Learning across South Asia: Strengthening Electoral Management; Strengthening Democracy
India’s experience in conducting the largest democratic elections in the world is well known and its one, that other countries in the world continue to learn from. In October 2014, Maharashtra, a state in west India with a population the size of Mexico, held elections to the state assembly. With approximately 52 million estimated to have voted for over 4000 candidates in the fray, a delegation of Election Management Bodies from seven countries in South Asia visited the city of Pune to witness the counting of votes. They included the Election Commissioners and senior Electoral Officers of Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka
Breaking Free: From Manual Scavenging to Fish Farming
Manual scavenging refers to the practice of manually cleaning, carrying, disposing or handling in any manner, human excreta from dry latrines and sewers. Since 1993, key legislations have been enacted prohibiting employment of people as manual scavengers, banning the construction of dry latrines and providing rehabilitation. Yet, a significant proportion of an estimated 2.6 million dry latrines in India continue to be cleaned manually.
Breaking Free: Women Champions End Manual Scavenging
Despite legislation that prohibits manual scavenging, it is estimated that a significant proportion of the country’s 2.6 million dry latrines are cleaned manually. Women comprise the vast majority of manual scavengers. Community advocates are playing an important role in ending the practice.
Breaking Free: Life After Manual Scavenging
“I used to throw up all the time because I could not take the smell,” says Sevanti Bai, recalling the many decades she worked as a manual scavenger in Dewas district in Madhya Pradesh. Convinced by others in her community and the law which prohibits manual scavenging, she quit in 2007. Since then, she and her family have struggled, making ends meet, through odd jobs, working in the fields and cleaning grain.
12 August 2014
Volunteering to Build Ability
This is the story of one community’s sheer determination to build a more inclusive society where disability is seen as a type of ability. In this journey they have found support from United Nations Volunteers who as speech therapists, rehabilitation specialists, physiotherapists and school administrators, are nurturing and caring for children with special needs.
04 June 2014
Saving Energy in the Tea Sector
UNDP in partnership with the Tea Board of the Ministry of Commerce, Government of India and the Global Environment Facility initiated a four year project in 2008, aimed at introducing energy conservation measures in small tea processing factories that could help units save between 15 to 30 percent in energy costs.
04 June 2014
Conserving Medicinal Plants, Protecting Traditional Knowledge
Since 2008, UNDP in partnership with the Ministry of Environment and Forests, Government of India and the Global Environment Facility is promoting sustainable use and conservation of medicinal plants in the three ecologically-fragile states of Uttarakhand, Chhattisgarh and Arunachal Pradesh.
22 May 2014
People and Seas: Coastal and Marine Biodiversity in Sindhudurg
Sindhudurg , on the coast of Maharashtra is one of 11 ecologically critical habitats in India. Since 2011, a UNDP partnership with the Ministry of Environment and Forests and the government of Maharashtra, is supporting efforts to conserve the enormous biodiversity wealth of the coastal area. The partnership is supported by the Global Environment Facility.
12 May 2014
India Election Diary 2014: The Final Phase
Varanasi, situated on the banks of river Ganges in Uttar Pradesh was one of the cities that went to polls in the ninth and the final phase of India’s marathon 2014 national elections on 12 May. The Chairperson of the Electoral Commission of Mauritius accompanied by Lise Grande, UNDP Resident Representative were in the city to witness India’s impressive electoral management.
09 May 2014
India Election Diary 2014: Voting in the Himalayas
Delegates from eight countries of the League of Arab Nations, Kenya, Uganda, Myanmar and Bhutan engaged with election officials, visited polling booths and interacted with voters to understand how the world’s largest election is being managed.
30 April 2014
India Election Diary 2014: Voting Young
Managing the largest elections in the world is an exercise of monumental proportions. A delegation from India's south Asian neighbor, Nepal is in Howrah, West Bengal to engage more closely with election officials on how India is managing these elections.
24 April 2014
India Election Diary 2014: Lesotho, Nigeria and Malaysia Witness Massive Administrative Convergence
India Election Diary 2014: 3.3 million people voted in Agra, Uttar Pradesh on 24 April 2014. Representatives from the Election Commissions of Lesotho, Nigeria and Malaysia were in the city to observe the country’s impressive election management. The Election Commission of India and UNDP are facilitating the participation of 20 countries from across the world to learn more about electoral management.
Caring for India’s Infants: Reducing Child Mortality
The photo-essay details how since 2013, UNDP’s partnership with the Government of Norway is strengthening infrastructure and capacities to deliver newborn and child care; increasing community access to health care services and improving the quality of life of children with development difficulties.
Women Adapt to Climate Change in Odisha
The photo-essay shows how a UNDP partnership with the Government of Odisha, supported by the Australian Agency for International Development is enabling women in Puri district in Odisha to adapt to extreme weather events.
India: from 'slash and burn' to sustainable farming
A joint programme between UNDP and the Nagaland Government is introducing subsistence farmers like Atula to new kinds of sustainable agricultural practices.
Protecting the Ocean’s Ambassadors
Since 2009, UNDP in India has partnered with the Ministry of Environment and Forests and the Government of Odisha to conserve large areas of land outside protected areas and develop community conserved areas. Over 6,000 community conserved areas have been identified to support conservation activities in partnership with local communities. In the coastal district of Ganjam, the Rushikulya river is one such location. It is home to one of the most significant mass nesting sites of sea turtles in the world.
A Face to the Invisible
UNDP helps count delhi's homeless