1.President appoints Ms. Kiran Bedi Lt. Governor of Puducherry
The President of India has been pleased to appoint Ms. Kiran Bedi, to be the Lt. Governor of Puducherry with effect from the date she assumes charges of her office.
2.PM offers prayers, addresses gathering at Bhai Ganga Singh Sabha Gurudwara, Tehran
The Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi, paid respects to the Guru Granth Sahib at the Bhai Ganga Singh Sabha Gurudwara, shortly after arriving in Tehran this evening.
He was presented with a Saropa and a Talwar.
Addressing the gathering, the Prime Minister complimented the Sikh community in Tehran for keeping our rich heritage and traditions alive for the younger generations.
He said Indians believe in Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam – the whole world is our family – and therefore assimilate with everyone easily.
The Prime Minister said the occasion of the 350th birth anniversary of Guru Gobind Singh would be celebrated both in India and other parts of the world; and would be leveraged to highlight and generate greater awareness among the younger generation about the martyrdom of the Gurus, and the message of the Holy Guru Granth Sahib.
3.PM’s visit to Iran
In a series of tweets on his Twitter Account, the Prime Minister said:
“I am looking forward to my visit to Iran today and tomorrow, at the invitation of President Rouhani.
India and Iran enjoy civilizational ties and have shared interest in the peace, security, stability and prosperity of the region.
My meetings with President Rouhani and Hon’ble Supreme Leader of Iran will provide an opportunity to advance our strategic partnership.
Enhancing connectivity, trade, investments, energy partnership, culture and people to people contacts would be our priority.
I also look forward to the conclusion of the Chahbahar Agreement during my visit.
I will visit Gurudwara in Tehran and inaugurate an International Conference on ‘retrospect and prospect’ of India and Iran relations.”
4.Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar Visits Oman
The Defence Minister Shri Manohar Parrikar paid an official visit to the Sultanate of Oman from 20 to 22 May 2016 at the invitation of H.E. Bader Bin Saud Bin Harib Al Busaidi, Minister Responsible for Defense Affairs of Oman.
Shri Parrikar reiterated the high importance that India attaches to its strategic partnership with Oman. He conveyed his appreciation at the continued support rendered by Oman for the Operational Turnaround (OTR) of Indian Navy ships for anti-piracy patrols as well as technical support for landing and over flight of Indian Air Force aircraft.
Four Memorandum of Understanding (MOUs)/agreements were signed during the visit. These are:
• MOU on Defence Cooperation between the Ministry of Defense of Sultanate of Oman and Ministry of Defence of Republic of India;
• MOU between the Royal Oman Police (Coast Guard) and the Indian Coast Guard in the field of Marine Crime Prevention at Sea;
• MOU between the Government of the Sultanate of Oman and the Government of the Republic of India on Maritime Issues; and
• Protocol between the Government of the Sultanate of Oman represented by Royal Air Force of Oman and the Government of India represented by the Indian Air Force on Flight Safety information Exchange.
5.President meets Award Winning School Teachers attending ‘In-Residence’ Programme at Rashtrapati Bhavan
The President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee met twelve Award Winning School Teachers from States/Union Territories attending ‘In-Residence’ Programme at Rashtrapati Bhavan today (May 23, 2016).
This is the first such ‘In-Residence’ Programme for school teachers. Similar programmes exist for writers, artists, grass root innovators, NIT students and inspired teachers.
Speaking on the occasion, the President said that all the participants of the ‘In-Residence’ programme should strive continuously for achieving higher goals. For them sky is the limit.
He said that no civilizational progress could have been possible if teachers did not give their wisdom to society on the basis of which progress takes place.
He stated that our tradition is that of ‘Guru-Shishya Parampara’. He emphasized that teachers are the most important factor in nation building.
Also present on the occasion was Secretary, Department of School Education and Literacy, Ministry of HRD who said that teachers are central to any educational system. He emphasized on three areas relating to education i.e. improving access, equity and improving the quality of education.
