्या प्रकल्पांप्रमाणेच पोलावरम प्रकल्पालाही अनेक बाजू आहेत. सध्या अनुसूचित जमाती आणि वनांवर अवलंबून असणाऱ्यांबाबत जोरदार चर्चा झडत आहेत. या वादात वन्य जीवप्रेमी संघटना आणि वन खात्यानेही उडी घेतली आहे. या प्रकल्पामुळे जंगलाचा नाश होण्याचा मुद्दाही चर्चेत आहे.
वनाधिकार कायद्यावरूनही गदारोळ सुरू आहे. धोक्यात येत असलेले प्राणिजीवन वाचविण्यासाठी अस्तित्वात येत असलेल्या वन्य जीव प्रकल्प आणि अभयारण्यांमुळे या हक्कावर गदा येत असल्याचे एका बाजूला वाटते. धरणे, खाण प्रकल्प आणि प्रतिबंधित क्षेत्रांमुळे वनांवर अवलंबून असणाऱ्यांचे विस्थापन होते आणि त्यांना नवे आयुष्य सुरू करणे अवघड जात असल्याचा आक्षेप आदिवासी चळवळींचे अध्वर्यू आणि अन्य नेते गेले काही दशके घेत आहेत. ते सगळ्या प्रकल्पांना एकाच मापात मोजतात. वनसंवर्धन साठा मोलाचा वाटा उचलणारी स्थानिक मंडळीच आता कडवट बनली आहेत. या स्थानिकांना विश्वासात घेतल्याशिवाय किंवा त्यांच्या मदतीशिवाय वन्य जीवांचे संरक्षण आणि संवर्धन होणार नाही. पण पोलावरम प्रकल्पाला मिळालेली मंजुरी किंवा ओरिसातील नियामगिरी टेकड्यांच्या प्रदेशात बॉक्साईटच्या उत्खननास देण्यात आलेली परवानगी पाहता, स्थितीत काहीही बदल झाला नसल्याचे दिसते.
पोलावरम प्रकल्पाचे उदाहरण महत्त्वाचे आहे. त्यातही "वनजमिनी'चा प्रश्न जास्त महत्त्वाचा आहे. या प्रकल्पात ३७ चौरस किलोमीटर क्षेत्रफळाची राखीव जंगल जमीन पाण्यात जाणार आहे. त्याशिवाय पापीकोंडा अभयारण्यातील १७ चौरस किलोमीटर जमीनही पाण्याखाली जाईल. आंध्र प्रदेशाच्या पश्चिम आणि पूर्व गोदावरी आणि खम्मम जिल्ह्यांत मिळून ५९० चौरस किलोमीटर क्षेत्रात पापीकोंडा अभयारण्य पसरले आहे.
सर्वोच्च न्यायालयापुढे या प्रकरणाची सुनावणी चालू होती. न्यायालयानेच नोव्हेंबर २००६ मध्ये नेमलेल्या "सेंट्रल एम्पॉवर्ड कमिटी'ने (सीईसी) सादर केलेला अहवाल सुनावणीत महत्त्वाचा होता. या धरण प्रकल्पाला अंतिम मंजुरी देण्यापूर्वी पाण्याखाली जाणाऱ्या जमिनीच्या मोबदल्यात पापीकोंडा अभयारण्यासाठी पाचशे चौरस किलोमीटर जंगल समाविष्ट करावे आणि हे अभयारण्य राष्ट्रीय अभयारण्य म्हणून जाहीर करावे, अशी महत्त्वाची शिफारस "सीईसी'ने केली होती. त्यामुळे पापीकोंडाचे क्षेत्रफळ सुमारे एक हजार चौरस किलोमीटर होऊन ते देशातील एक मोठे अभयारण्य ठरेल, असे समितीने म्हटले होते. या परिसरात किमान वस्ती असावी अशीही अपेक्षा होती. भारताच्या वन्य जीवसंरक्षण कायद्यानुसार, राष्ट्रीय अभयारण्यात कोणालाही राहता येत नाही आणि वनोपजांवर उपजीविका करणाऱ्यांचे सर्व हक्क नष्ट होतात. संख्येपेक्षा तत्त्वाला महत्त्व देण्याचा हा प्रकार आहे. विस्थापन ही काही चांगली बाब नसते. या प्रकल्पामुळे बाधित होणाऱ्या सुमारे दोन लाख नागरिकांना त्याचा आता अनुभव येईल. आधी धरणामुळे आणि नंतर अभयारण्याचे क्षेत्रफळ वाढविण्यामुळे त्यांना विस्थापित व्हावे लागणार आहे. न्यायालयाच्या निकालामुळे "सीईसी'च्या अहवालावर शिक्कामोर्तब होऊन धरण बांधण्याचा मार्ग मोकळा झाला आहे. त्याचबरोबर पापीकोंडा राष्ट्रीय अभयारण्य अस्तित्वात येणार असल्यामुळे वन्य जीव संवर्धनाच्या नावाखाली आदिवासी जमाती विस्थापित होणार आहेत.
