12 lakh acres of forest land encroached: Forum for Good Governance
About 12 lakh acres of forest land, especially in Godavari Valley, covering districts of Adilabad, Karimnagar, Warangal and Khammam, has been encroached, Forum for Good Governance (FGG) said.
Stating that the encroachment was caught on satellite imagery, FGG said if the 12 lakh acres of podu cultivation is regularised, it will lead to more encroachments. It warned that in the next 10 years, there may not be any forest land left in Telangana thanks to rampant podu cultivation
Criticising the political parties for demanding regularisation of podu cultivation, he said they should see the larger interests of the state and environment and not make it as an election issue.
He said the forest department was unable to control podu cultivation and in the process 2.5 lakh acres of forest land, which was encroached mostly by people of neighbouring states, was regularised. “With the tacit support of Naxalites and a few political parties, illegal occupation of forests for podu cultivation continued,” Reddy said.
Spain passes new transgender law, anyone above 16 can change their gender
Spain passes new transgender law: The lower house of the Spanish Parliament approved a measure allowing individuals over the age of 16 to change their legally recorded gender without the need for medical supervision. According to the law, drafted by the center-left coalition government, minors between the ages of 14 and 16 must be accompanied by their parents or legal guardians and those between the ages of 12 and 13 will require a judge’s permission to make the move.
The law also abolishes a restriction that banned lesbian couples from registering their children under both parents’ names and forbids the use of so-called conversion therapies to repress sexual orientation or gender identity.
Up until recently, transgender individuals required the diagnosis of gender dysphoria, a psychological disorder in which the patient does not feel that their biological sex matches their gender identity.
UAE to Host the 13th WTO Ministerial Meeting in 2024
The next World Trade Organization ministerial conference will be held in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates in February 2024, the global trade watchdog confirmed in a statement. The UAE and Cameroon were both vying to host the event and came to an informal agreement for Abu Dhabi to host the first one and Cameroon to do the next
For the UAE, hosting the meeting is part of its own push to position itself as a global hub for business amid growing competition in the Middle East. It has been rolling out bilateral trade deals with fast-growing markets since the pandemic. Next year the Gulf Arab state will host COP28, the UN’s Climate Change conference.
New Zealand govt passes world’s first tobacco law to ban smoking
The New Zealand government has passed a law to completely end tobacco smoking by banning youth from buying cigarettes for life. The Smoke Free Environments and Regulated Products (Smoking Tobacco) Amendment Bill has been passed in New Zealand which aims to make New Zealand smoke free by 2025.
The bill aims to ban the sale of tobacco to anyone born after January 1, 2009, and reduce the number of cigarette retailers in the country. The bill has received bipartisan support in New Zealand’s parliament and Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern also plans to reduce the amount of nicotine allowed in smokeless tobacco products. Passage of the bill would reduce the number of tobacco retailers nationwide to about one-tenth of the current number of 6,000.
Rajya Sabha’s productivity during the winter session recorded at 102%
Rajya Sabha’s productivity during winter session 102%: The final day of the winter session, the Rajya Sabha was adjourned sine die, with a productivity score of 102%. Jagdeep Dhankhar, the chairman of the Rajya Sabha, claims that in 13 sittings, functional time was 64 hours and 50 minutes as opposed to the entire allocated time of 63 hours and 26 minutes, and productivity was 102%.
1,920 unstarred questions were answered in the 13 sittings, while 82 starred questions were resolved.
After 28 hours of debate in which 160 members participated, nine bills were ultimately passed or returned during the session.
Although the term “House of Elders” is not listed in the official lexicon, Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar had noted in my opening address on December 7 that it adequately captured the significance of this institution.
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