6.Remarks by Prime Minister at Chabahar Connectivity event (May 23, 2016)
A famous poet of Persia, Hafez once said:
रोज़े- हिज्रो-शबे-फ़ुर्क़ते-यार आख़र शुद
ज़दम इन फ़ालो-गुज़श्त अख़्तरो कार आख़र शुद्
[Meaning: Days of separation are over; night of wait is coming to an end; Our friendship will stay forever.]
Iran, Afghanistan and India are deeply aware of the richness and reality of our ancient links. Through centuries, art and culture, ideas and knowledge, language and traditions have formed a common bond between us.
Even through turmoil of history, our societies never lost touch with each other. Today, we meet to write new chapters in our engagement.
Excellencies, The Agreement on the establishment of a Trilateral Transport and Transit Corridor signed just a while ago can alter the course of history of this region.
It is a new foundation of convergence between our three nations. The corridor would spur unhindered flow of commerce throughout the region. Inflow of capital and technology could lead to new industrial infrastructure in Chahbahar.
This would include gas based fertilizer plants, petrochemicals, pharmaceuticals and IT. The key arteries of the corridor would pass through the Chahbahar port of Iran. It’s very location, on the mouth of Gulf of Oman, is of great strategic significance. Afghanistan will get an assured, effective, and a more friendly route to trade with the rest of the world. The arc of economic benefit from this agreement would extend beyond our three nations. Its reach could extend to the depths of the Central Asian countries. When linked with the International North South Transport Corridor, it would touch South Asia at one end and Europe at another. And, studies show that as compared to the traditional sea routes, it could bring down the cost and time of the cargo trade to Europe by about 50%. Over time, we could even look to connect it with the strong sea and land based routes that India has developed with the Indian Ocean Region and South East Asia.
The world of 21st century offers unique opportunities.But, it also poses its own set of challenges.Today, the nature of global engagement requires an attitude more suitable to this century, not the mindset of the century gone by. Today, the watch-words of international tiesare trust not suspicion; cooperation not dominance; inclusivity not exclusion. This is also the guiding philosophy and driving spirit of the Chahbahar Agreement. This will be a corridor of peace and prosperity for our peoples. Motives of economic growth, and empowerment would drive it. It will build our security without making others vulnerable. It would break barriers among our nations and encourage new benchmarks of people-to-people contacts. And, help us to eventually build what we all desire and deserve – a friendly and healthy neighbourhood.
The world around us is changing in fundamental ways. And, the lack of comprehensive connectivity is not the only challenge that limits our national growth. Political turmoil and undercurrents of economic stress continue to spread in West Asia. In the Indo-Pacific,rise a mix of political competition and economic opportunities is putting pressure on the existing Asian order. Global economy is yet to fully come out of uncertainty and weakness. Our present growth and future prosperity is under threat from the spread of radical ideas and physical terror. Amidst this landscape, our three countries are blessed with the most potent resource—our youth. Our three nations are estimated to have more than 60 percent of their population under 30 years of age. They are an asset in our national and regional development. We want them to walk the road to knowledge and skills; industry and enterprise. And, not fall victim to the path of guns and violence. I am confident that economic fruits of the Chahbahar Agreement will expand trade, attract investment, build infrastructure, develop industry and create jobs for our youth. The Agreement will strengthen our ability to stand in mutual support against those whose only motto is to maim and kill the innocents. Its success will be a positive vote for peace and stability in the region.
It is my strong belief that trade and transit routes should only be a starting point of our journey to greater connectivity. In my vision, the full spectrum of connectivity agenda between Iran, Afghanistan and India should span:
• from culture to commerce;
• from traditions to technology;
• from Investments to IT;
• from services to strategy; and
• from people to politics.
