A study on the physiology of root parasitism in sandal (Santalum album L.) was conducted by comparing a six-year-old sandal grown alone and along with a host (Casuarina equisetifolia). Although maximum haustorial connections were observed when grown along with the host, sandal formed haustorial connections with plants including grass up to a distance of 3 m. Anatomical studies on haustoria indicated a vascular connectivity between the host and sandal.

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This study seeks to understand factors that guide the decision-making process to adopt and implement the available arsenic-mitigation technologies in rural areas in the middle-Ganga Plain in India. A total of 340 households comprising 2500 people were surveyed.

Heavy rainfall and hailstorm events occurred in major wheat-growing areas of India during February and March 2015 causing large-scale damages to the crop. An attempt was made to assess the impact of hailstorms in the states of Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh (UP), Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh (MP) using remote sensing data.

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Impacts of elevated temperature and carbon dioxide (CO2) enrichment on rice were assessed by carrying out an experiment with four dates of planting (1 June and 15 June, 1 and 15 July) during 2014 under two different environmental conditions, viz. ambient and modified (climate control chamber) with +4C compared to the ambient temperature and CO2 enrichment of 650 ppm.

Wetlands seem to be more vulnerable to invasions compared to terrestrial ecosystems. The alien invasive weed, Ludwigia peruviana, invading the wetlands of the Dhansiri catchment and eastern part of Kopili in Assam has threatened the resident biodiversity and has also posed possibilities of spreading to other wetlands of North East India. The present study was conducted to measure the impact of the weed on the biodiversity of this region, to find out the causes for increasing invasiveness and to suggest a suitable management strategy.

Increasing emission rate of carbon dioxide (CO2) and other greenhouse gases is the major driver of global temperature increase. Soil microbial respiration is accelerating the release of CO2 in the environment, but the mechanistic understanding of this process is still at its nascent stage. In this note, we discuss the importance of understanding the microbial responses to climate change and associated respiration process in the Indian Himalayan region.

The hybrid congener 3 derived from hydroxychalcone and pharmacophore oxypropanolamine for adrenergic receptor, along with its enantiomers 9a and 9b were selected from a series of compounds for detailed studies of their antidiabetic profile in sucrose-challenged, low-dosed, streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats and in db/db mice, and antidyslipidaemic profile in high fat diet-induced dyslipidaemic hamsters. The test compounds exhibited significant and consistent antidiabetic and antidyslipidaemic activities in the above models.

This study provides application of Resourcesat-2 AWiFS satellite imagery for forest burnt area assessment in India. AWiFS datasets covering peak forest fire months of 2014 have been analysed. The total burnt area under vegetation cover (forest, scrub and grasslands) of India was estimated as 57,127.75 sq. km. In 2014, 7% of forest cover of India was affected by fires. Of the major forest types, dry deciduous forests are affected by the highest burnt area, followed by moist deciduous forests.

The recent flood in Machak River, Madhya Pradesh, India is a distinctive paradigm of flash floods that washed off rail tracks and killed a number of passengers besides incredible damage to Indian Railways and to the surrounding villages. This shows the vulnerability of bridges/culverts to flash floods in the country. Flash floods devastated the Machak River during the midnight of 4 August 2015 due to heavy rainfall in the catchment.

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In this communication, we report observation of anomalous radon gas emission measured in a borehole at India’s first multi-parametric geophysical observatory (MPGO) located at Ghuttu, Garhwal Himalaya, established by the Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology (WIHG), Dehradun.

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