National Geographical Journal of India <p>The National Geographical Journal of India (ISSN: 0027-9374), an international peer-reviewed and refereed journal, is published quarterly in March, June, September, and December since 1955. It publishes articles of geographical interests that deal with originality and critical appraisal of problems, review of the relevant and current literature, enhancement of geo-environmental knowledge and development of thought and related contemporary issues. All submitted papers are assessed by editors and expert referees.<br /><br /> Editor: <a href="">Prof. Srabani Sanyal</a>, Department of Geography, Banaras Hindu University (India).</p> en-US (Prof. V. N. Sharma) (Prof. S. Sanyal, Department of Geography, BHU) Sun, 31 Dec 2023 00:00:00 +0000 OJS 60 Impact of mercurial pollutants on human health in India with special reference to Sonanchal region: A review <p>Mercury, also known as quicksilver, is a heavy, odourless, lustrous liquid metal mainly found in bright red crystalline solid Cinnabar ore. It can be found in its elemental form, both as inorganic mercury or as organic mercury. It has toxicological effects on the health of human beings and the environment. It is well documented in a few pieces of evidence such as the Mad Hatter disease, Minamata episodes, methyl mercury poisoning in Iraq, the Kodaikanal incident, etc. India is a signatory to the Minamata Convention (2013) and one of the major mercury emitters in the world. According to the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), coal burning is the primary source of mercury emissions in India. Although the CPCB listed only a few mercury-contaminated sites but there are numerous mercury polluted sites that continue to pose a threat to human health and the environment of India. So, it is necessary to find out the contaminated sites and their impact on human health for controlling this health hazard. Various biomarker studies on the micro level have been conducted in different locations in India and a few remarkable studies were organised in the Sonanchal coalmine region of the Eastern Vindhyan Range. The outcome of studies outlined that adverse health conditions have been identified in the local population due to mercurial toxicity. The Coal-fired power plants are likely to cause mercury pollution in the region. The common diseases caused by these pollutants include tremors, joint pain, skin discoloration, etc. These symptoms align with acute to chronic indicators of mercury toxicity as recognized by the United States Environment Protection Agency (USEPA) and World Health Organisation (WHO) in 2021. This study aims to review the various studies that have been carried out on this crucial health issue to identify the affected areas, its impact on human health, and its causes.</p> Ashish Kumar Rai, Anand Kumar Chaudhary, Dhanraj Gownamani Copyright (c) 2023 Sun, 31 Dec 2023 00:00:00 +0000 Land degradation associated with coal mining in Salanpur block, Paschim Bardhaman district, West Bengal <p>Mining activities in Salanpur block of Paschim Bardhaman district of West Bengal has created an acute threat to the soil quality of surrounding agriculture fields, which in turn has affected the soil ecosystem in the long run. No matter how binding environmental laws, plans, and policies are, a well-informed society is more likely to conserve the land than an ignorant one. Large amount of fertile land are wiped out every year due to opencast coal mining. Harmful toxic metals settled down in agricultural field and abandoned areas. Thus, people residing in and around the mining areas often complain about low yield productivity of crops and decline in soil fertility of the surrounding land. The paper attempts to find out the causes of land degradation in Salanpur block as a result of declining soil quality due to open cast mine. The samples were analyzed for PH, total nitrogen (N), extractable zinc (Zn), extractable manganese (Mn), and extractable iron (Fe). Deficits of micronutrients in soils are usually assessed for the need to fertilize it with micronutrients, while, deficiencies develop below the optimum concentration, and toxicity develops above. The samples from the coal mine affected areas shows soil quality deficit condition. The increasing productivity of agriculture has soared the demand for secondary and micro nutrients in soil fertility management as a result of intensification of agriculture.