JAISALMER: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is expected to inaugurate two 50 megawatt solar projects at Phalodi in Jodhpur district by the end of this week. A detailed itinerary of his visit is yet to come but after his approval the state as well as district administration has begun preparations.

The PM's confirmation to the visit is a testimony to the silent yet successful revolution to tap non-conventional sources of energy in Jodhpur and Jaisalmer districts. Pokhran belt in Jaisalmer and Phalodi belt in Jodhpur, over the past few years, have witnessed a surge in the number of solar and wind projects with big-ticket firms competing to set up plants.

JAIPUR: Anticipating more investments in tourism sector, the 'Tourism Unit Policy-2007' has been extended till March 31, 2014.

Three More Die Of Disease, 9 Others Test Positive

Jaipur: The eastern part of Rajasthan has not been much affected by swine flu while the western part has witnessed the highest number of cases reported in the recent past. As many as 13 districts are almost untouched by swine flu while others are marginally or badly affected districts. Meanwhile, three more persons died of swine flu — one in Jaipur and two in Jodhpur on Wednesday. As many as nine others tested positive for swine flu.

110 deaths since January; 148 since April 2012; 586 since 2009

The Rajasthan Government on Monday cautioned about rising incidence of swine flu (H1N1) in the State and sought Central assistance even as the Bharatiya Janata Party accused the Government of not being serious about addressing the epidemic-like situation. The virus has claimed over 110 lives in the State this year while 148 people have died of the disease since April 2012. Since 2009, when the epidemic first broke out in the state, a total of 586 people have succumbed to the disease.

Tamiflu Still Effective Against H1N1: Virology Institute

Jaipur: The strain of the H1N1 influenza virus has not mutated since 2009 when cases of swine flu were first reported in the state. The National Institute of Virology (NIV) in Pune, in a reply to the medical health and family welfare department, said that swine flu’s viral sequencing was done here and the results revealed that the strain has not mutated and the virus is still susceptible to Oseltamivir (tamiflu) tablets.

Jaipur: A screening for non-communicable diseases (NCDs) in seven districts of Rajasthan, conducted by the health department, has found that Bikaner and Jodhpur are most vulnerable to NCDs such as diabetes and hypertension.

The survey also revealed that Barmer, Jaisalmer and Nagaur have the least cases of NCDs. In these three districts, less than 3% of the population screened by the department was found to be suffering from diabetes or hypertension.

Welspun Energy, India’s biggest developer of solar projects, on Tuesday said it has commissioned a 15 Mega—Watt solar project in Rajasthan ahead of schedule.

JAIPUR: Residents of Pink City woke up to the coldest morning of the season on Monday when the city recorded a minimum temperature of 2.3 degrees Celsius, almost 5 degrees below the normal minimum. In most places of the state, shivering cold conditions threw life out of normal gear with Churu recording minus 2.7 degrees and Mount Abu recording minus 0.5 degrees - the two most coldest places in the state.

The two places were followed by Pilani which recorded a minimum temperature of minus 1.4 degrees Celsius, Karauli 0, Sriganganagar 0.4, Vanasthali 0.8, Dausa and Rajsamand 1.5, Bharatpur 1.9, Fatehpur 2.1, Bikaner 2.6, Chittorgarh and Sawai Madhopur 2.8, Bundi 3, Udaipur 3.2, Pali 3.6, Sikar 3.8, Jaisalmer 4, Kota 6.2 and Jodhpur 6.9 degrees Celsius.

Jodhpur: The vulture population at two most important congregation sites of the bird (which is now endangered) in the state is going down. One site is in Jodhpur, where vultures, especially migratory ones, are decreasing due to unavailability of carcasses; while the second site is in Bikaner where these birds die after being crushed under trains.

Jodhpur’s Keru was once a favourite spot for both resident and migratory vultures, since it was a dumping ground for carcasses on which the vultures could feed.

An ambitious food fortification programme launched in Rajasthan this past September benefiting school children through the mid-day meals scheme will be expanded this year to cover about 10 lakh children. The centralised kitchens are supplying fortified soya dal analogue containing additional micronutrients under the project.

The State Government is implementing the project in collaboration with Jaipur-based Institute of Health Management & Research (IIHMR) and the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN). Mid-day meals were added to the programme after its successful execution through the public distribution system for common citizens, women and children having low levels of nutrition.