8 Indian beaches have received the coveted 'Blue Flag certification', an eco-level tag awarded by the Foundation for Environmental Education for safe, clean and environment friendly beaches and sustainable boating tourism operators. The beaches that bagged the certification are Kappad beach in Kerala’s Kozhikode district, Shivrajpur in Gujarat, Goghla in Diu, Kasarkod and Padubidri in Karnataka, Golden beach in Odisha, Rushikonda in Andhra Pradesh and Radhanagar Beach in Andaman and Nicobar Islands. Union Minister of Environment, Forests and Climate Change Prakash Javadekar made the announcement while stating that 'no blue flag nation has ever been awarded for 8 beaches in a single attempt'. The jury, which comprises of members of the UNEP, UNWTO among others, also gave India a third prize under 'international best practices’ for controlling pollution in coastal areas. To be considered for the prestigious honour, 33 criteria including bathing water quality have to be met.