In a way, it is a pledge to:
• Realize the imperative of better connectivity;
• Establish peace and create stability;
• Build economic prosperity and engineer new trade ties;
• Curb radicalism and remove shadows of terror; and
• Break barriers and spread sweetness of familiarity among our people.
History will look back at this effort with nothing but approval and admiration.
I compliment Excellencies Rouhani and Ghani for their leadership in guiding this effort.
Thank you all. Thank you very much.
7.India’s Reusable Launch Vehicle-Technology Demonstrator (RLV-TD), Successfully Flight Tested
ISRO successfully flight tested India’s first winged body aerospace vehicle operating in hypersonic flight regime today.
In this experimental mission, the HS9 solid rocket booster carrying RLV-TD lifted off from the First Launch Pad at Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Sriharikota at 07:00 hr IST. After a successful flight of 91.1 second, HS9 burn out occurred, following which both HS9 and RLV-TD mounted on its top coasted to a height of about 56 km. At that height, RLV-TD separated from HS9 booster and further ascended to a height of about 65 km.
From that peak altitude of 65 km, RLV-TD began its descent followed by atmospheric re-entry at around Mach 5 (five times the speed of sound). The vehicle’s Navigation, Guidance and Control system accurately steered the vehicle during this phase for safe descent. After successfully surviving a high temperatures of re-entry with the help of its Thermal Protection System (TPS), RLV-TD successfully glided down to the defined landing spot over Bay of Bengal, at a distance of about 450 km from Sriharikota, thereby fulfilling its mission objectives. The vehicle was successfully tracked during its flight from ground stations at Sriharikota and a shipborne terminal. Total flight duration from launch to landing of this mission of the delta winged RLV-TD, lasted for about 770 seconds.
In this flight, critical technologies such as autonomous navigation, guidance & control, reusable thermal protection system and re-entry mission management have been successfully validated.
ISRO acknowledges the support of Indian Coast Guard and National Institute of Ocean Technology (NIOT) for the mid-sea wind measurement and shipborne telemetry respectively in this mission.
8.INS Tarmugli Joins the Indian Navy
The Indian Navy today commissioned the highly maneuverable Fast Attack Craft INS Tarmugli at the hands of Vice Admiral HCS Bisht AVSM, Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Eastern Naval Command at a formal ceremony held at Naval Dockyard, Visakhapatnam. INS Tarmugli is being based in Visakhapatnam under the Naval Officer-in-Charge (Andhra Pradesh) and would be deployed for coastal patrol and surveillance operations along the East Coast of India.
Built by M/s Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers Ltd (GRSE), INS Tarmugli is the first Follow-on Water Jet Fast Attack Craft (WJFAC), is an improved version of WJFAC, earlier constructed by GRSE. Conceived, designed and built indigenously, the commissioning of this ship completes the addition of another chapter to the nation’s ‘Make in India’ initiative and indigenisation efforts in the field of warship design and construction.
Named after a picturesque island in the Andaman group, the 320-tonne INS Tarmugli, measuring 48 meters in length, can achieve speeds in excess of 30 knots. The ship is manned by a team comprising four officers and 41 sailors with Commander Sreejith S Nair at the helm as Commanding Officer.
The ship is capable of operating in shallow waters at high speeds and is equipped with enhanced fire power. Built for extended coastal and offshore surveillance and patrol the warship is fitted with advanced MTU engines, water jet propulsion and the latest communication equipment.
The ships armament consists of a 30 mm CRN 91 gun manufactured by Ordnance Factory Medak. An electronic day-night fire control system namely Stabilised Optronic Pedestal (SOP) manufactured by Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL) controls the gun. The ship is also equipped with two 12.7 mm heavy machine guns (HMG) and multiple medium machine guns, besides shoulder-launched Igla surface-to-air missiles to combat aerial threats.
