BHUBANESWAR: The blistering heat has gone from bad to worse in Orissa even as the alleged sunstroke toll rose to 17 today.

Four more deaths have been reported from the districts in the last 24 hours, the State Revenue Control Room stated. While the fresh death reports are yet to be verified, the official toll stood at two.

BALASORE: A five-year-old boy died and 50 others have been affected by malaria in Nilagiri for the last couple of days.

Panic gripped Babandh and its adjacent Kudumsahi villages under Siadimal panchayat following child Radhu Singh

BHUBANESWAR: Even as the sugar price in the open market continues to be robust, the State is facing an average shortfall of about 4,000 tonnes of levy sugar every month.

BHUBANESWAR: The State Flood Control Board today approved projects worth Rs 2,850.83 crore to contain floods and create more irrigation potential for the farmers.

The projects approved at the meeting presided over by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik include the Salandi Sanskara Project, Bramhani-Kelua-Birupa Doab projects and 121 other small projects.

BALASORE: They stood like a wall around their calves protecting them from a tiger couple.

In a rare show of filial affection, a herd of 42 elephants cordoned off two calves in Kuldiha sanctuary in Balasore district for nearly 24 hours to save them from two tigers. The elephants made a ring around the babies till the tigers vanished into the dense forest yesterday.

BALASORE: The outbreak of bird flu in Murshidabad district of neighbouring West Bengal has spread panic among the poultry farmers in Balasore district. While the border villages in Balasore and Mayurbhanj have been put on alert, Chief District Veterinary Officers (CDVOs) of both the districts have been asked to inspect chicken farms and hatcheries.

BALASORE: The agriculture sector in India should be modernised to ensure good production or else the country would face food security crisis in the next 15 years, said Hans Wolff, Counsellor for Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality, Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

Wolff was here today to visit Sadhoba Marine Private Limited, a fishing net manufacturing unit at Khannagar.

BHUBANESWAR: Though Orissa is a pioneer in conferring industrial status to agriculture in 1996, it still lies far behind in fertiliser use.

Even after a new agriculture policy in 2008, the fertiliser use lies at 53.2 kg per hectare though it should have been 100 kg per hectare by 2007-

BHUBANESWAR: Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik today said that Dr GV Challam pioneered the study to bring changes in the genes of paddy seed which can withstand saline water after cyclones.

BALASORE: Three persons, including a woman and two children, have died of diarrhoea within last couple of days in Mukhura panchayat under Remuna block of Balasore district. The deaths have been reported from two tribal hamlets.

The deceased have been identified as Sita Singh of Gourapur and Kuni Singh and Buni Singh, daughters of Banguru Singh, of Nuapadhi village.