पोलावरम हा फक्त अपवाद नाही. असे अनेक प्रकल्प प्रस्तावित आहेत. त्यातले काही पुढे रेटले जात आहेत आणि काही रेटले जातील. धरणांसाठी जंगलांनी समृद्ध असलेला ईशान्य भारत आणि खाणींसाठी मध्य व पूर्व भारतात अनेक प्रकल्प रांगेत आहेत.
(लेखक पर्यावरण चळवळीतील कार्यकर्ते आहेत.)
Sunday, November 16, 2008
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Editor, PA Update, C/o Kalpavriksh
PROTECTED AREA UPDATE
News and Information from protected areas in India and South Asia
Vol. XIV No. 6
December 2008 (No.76)
LIST OF CONTENTS
-A Gulf in trouble?
NEWS FROM INDIAN STATES
SEZs threaten wildlife
Community Biosphere Reserve in Upper Siang District
Disease kills rhino calf in Pobitara, 2nd one ailing
Chakrashila staff receive training at Corbett
Workshop on wildlife management
Workshop on hoolock gibbon translocation
Call to include Kaziranga portion in NH-37
Male rhino gores female to death at Manas
Manas poachers join green NGO
Feral dogs hunt blackbucks at Velavadar
66% tourists to Gujarat visit Gir
Hotels functioning illegally around Gir
New management zone for PAs in North Gujarat
FD proposes incentive scheme for informers
JAMMU & KASHMIR
Wildlife crime prevention workshop held in Leh
FD ‘adopts’ two villages near Dalma WLS
Spotted deer released into Hazaribagh NP
Initiative to control traffic in Bandipur NP
Tribal people block entry to Nagarhole NP
Night traffic banned on road inside Nagarhole NP
Wildlife research institute coming up in Kodagu
Tiger population rising in PTR; count to be undertaken across state
Conflict between panchayats over management of Kadalundi Community Reserve
Oussudu Lake declared first sanctuary in Puducherry
Garo Students Union Opposes Coal Mining in Balpakram NP, South Garo Hills
Simlipal opens for tourists from November
Tourism facilities for Chandaka WLS
Anti-poaching measures at Chilika
Villagers of Karlapat WLS start exercising rights under Forest Rights Act
Large scale mortality of aquatic life in the Gulf of Mannar Marine NP
Campaign to declare Gulf of Mannar a World Heritage Site
Metal trap-detectors for Corbett and Rajaji
Trains through Dudhwa may stop
Top officials transferred after tiger death in Sunderbans TR
Czech national arrested for collecting beetles from Singalila NP flees country
NATIONAL NEWS FROM INDIA
Parliamentary committee for scrapping of the Compensatory Afforestation Fund Bill
Responses to the draft regulatory framework for wetland conservation
13 tigers poached in last two years
Conference of Southern Forest Ministers
49 Indian mammal species face extinction threat; rhino out of IUCN red list
NTCA signs pact with TRAFFIC India
Edberg award for environmental work to Shekar Dattatri
Workshop on wildlife conservation laws for Northeast judiciary
World’s largest population of endangered dolphins found in Bangladesh
Bangladesh acts to protect deer in Sundarbans
New President for the IUCN
MoU for protection of migratory birds of prey found in Europe, Africa and Asia
INTERPOL and CITES launch new manual for wildlife crimes investigators
Maharashtra Rajya Pakshimitra Sammelan 2008
Small Cat Action Fund
Doctoral research fellowships in tiger conservation
Graduate Research Assistantship at Michigan State University
LIST OF COMMUNITY AND CONSERVATION RESERVES IN INDIA
LATEST STATUS OF CRITICAL TIGER HABITATS
A GULF IN TROUBLE?