9.108 Villages Electrified last week ; 7,874 Villages Electrified till date under DDUGJY
108 villages have been electrified across the country during last week (from 16th to 22nd May 2016) under Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti Yojna (DDUGJY). Out of these electrified villages, 6 villages belong to Arunachal Pradesh , 26 in Assam, 31 in Jharkhand, 2 in Rajasthan, 8 in Madhya Pradesh , 3 in Uttar Pradesh , 2 in Bihar, 3 in Chhattisgarh, 26 in Odisha , and 1 in Himachal Pradesh . The progress of ongoing electrification process can be tracked on http://garv.gov.in/dashboard
10.India’s policy towards China is ‘expanding areas of cooperation, reducing differences’, says President
The President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee addressed the Indian community in China at Guangzhou today (May 24, 2016), the opening day of his visit to China.
Addressing the Indian community, the President said India’s policy towards China is expanding areas of cooperation, reducing differences. Frequent bilateral visits reflect expanding relations between the two great nations. There has been phenomenal progress in bilateral relations since 1990. Trade between the two countries has increased from US $ 2.9 billion in 2000 to more than US $ 71 billion today. There is immense potential for growth in trade, investment and mutual economic cooperation.
The President said India and China are closely cooperating with each other in most multilateral fora. India, a founding member of WTO supported the membership of China from day one. It argued in WTO that it is wrong to keep China with its vast population out of the WTO. India and China both are founding members of G-20. As the most advanced emerging economies, they are making major contributions to world growth.
The President said if 2.5 billion people of India and China come together and walk together, it will be a great event. Intensifying cooperation in trade, investment, development experience, sharing of best practices and cooperating in all areas is the biggest guarantor of peace, development and prosperity. This will ensure the onward march to progress of both nations.
The President said members of the Indian Community are unofficial ambassadors of India in the country in which they live. They carry part of India in their hearts at all times. India is proud of its diaspora. He invited the Indian diaspora to contribute its best to the gigantic task underway of transforming lives of billions of Indians.
11.India signs loan agreement with world bank for IBRD loan of US$ 100 million for ‘Karnataka Urban Water Supply Modernization project’
The Loan and Project Agreements for World Bank (IBRD) assistance of US$ 100 million for the Karnataka Urban Water Supply Modernization project were signed between Government of India/Government of Karnataka and the World Bank here today.
12.Centre committed to Employment Security , Wage Security and Social Security to every Worker:Shri Bandaru Dattatreya
Amendnment to bonus act doubled benefit amount with enhanced reach
The Governments paramount priority is the Welfare of Workers and its endeavor is to achieve Employment Security, Wage Security and Social Security to every Worker especially the Unorganised workers who constitute 93% of our workforce. This was stated by Shri Bandaru Dattatreya, the Union Minister of State(IC) for Labour and Employment here today while addressing a Press Conference. The Minister said that during the last two years for the benefit of work force the Government has amended the Bonus Act increasing the eligibility limit from Rs. 10,000 to Rs. 21,000 and benefit ceiling from Rs. 3500 to Rs. 7000, Minimum Pension of Rs. 1000 per month in perpetuity which is benefiting more than 20 lakh pensioners. The Minister said, the Government has announced interest @ 8.8% to EPF subscribers for the year 2015-16 which is the highest rate of interest for any saving instrument in the country. Further, our Govt. on March, 29th, 2016 in a historic decision decided to credit interest to 9.23 Crore inoperative accounts of EPFO which was stopped by the UPA Government in February, 2011. A new and pragmatic scheme has been launched for eliminating the social evil of Bonded Labour he added.
He said ,the Ministry of Labour and Employment have initiated process of reforming the archaic labour laws to create a conducive, cordial and harmonious environment in the country. Towards this Ministry is simplifying the 43 Labour Laws into 4 Labour Codes which aims to amalgamate and rationalize the provisions of these 43 Labour Laws : These are Labour Code on Wages,Labour Code on Industrial Relations, Labour Code on Social Security & Welfare and Labour Code on Safety & Working Conditions.