</p> Sangita Mahata, Vishwambhar Nath Sharma Copyright (c) 2023 Sun, 31 Dec 2023 00:00:00 +0000 Prevalence and predictors anaemia among women of reproductive age in West Bengal, India: A cross-sectional study <p>Anaemia in women of reproductive age (WRA) can adversely affect maternal health and birth outcomes. Despite numerous policies and initiatives, anaemia among women continues to be a significant public health issue in India with West Bengal (WB) on the top. In order to establish priorities for public health policy, this study attempts to examine the factors associated with anaemia among WRA in West Bengal. Data was drawn from the National Family and Health Survey-5, 2019-21. A cross-sectional sample of 21408 women aged 15-49 years was analysed. Cross-tabulation was used to compute the prevalence of anaemia by background characteristics of women and Chi-squared test to check the bivariate association. Furthermore, binary logistic regression model was run to examine the contribution of the predictor variables on anaemia. Seven out of ten women in West Bengal were found anaemic. Women aged 40-49 years (Odds Ratio: 1.27, 95% Confidence Interval: 1.12-1.44, SC (OR: 1.24, 95% CI: 1.13-1.36), ST (OR: 1.72, 95% CI: 1.47-2.02), and Rural women (OR 1.26, 95% CI: 1.15-1.38); those who had no formal education (OR: 1.12, 95% CI: 0.92-1.28), belonged to the poorest households were (OR 1.34, 95% CI: 1.27-1.43), used groundwater for drinking (OR 1.13, 95% CI: 1.04-1.22), were underweight (OR 1.24, 95% CI: 1.12-1.37) and lactating (OR 1.11, 95% CI: 0.98-1.24); had three or more children (OR 1.15, 95% CI: 0.98-1.36) reported significantly higher likelihood of being anaemic. Age, education, household wealth, social group, source of drinking water, residence, nutritional status, maternity status was significantly associated with anaemia. Therefore, targeted interventions considering the discussed determinants may help in reducing anaemia.</p> Kaushalendra Prakash Goswami, Sumit Ram Copyright (c) 2023 Sun, 31 Dec 2023 00:00:00 +0000 Spatio-temporal change in healthcare infrastructure in rural India <p>Healthcare Infrastructure of developing counties have major flaws and shortfalls in accordance to their population, India being the most populous country with the biggest rural population in the world has such underperformances. India’s Healthcare system has been divided in 3 tiers which starts from Sub-Centre followed by PHC and lastly CHC. This paper attempts to study the regional distribution of these healthcare centres in rural India. The study reveals the unequal distribution of these healthcare centres and them providing their services to more population than the norms. The average area covered by these centres have decreased from 2002 to 2011, the population per centres has increased in the same period of 2002 to 2011. Even though there was a significant increase in these centres after the implementation of NRHM but they weren’t proportional to the population requirements.</p> Mukesh Kumar Copyright (c) 2023 Sun, 31 Dec 2023 00:00:00 +0000 Evaluating the status of Parvati Arga Ramsar wetland in Gonda district, Uttar Pradesh, India <p>Wetlands are one of the ecotonal ecosystems in the biosphere. They provide diverse ecosystem services and habitats to a multitude of flora and fauna and are considered hotspots of biodiversity. The globally recognized <em>Ramsar Convention</em> signed in 1972 provides a scientific framework for the conservation and wise use of wetlands. Parvati-Arga wetland is a pair of two oxbow lakes protected as a bird sanctuary and is also a designated Ramsar site. It lies in the <em>Saryu par</em> flood plains in Gonda, Uttar Pradesh. This study deals with providing a comprehensive profile of the biological diversity of this wetland, identification of major threats, and also tries to uncover the lacunas of previous studies. Relevant literature has been used in this study from diverse sources like government reports, and research papers accessed from different platforms. Observations of the authors during the field visit have also been incorporated into the study to some extent. The study finds that this wetland is biologically very rich and provides habitat to many endangered species. There are many threats to the site like contamination caused by agricultural runoff, illegal fishing, and disturbance to the ecosystem caused by the grazing animals. Certain aspects of the wetlands such as land use/cover, wetland condition index, water quality analysis, and its hydro-geomorphological profile have not been studied.</p> Shivam Verma, Srabani Sanyal, Prashant Kushwaha Copyright (c) 2023 Sun, 31 Dec 2023 00:00:00 +0000 Gender disparity and pattern of literacy: An analysis of scheduled tribes of Jharkhand, India <p>Gender gap in literacy is the result of gender-based discrimination that creates barriers for girls, and women to enjoy their equal human right. Gender prejudice results gender discrimination from childhood. In Jharkhand, the literacy of tribal population is only 57.1% which is less than the national tribal average. There exists a gap of 21% in male-female literacy of tribal population of Jharkhand, which is the matter of urgent concern to talk about female education to reduce disparity in literacy which ultimately promotes overall development of women in the society especially for the tribal communities. Hence, this