The Centre should extend Rs. 1,000-crore aid to farmers of Tamil Nadu who have been facing an unprecedented drought in the wake of monsoon failure, P. Shanmugam, State general secretary, Tamil Nadu Vivasayigal Sangam, said.

He told reporters here on Monday that nine farmers in various parts of the State had committed suicide recently, owing to crop failure. The Chief Minister did not announce relief for their families. Each family should be compensated to the tune of Rs. 10 lakh, besides being provided government jobs.

Committee makes note of the “preparedness” shown by it

The manner in which the State Government responded to the outbreak of dengue fever during the recent epidemic is a model that can be emulated elsewhere in the country, B.K. Tyagi, Director, Centre for Research in Medical Entomology (CRME), here has said. A national-level committee formed recently by the Union Health Ministry to investigate into various public health issues had taken note of the “preparedness” shown by the State Government, its Health Department and public participation in tackling dengue outbreak, he said.

Will be valid for a period of five years

The State Environment Impact Assessment Authority (SEIAA) has granted environment clearance for 11 more sand quarries in the Cauvery-Coleroon river basin. A few days ago, the SEIAA had granted clearance for 10 new sand quarries in Tiruchi, Karur, Ariyalur, Nagapattinam, Thanjavur and Namakkal districts. In the second batch of clearance, 11 quarries have been approved, sources told The Hindu on Friday.

The Madras High Court has permitted 10 sand quarries on the Cauvery-Coleroon river beds to continue its operations for a further period of two months.

Failure of the monsoons has wreaked havoc in the lives of farmers in the Cauvery delta

The Tamil Nadu tourism department is implementing a Rs 450-crore project along with the Asian Development Bank (ADB). In the first phase, the department would take up the East Coast circuit followed by the Southern circuit. The main focus will be on improving infrastructure and safety.

The first meeting of the State Level Steering Committee in this regard was held here on Wednesday. Tamil Nadu is one among the four states selected by ADB for the Infrastructure Development Investment Programme for Tourism. TN is the only southern state with the other being Punjab, Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand. The programme targets enhanced economic growth and provision of livelihood opportunities for local communities through tourism infrastructure development.

Vallam town panchayat and Neelagirivatta panchayat near Thanjavur will be made models for solid waste management said N.Ramachandran, Vice-chancellor, Periyar Maniammai University, and chairman, Clean Thanjavur Movement, here on Tuesday.

Presiding over the executive committee meeting of Clean Thanjavur Movement, Ramachandran said "Valam Kundra Vallam" is a project aimed at making the town panchayat a model for solid waste management.

In a major move, the Directorate of Town Panchayats has embarked upon a plastic eradication plan to declare all 529 town panchayats in the State plastic-free by September 15.

In a circular sent to Assistant Directors of Town Panchayats in the State, M. Chandrasekaran, Director of Town Panchayats, has detailed given an action plan to eradicate plastic in the town panchayats.

Chief Minister Jayalalithaa on Tuesday accused the Centre of being least concerned about the Cauvery dispute, a livelihood issue for Tamil Nadu, as the Union government was suffering from “policy paralysis”.

Recalling a letter she wrote to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh two months ago, urging him to convene the Cauvery River Authority (CRA) meeting, the Chief Minister, in a statement, lamented that till now, no action had been taken by the Centre.

The Madras High Court Bench here on Monday ordered for production of licences granted by the Collectors of Namakkal, Karur, Tiruchi, Thanjavur, Thiruvarur and Nagapattinam districts to the Public Works Department for quarrying sand along the stretches of rivers Cauvery, Amaravathi and Kollidam flowing through the six districts.

A Division Bench comprising Justice R. Banumathi and Justice G. . Akbar Ali passed the direction after it felt that the counter affidavits filed by the officials did not contain information sufficient for disposing of the case.