To achieve this huge objective, tripartite consultations are held from time to time for consensus. Two of these codes have been finalized and necessary approvals are being sought, the Minister added.
On Reforms Through Technology ,The Minister said a unified Web Portal ‘Shram Suvidha Portal’ was laubnched on 16.10.2014, to bring transparency and accountability in enforcement of labour laws and ease complexity of compliance. It caters to four major Organizations under the Ministry of Labour, namely Office of Chief Labour Commissioner (Central), Directorate General of Mines Safety, Employees’ Provident Fund Organization; and Employees’ State Insurance Corporation.
The Minister said eradication of Child Labour is a priority and to address the issue Government has proposed to amend the Child Labour (Prohibition & Regulation) Act, 1986 with the objective of complete prohibition on employment of children below 14 years and linking the age of prohibition with the age under Right of Children to Free & Compulsory Education, Act, 2009. The amendment also intends to make the punishment for employers more stringent and make the offence cognizable for employers on employing any child or adolescent in contravention of the Act.
The Minister said that the Government is implementing National Career Service (NCS) Project for transforming and strengthening the public employment services in the country with an aim to bring job seekers, employers and training providers on a common platform with efficient use of information technology. National Career Service (NCS) Project aims to address the gaps in the employment market by strategic interventions and partnership with leading institutions and organizations. Central Ministries and State Governments have also been involved in making the NCS Portal (www.ncs.gov.in) a vibrant platform.
The NCS Portal dedicated to the nation in July, 2015 has successfully registered over 3.5 crore candidates and all the 9 lakh establishments having a Labour Identification Number are also registered.
The Minister also spoke about two Social security organizations The Employees’ State Insurance Corporation providing comprehensive medical care and cash benefits in the contingencies of Sickness and Employees Provident Fund Organization providing social security to the organized workforce of the country.
13.Press Conference by Dr. Najma Heptulla on two years achievements of Minority Affairs Ministry
In 2015-16 Ministry spent over 20% higher than in 2013-14
The Ministry of Minority Affairs has made consistent efforts in the last two years to fulfill the agenda set in the manifesto for minorities and achieved them by formulating new schemes/programmes and reorienting the ongoing schemes. Dr. Najma Heptulla, the Union Minister of Minority Affairs said this while interacting with media on two years achievements of the Ministry of Minority Affairs.
The whole focus of the Ministry revolved around the vision and mission “Sabka Saath Sabka Vikaas”. Going by the National priority, Ministry has taken many new initiatives to strengthen the efforts towards education of minorities and economic empowerment through Skill Development.
The Minister said in fact in the last financial year i.e. 2015-16, the expenditure was more than 20% higher than in 2013-14, which is a significant rise in just 2 years. Moreover, in 2015-16, for the first time in the history of the Ministry, there was no cut imposed in the earmarked Plan budget at Revised Estimate (RE) Stage and it was maintained at the original level of Budget Estimate (BE) i.e. Rs.3712.78 Crore. Ministry spent about 98% of the entire Plan budget in 2015-16. Further, Government has increased the Plan Budget of the Ministry to Rs.3800 Crore for 2016-17, an increase of more than Rs. 168 Crore over the 2015-16 expenditure level, which is again a significant rise.
The Minister said that this is to address development gaps at micro level. In addition to this Ministry’s budget 15% of budget of the implementing Ministries of PM’s 15 point programme is also earmarked for the minorities.
Referring to Educational empowerment, the Minister informed that five minority students with support of the scheme have made it to the Indian Civil Services in the recently declared results. Three of them are Muslim, one Sikh and one Buddhist. She said Rs.2011.82 crore were released for various Scholarship schemes during 2014-15 against Rs.1739.55 crore during 2013-14. i.e. 15.7% more funds were released by the present Government in the first year of its tenure itself for the educational empowerment of the minorities. During 2014-15 about 46% girls benefitted under all scholarship schemes.