Just a few months ago there were other reports of the corals here getting diseased on account of deteriorating water quality associated with increased pollution and sea surface temperatures (PA Update Vol. XIV, No. 3). Illegal blasting and collection of coral for use as limestone continue to pose a serious threat to coral reef resources in the region and it was not very long ago that the exotic algae Kappaphycus alvarezzi that is being cultivated here as part of a commercial enterprise was seen to have invaded significant parts of the protected area (PA Update Vol. XIV, No. 4). This species is reported to have become invasive (displacing local varieties of algae) and was also smothering corals leading to major adverse impacts on the reefs in the Caribbean, where it was introduced with similar intentions of income generation. There are fears that a similar situation will be seen soon in the Gulf of Mannar too.
It would seem that Gulf of Mannar Biosphere Reserve which is the biggest and one of the oldest in the country has no respite from human created disasters and one is not even talking about the construction of the Sethu Samudran Shipping Canal that will undoubtedly cause huge irreparable damage to this unique and rich ecosystem. While there are some studies on the negative impacts of human activities such as sewage disposal, exotic species introduction and coral mining, it would also be very important to initiate a long term process to monitor the economic and ecological impacts of these developments.
What is important is that the developments in the Gulf here are only indicative of what is happening all along India’s rich and diverse coastal systems. We have a huge coastline that is ecologically very rich and one that supports thousands of human communities. In more ways than one this system has always received a step-motherly treatment. Large scale pollution, construction of major projects like ports, industrial hubs and power plants and damming of rivers that eventually force a change in the fine coastal balance continue even today, unmindful of the damage that is being caused.
The present developments here are perhaps a good indicator of just that. The faster we take notice of this the better it will be because in abusing or even just neglecting the coastal systems today we forget that a much higher price will have to be paid tomorrow.
Vol. XIV, No. 6, December 2008 (No. 76)
Editor: PANKAJ SEKHSARIA
Editorial Assistance: WRUTUJA PARDESHI
Illustrations: MADHUVANTI ANANTHARAJAN
Produced by: KALPAVRIKSH
Ideas, comments, news and information may please be sent to the editorial address:
KALPAVRIKSH, Apartment 5, Shri Dutta Krupa, 908 Deccan Gymkhana, Pune 411004, Maharashtra, India. Tel/Fax: 020 – 25654239.
Production of PA Update 76 has been supported by THE FOUNDATION FOR ECOLOGICAL SECURITY (FES), Anand.
Saturday, November 8, 2008
Earlier this year, I called the Union budget myopic (see Down To Earth, March 31, 2008). Let me reiterate why. The Union budget did not take into account the fact the world was beginning to face new challenges, all of which were devastating, and related. One, the rising cost of our food—you will recall subsequently prices did go up and food riots took place in many parts of the world. Two, the problem of ‘peak’ oil prices—which, again by mid-year, touched an astounding us $140 per barrel, and despite a present downturn remain quite volatile. Three, the devastating impacts of climate change, visibly on crop productivity because of water scarcity or untimely rains or the growing frequency of natural disasters. Four, a possible, us-led global recession.
Well, that recession has, since then, blown up in our faces as companies, banks collapse and governments rush with billions of dollars to their rescue. And myopia seems a global malaise. What should astound us is not the crisis, nor its scale or its devastation, but the response of our financial and political managers. Remember, these are people who have all studied alike; who all speak the same words and do the same done things. All of them believe they know their world and can come up with answers quicker than you can say ‘meltdown’. So, even as they are completely lost in this world today, their arrogance persists. First, they said, “Don’t worry, it won’t touch us”. Now, they are saying, “Don’t worry, it will pass”.