paper attempts to find out the district wise regional variation in disparity in literacy and pattern of literacy among the tribal population of Jharkhand. The present study reveals that majority of the districts have low female literacy and shows the high gender gap in literacy and reasons like poverty, low educational level of parents, week family structure and domestics problem which negatively effects the value of education. The study uses, secondary data from Census of India, 2011 and modified Sopher’s Disparity</p> Alka Rani, Sanjay Kumar Copyright (c) 2023 Sun, 31 Dec 2023 00:00:00 +0000 Assessment of air pollution level in Sonbhadra district using air quality index <p>Air pollution constitutes the most significant issue affecting India. A multitude of individuals are experiencing various ailments as a direct consequence of air pollution. The Air Quality Index (AQI) is employed as a means to report the state of air pollution, providing a daily assessment of air quality. The examination of air quality serves the purpose of assessing the atmospheric condition in a given location. To facilitate this, the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) has established monitoring centers in two areas within the Sonbhadra district, namely Annpara colony and Renusagar colony. A comprehensive investigation spanning six years (2017-2022) has been conducted for the Sonbhadra district, examining the annual and seasonal fluctuations in the Air Quality Index. The data utilized for this analysis was obtained from CPCB and enabled the calculation of annual figures by determining the average mean. Moreover, the pollution situation in the city was evaluated using the exceedance factor (EF). The examination of these figures reveals that the city exhibits a higher concentration of PM 10 pollutants. Conversely, the levels of NO<sub>2</sub> and SO<sub>2</sub> are relatively well-regulated. Notably, the year 2018 was marked by the highest levels of pollution, while 2020 witnessed the lowest pollution levels. These findings suggest that the pollution prevention measures implemented in the city over the years have been effective.</p> Himanshu Shekher, Sushil Kumar Yadav, Pankaj Kumar Yadav, Shalini Tiwari, Kaushalendra Prakash Goswami Copyright (c) 2023 Sun, 31 Dec 2023 00:00:00 +0000 A study on passenger's satisfaction towards various depots of Gujarat state road transport services in Saurashra region <p>The study investigates the quality of services by the Gujarat State Road Transport Corporation (GSRTC) in Gujarat, particularly in the Saurashtra region. It aims to gain a comprehensive understanding of the factors that influence the quality of services provided by GSRTC and evaluate the level of satisfaction among passengers availing these services. The study involves extensive sampling from various GSRTC depots in Saurashtra to ensure a diverse and representated sample and to identify areas where improvement is urgently needed. Thus, the research is essential for evaluating public transportation effectiveness and guiding future service enhancements.</p> Jagdish Kanzariya , Hitesh Shukla Copyright (c) 2023 Sun, 31 Dec 2023 00:00:00 +0000 Rural tourism-an opportunity to achieve sustainable development goals: A study in Indian context <p>According to UNWTO 2012 (United Nation World Tourism Organization), “Tourism has a great potential to accelerate progress across the Sustainable Development Goals” (SDGs).&nbsp; In India, rural tourism is one of the modern and emerging concepts, gaining popularity for playing a significant role in rural development. This is an alternative livelihood through which local people are getting social, economic, and cultural benefits. And, the Ministry of Tourism is also focusing on creating rural tourism projects. At present, Govt. of India has 107 rural tourism projects in 29 States which is an initiative towards <em>AtmaNirbhar Bharat</em> and Sustainable Development in rural areas of India. Many goals of Sustainable Development are directly and indirectly related to the objectives of rural tourism and the Govt. of India wants to rejuvenate this to gain self-economic growth after the COVID-19 outbreak. So, this paper focused on how sustainable development goals like gender equality; decent work, economic growth, etc. are connected with rural tourism. This paper is based on content analysis techniques and secondary data like reports from the Ministry of Tourism, reports on evaluation cum impact study of rural tourism projects (2011), India Tourism Statistics (2022), National Sample Survey Office report, and National Tourism Policies, Internet and Mobile Association of India report on homestay. The paper provides an overview of the connection of rural tourism and SDGs and how it is helping to achieve some sustainable development goals in India.</p> Amita Halder, Sanjay Kumar Copyright (c) 2023 Sun, 31 Dec 2023 00:00:00 +0000