Jharkhand

Chhatpuja Celebrated

Chhatpuja is an ancient festival celebrated by Hindus and Jains alike. It is believed to be the only Vedic Festival dedicated to the Hindu Sun God, Surya, and Chhathi Maiya, a Vedic Goddess. The Chhat Puja is performed to thank the Sun God for sustaining life and providing energy. The worshippers request the Sun God for prosperity and progress. People also invoke Chhathi Maiya, also known as Usha in the Vedas. She is believed to be the consort or wife of the Sun God. People pray to her asking for salvation.

Celebrations

Worshippers pray to the Gods,  perform religious rituals and make offerings to the Gods. It is also customary to undergo a fast and bathe in the Ganges. All the rituals are observed over a span of four days. The Chhat Puja rituals find mention in the Mahabharata.

The festival is observed most diligently in Bihar, Jharkhand, Eastern UP and the Terai regions of Nepal.  The day of Chhath Puja is a public holiday in Delhi.

‘Coal block allocations from 1993 to 2010 illegal, done arbitrarily': Supreme Court

The Supreme Court declared illegal all coal block allocations between 1993 and 2010, saying these were done in an unfair, arbitrary and non-transparent manner without following any objective criteria. The court, however, said that further hearing was required to decide whether there is a need for cancelling around 200 coal block allocations.

The petitions were based on the Comptroller and Auditor General’s (CAG) report that the exchequer suffered a loss of Rs. 1.64 lakh crore due to the arbitrary allocations of coal blocks. The coal blocks allocated to private companies between 2004 to March 2010 are situated in Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, Maharashtra, West Bengal, Odisha and Madhya Pradesh.

Ranchis’ Kanke Dam endangered by waste

Ranchi’s key water reservoir Kanke Dam — that hitherto provided water to thousands of houses located around it has been receiving waste emanating from human activities concentrated around its periphery which has become a threat of extinction to the water body. The dam situated in the Kanke area of Ranchi is famous for its beautiful picnic spot besides a place that offers tranquility.

But the Dam has been an object of neglect for the State Government. The Dam which was built in 1954 has not been cleaned even once since it came into existence. Algal bloom has started in the dam and it is creating a lot of problem for the treatment plant. It affects quality of the water. Besides, the water body has reduced in area.

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