The fact is they don’t have a clue of what is happening. They also refuse to accept this crisis is actually inter-related crises linked to the way we have managed growth till date. The fact is we have been taught, and have practised what has been preached, we can consume our way to growth and consume our way through and out of any slow-down period. “Don’t worry, just consume” is the mantra. If we cannot ‘afford’ to consume, then, too, we should not worry. The financial systems will ensure we get cheap loans to buy homes, cars, washing machines, or anything else we may not need but desire. After all, it is only if we consume that growth indicators will look rosy again, and the world will remain happy.
The problem with this model is that we do little to ensure we can bring the cost of the product down so that it is affordable. In other words, we do not plan, design, manufacture and sell products and services that meet the purchasing abilities of people. We don’t demand technology to work for affordability. We also don’t share wealth so that more can afford this growth—afford the house or the car—without the loans that will make the banks boom and then go bust.
The sub-prime crisis that hit the us, is precisely because of the fact that banks loaned quickly, cheaply to people who could not afford the housing. Worse, the market gained, if the house was more expensive—conversely, less affordable.
The other way to growth is to subsidize the cost of producing the products we should consume. Take the ‘Nano’ example in India, where every car manufacturer is in a scramble to get public largesse—from land at throwaway rates, interest free loans to free or nearly free water and power. This is all to reduce their cost of manufacture, to place the car we cannot buy within our reach. It is another matter that in this economics, the cost of our consumption has been subsidized. It is a story uncannily similar to how food in the rich world is grown—farmers (most agri-businesses) are loaded with subsidy dollars to grow cheap food so that its consumption (and over-consumption) can grow, even as obesity takes the form of the world’s most deadly disease. It is also a fact it is the same consumption-led economic growth that has brought the world to the climate change precipice. The point still is: are we beginning to make these connections?
Clearly, no. In fact, there is only one way to crawl out of the current hole–do more of what we have done till date. The us $700 billion bail-out package was explained very succinctly by us president George Bush in the interest of the ‘poor’ worker. “The banks needed to loan, as otherwise ordinary Americans would not have money to buy the car and this would mean that the factory workers in Detroit would lose their job.” Simple logic for simple economics: buy and buy to make the economy go around.
In this way, the vicious circle will go, on and on. We will consume more, because it is the only way we know to economic growth. Even if it costs us a bank or the Earth.
We will not talk about this. To do so would mean we would have to change our fundamental understanding of what constitutes growth; to what leads to happiness and what results in employment and well being for all. It would mean changes in how we measure economic growth—junking or going beyond the gross domestic product (gdp) indicator to one that is much more comprehensive in assessment of these needs.
As of now, we will not change. The world is still in the hands of the same men who put us in the mess in the first place. It is their limited imagination and enjoined ideology that has got us here. It is their lack of imagination that first pushes airlines to believe they can be as cheap as railways. Then pushes for public largesse to fund what we can’t afford. So don’t expect any change. This financial crisis may go away. But the storm is still to come.
Friday, November 7, 2008
Bharatpur had no water, no fish — no birds. Yet, ingenuity and effort revived the wetland, writes PRERNA SINGH BINDRA
From Tehelka Magazine, Vol 5, Issue 45, Dated Nov 15, 2008
JULY 2008: Hope had almost died, much like the sanctuary at Bharatpur, starved of water and life for nearly five years. As the monsoon approached, many a hopeful eye looked to the sky. This time, the gods did not disappoint and rain drenched a parched earth.
The first to test the waters were Openbills, arriving in tentative numbers. Soon, the Kadam trees were colonised by thousands of these storks. Their arrival signalled others to follow, and Keoladeo Ghana National Park, better known as Bharatpur, was back in business. Darters, egrets, herons, ibis’, and cormorants set up house. Jacanas were busy making nests atop thick floating vegetation, and the Sarus Crane did what it does best — dancing and wooing its mate.
