Although Kerala has been a top rubber grower in India, the plant was first introduced in the Northeast by the regional forest department in the 1960s

South Asia is looking at an energy abyss. Millions of its people have no access to electricity or any other energy. This has put the brakes on the high growth rates in what should have been a dynamic region. High dependence on petroleum import coupled with mismanagement of their energy sector has made the SAARC countries extremely vulnerable. Cooperation could be a way out. Latha Jishnu travels across Pakistan to find out if India and its largest neighbour can set aside their mutual distrust and find solutions for the energy security of the region.

Lack of clarity on domestic content and procedural hitches delayed the launch by over six months

Union Cabinet yet to approve plan; model code of conduct may be announced anytime in states like Rajasthan, making launch difficult

Four Rajasthan villages get microgrid solar power using an innovative pre-paid meter that detects theft

Agree on floor price for imported Chinese panels; upset European solar manufacturers mull legal action

Gujarat power regulator to hear petition seeking reduction on grounds that project developers are making excessive profits

Cess of industries using self-generated power to be tabulated, but not recovered

'It is an attempt to browbeat India and further the interest of US solar companies'

The US has challenged India's solar energy policy before the World Trade Organisation (WTO), saying it favours domestic sourcing of solar panels. The challenge, filed on February 6, says the Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission (JNNSM) flouts global trade norms.

The 'water ATM' can process 1,000 litres in an hour

As dawn breaks, two queues start forming at the only petrol pump in Lakshmangarh, a small town in Rajasthan’s Alwar district. One, obviously, is of people waiting to get their vehicles’ fuel tanks refilled. The other is in front of a simple metal box mounted on the petrol pump’s boundary wall. People like to call it an ATM machine. But, instead of dispensing cash, it gives them clean drinking water.