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Buffalo makes Alwar farmer 'rich', the sun is unusually kind to Madhya Pradesh

Patrika Staff | Updated on: 14 February 2017, 4:49 IST
Sunny side: why Madhya Pradesh has the greatest solar energy potential

The sun god, it turns out, is the most benevolent towards Madhya Pradesh. According to a study by the Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency, or IREDA, the state has the greatest potential to generate solar energy in India.

Rajgarh and Gwalior are among five regions in the country that receive sunlight with the highest density of photons. The efficiency of sunlight in producing energy is measured not by heat but the number of photons in it.

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Rajgarh gets light with a photon density of 5.5 kw/sq m while Gwalior gets 5.3 kw/sq m.

So, what is the state doing about this potential? The local administration in Gwalior, for one, is drawing up a plan for an "extensive network of rooftop solar panels that will produce electricity for the government".

"We are identifying buildings for rooftop solar systems in first phase," says SKS Chauhan, the district's Renewable Energy Officer.

Milking it: why an Alwar farmer's buffalo is the envy of his neighbours

Dharamveer's buffalo is his pride and the envy of his neighbours in Bhamdaka village, Alwar.

Why? Its milk fetches him three times more money. The farmer sells the milk to Saras dairy at Rs 180 a litre. The average rate the dairy offers others is just Rs 48 a litre.

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But what's so special about this buffalo's milk? The amount of fat - 37.6% compared to the average of 10% for buffalo milk.

"Some species of animals produce more milk but it is low in fat content. At the same time, some species produce less milk but with high fat content. The Murrah breed of buffaloes belongs to the latter species," said veterinarian Yogesh Gautam.

[twittable]What's special about Dharamveer's buffalo's milk that fetches Rs 180/litre? 37.6% fat. Average is 10%[/twittable]

The dairy pays for the milk according to its fat content. Dharamveer provides about 10 litres of milk to the diary every day, earning Rs 1,800 per day.

Initially though, when they found such high fat content in the milk, the Saras dairy officials were suspicious. They then brought a team of scientists to test the milk. "The team dispelled the suspicion that the milk was adulterated," said an official at the diary.

Dharamveer insists that he doesn't feed his buffalo "anything special" to produce high-fat milk. "It anyway takes us a lot of effort to extract the milk as it is dense," he adds.

Shirdi Sai temple pledges 200 kg gold to PM's gold monetisation scheme

The Shirdi Sai Baba Temple of Maharashtra has pledged as much as 200 kg gold to the Narendra Modi government's Gold Monetisation Scheme.

The temple, among the five richest temples in the country, could earn an annual interest of Rs 1.25 crore on its deposit.

The temple owns 380 kg gold, but it can't deposit all of it. The reason? As much as 180 kg of this gold consists of ornaments, and the Bombay High Court, through a 2012 order, has banned the temple from melting them.

The trust that manages the temple has said they "are looking at ways to get the high court ban lifted". Sources said they may soon file a review petition against the order.

[twittable]Shirdi temple will deposit 200 kg gold in Gold Monetisation Scheme. Interest earning? Rs 1.25 cr a year[/twittable]

The Shirdi shrine receives 50,000 visitors a day on an average. The footfall cross 1 lakh during festivals.

The caretakers of the temple have said they would use the interest earned on the gold for charity. They reportedly spend Rs 250 crore per year to provide food, shelter and medical facilities to the visitors.

Another of Maharashtra's major temples, the Siddhivinayak, had previously announced that it would deposit 40 kg of its gold in the scheme.

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First published: 6 January 2016, 10:22 IST