The migrants — ducks, teals, pochards, gadwalls, geese, pintails — have started making cautious forays. And it is expected that they will land in huge numbers at their winter sanctuary, denied to them over the years.
The first sign of unhappy days ahead came in the early winter of 2002, when Keoladeo’s star visitor, the Siberian Crane, having dwindled to a measly three over the years, failed to show up. Though you couldn’t lay the blame on Bharatpur’s door — the cranes travel through hostile skies — many superstitious ornithologists took it as a grim sign. True enough, drought plagued the region from 2004 onwards. Bharatpur shrivelled up. Worse, the waters of the Ajan dam, fed by the Gambhir and Banganga rivers — the wetland’s lifeline — was denied to the sanctuary, thanks to agitating farmers and water politics. Over the past four years, rainfall had been low, and farmers demanded water for their fields. Rajasthan’s Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje stated in 2005 that “people, not parks, were her priority”. Not understanding that denying the wetlands would mean groundwater for nearby farmers wouldn’t be replenished, the powers-that-be succumbed to political pressure and diverted water meant for the swamps to farmlands. The result? Devastation.
The wetland, accorded the status of a Ramsar Site, became arid. Birds gave the dry, desolate park a miss. The Siberian Cranes were already history; the flourishing stork colonies and heronries now ceased to exist. From the 400-odd species the park boasted, the numbers crashed to 48 last year, and the park that saw hundred of thousands of birds in a normal season now barely held 4,000. Other species suffered, too. The endangered Fishing Cat dwindled to negligible numbers, otters once seen frolicking here vanished, and turtles were seen desperately thrashing in tiny, putrid pools of water. The once fecund Bharatpur had become a graveyard. “There was no breeding at all, how could there be in such conditions? No water, no grasses, no fish. Lacking prey, the raptors took wing too,” says Bholu Abrar Khan, a park veteran. The economy centred on the park was devastated. Says Rattan Singh, a rickshawpuller who takes tourists around the park, “There were very few tourists, those who came, returned unhappy”. Hotels ran empty.
The initial reaction was kneejerk. Spluttering tubewells were installed but feral cattle, which had taken over the park, lapped up the water they pumped. The state government’s more lavish but equally doomed plan — to draw water through a pipeline from the Chambal river, at a cost of over Rs 100 crore — was rubbished by experts. “Bharatpur needs live water that gives birth to the grasses, fish, etc that birds feed on. Water that comes all the way from Chambal will be inert, and of little use,” explains Dr Parikshit Gautam, Director, Wetlands Programme, World Wide Fund for Nature, India.
The problem of Prosopis juliflora, an exotic species that grows rapidly and hampers the growth of other species, was equally grave. In just three years, from 2002 to 2005, its spread almost doubled, obstructing the regeneration of native vegetation, and trees like Salvadora persica and Balanites aegyptiaca — on which fruit-eating birds like Rosy Pastors depend.
“So bad was the situation that there were fears the wetland would lose its World Heritage Status. Which it almost did”, says Bikram Grewal, author of The Bharatpur Inheritance. “We couldn't allow that to happen,” says R N Mehrotra, Chief Wildlife Warden of Rajasthan. So began the battle to regain the park. The first step was to get rid of the prosopis: a monumental task with no precedent. The forest department strategised an innovative plan that benefited local villagers, and the WWF pitched in financially. Through eco-development committees formed in villages near the park, families were allotted plots of land from which they would clear the weed. In exchange, they were given wood. About eight kilometres of the park were cleared, and nearly 1 lakh quintals of wood extracted from it. Many locals used this bounty to repay old debts. Tukiram from Jatoli village not only cleared his debts, he also built a house.
The water problem was even more complex. Fortunately, this year, the rain gods obliged. But this is not enough. To survive, Bharatpur needs about 550 mcf of water, most of it supplied by the Ajan bund. Though a prickly issue, discreet politics, plus coordination with the district administration, saw about 450 mcf being released in three phases from Ajan.
Ajan, however, can no longer be depended on, given the volatile politics attached to it. One solution was to divert the Chiksana canal, which drained Ajan’s flood water, and passed through the park’s southern tip. This was diverted to the E block — the point once visited by the Sibes. It filled the gap, supplying about 80 mcf. “Also on the anvil is a project to get water from the Govardhan canal, a flood drain with no claimants to its water. This will mean drawing a pipe of about 17 kms to the park. Together, these canals can meet Bharatpur’s needs in times of stress”, explains Dr Gautam. .
“The state has already sanctioned Rs 12.46 crore for this. The cost is about 65 crore, and the Planning Commission has agreed to grant the rest. We have already started work on it and hope the canal will be ready by the next monsoon. Bharatpur need never go thirsty again,” says Mehrotra.
Bharatpur is still a far cry from its former glory, but well on its way to recovery. With the prosopis scourge removed, and the gift of water, Bharatpur is alive with the cries of a thousand birds. Bholu points out the nest of a Painted Stork: the mother has just brought back fish and the four chicks are raising hell, stabbing at her beak for the food. “Four chicks, and they have all survived — it means there’s enough food in the park...” And enough hope for the future!
Tuesday, November 4, 2008
By Pankaj Sekhsaria
DNA, Pune Edition,
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
There is a new hierarchy that has slowly but surely entrenched itself in India’s urban reality. It is not really articulated in that light, but it is an experience that any resident of our cities could not have missed. Get on to the roads of your city as a pedestrian or a cyclist and you know instantly that you are a 2nd class citizen. It’s not difficult to understand - while the annual growth rate of human population across 23 of our major cities for the period 1991-2001 was a little more than three, the annual growth rate of vehicles for the same period was almost 10 and this has only accelerated in the recent years. The consequences are obvious - zooming cars and two wheelers, blaring horns, billowing smoke, narrower footpaths, fewer trees – it is increasingly a punishment to even get out onto to city roads if you don’t have a personalized mode of motor transport.
In line with the logic that growth in vehicle population and density is non-negotiable and questioning it amounts to sacrilege, the single biggest activity in our cities in recent times has been road and flyover construction and road widening. Trees, footpaths, old shops, houses – nothing matters. Conservative estimates suggest, for instance, that at least 50,000 trees, many for accommodating the increasing traffic, have been chopped down in Pune in the last five years alone. Pedestrian and cyclists occupy minimum road space and cause no pollution at all, but that is of no consequence at all. By cutting trees and reducing (even eliminating) footpaths the situation is only being made more hostile for them.
An excellent example of this is the four laning and huge expansion of road width on the highway between Nigdi and Dapodi along with the most recent construction of grade separators. It has been suggested that a vehicle can now cover this distance in a little over eight minutes. While motorists are delighted for obvious reasons, others, particularly those who walk or use cycles have been completely forgotten. There are a number of sections in this stretch where one has to take a detour of at least a couple of kilometers to just cross over to the other side. Twenty minutes of driving time saved for a motorist has directly translated to at least twice the duration of transport time for a pedestrian. Children and old people will, in fact, be put to the greatest hardships.
The recently published nation-wide study on ‘Traffic and Transportation Policies and Strategies in Urban Areas in India’ that was commissioned by the Union Ministry for Urban Development provides evidence of precisely this. Thousands of people are killed annually in our metros in road accidents and not surprisingly a substantial number of those killed are indeed pedestrians. “And for pedestrians,” the report notes, “our city roads have simply forgotten they exist. The percentage of roads with pedestrian footpaths runs to hardly 30% in most cities.”
It has to be remembered that every citizen is a pedestrian at some point in his or her use of the roads of a city. Unless priorities in urban planning, in the media and in our thinking are not refocused, this problem is only set to increase. Merely adding and widening roads is not going to help. What is needed is a more fundamental effort at improving public transport, reducing private vehicles and putting the welfare and safety of the pedestrian and cyclist at the very centre of all that we do.
More pedestrians, otherwise, will continue to die and the most frightening part is that it could be anyone of us, any point of time.