On economic empowerment she said that educational cum livelihood scheme ‘Nai Manzil’’ for has been received very well. The World Bank recognizing the concept of the scheme not only gave loan to the tune of US $ 50 million but also recommended it for other countries with similar requirements. This new initiative of the present Government formulated and launched on 8th August, 2015 aims to benefit the minority youths who do not have a formal school leaving certificate, i.e., those in the category of school-dropouts or educated in the community education institutions like theMadarsas, in order to provide them formal education and skills, and enable them to seek better employment in the organized sector and thus to equip them for better lives.
Scheme has been approved with the cost of Rs. 650 Crore for five years. 50% funding will come from the World Bank. This is for the first time in the history of minority welfare programmes when World Bank has agreed to support such a programme.
Another new ambitious initiative of the present Government, “USTTAD (Upgrading the Skills and Training in Traditional Arts/ Crafts for Development)” was formally launched on 14th May, 2015 at Varanasi. The scheme aims at setting standards of traditional skills, design development, capacity building and updating the traditional skills of master craftsmen and artisans, documentation and preservation. It also aims to engage the trained master craftsmen/artisans in training of minority youths in various specific traditional arts/crafts.
About Seekho aur Kamao (Learn & Earn), the Minister said , in conformity with the priority of the present Government for “Skilled India” and “Make in India”, the skill development initiative for minorities “Seekho aur Kamao (Learn & Earn)”, has been strengthened and expanded and the outlay has been increased by almost Eleven times (over the level of 2013-14) by the present Government and Rs.192.45 crore were allocated in 2015-16 for training of 1,13,000 minority youth. Out of this, about Rs. 191.96 Crore (more than 99%) has been sanctioned for training of about 1.23 lakh trainees in various States.
The number of minority youths trained since the inception of the scheme and the funds earmarked by the present Government, as enlisted clearly indicate the shift in focus:
|Financial Year||Achievement (Number of minority youths trained)||Funds released (Rs. in Crore)|
Elaborating on Multi-sectoral Development Programme – Jan Vikaas Karyakram,the Minister said this area development programme, for the construction of basic amenities and infrastructure is implemented in identified 710 Minority Concentration Blocks (MCBs) and 66 Minority Concentration Towns (MCTs).Further, clusters of contiguous minority concentration villages are also covered. In the first two years of this Government 18.4% more funds were sanctioned for this project than the last two years of the earlier Government. In fact in 2015-16, Government gave a major thrust to this project when it sanctioned a whopping 46% more funds than in 2014-15.
During 2014-15 and 2015-16, construction of 51 ITIs, 2 Polytechnics, 5314 Additional Class Rooms (ACRs), 559 school buildings, 10 Degree colleges, 215 Hostels and 1456 Aanganwadi Centers has been approved.
On Women Empowerment , the Minister said that Ministry implements an exclusive scheme “Nai Roshni” for Leadership Development of Minority Women with an aim to empower and instill confidence in women by providing knowledge, tools and techniques for interacting with the Government systems, banks and intermediaries at all levels.
On Concessional Loans to Minorities, the Minister said for the first time in the history of NMDFC, the present Government on 10.02.2015, doubled the Authorized Share Capital of NMDFC i.e. from Rs. 1500 crore to Rs. 3000 crore in 2015 and has also revised the share holding pattern to 73:26:1 from 65:26:9 for the Central Government, State Governments/UT Administrations and Institutions/Individuals respectively.
The Minister also spoke in detail on Maulana Azad Education Foundation (MAEF),Waqf Management and Haj Pilgrimage.
14.National Capital Goods Policy
The Union Cabinet, chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has given its approval for National Capital Goods Policy. This is first ever policy for Capital Goods sector with a clear objective of increasing production of capital goods from Rs.2,30,000 crore in 2014-15 to Rs.7,50,000 crore in 2025 and raising direct and indirect employment from the current 8.4 million to 30 million.
The policy envisages increasing exports from the current 27 percent to 40 percent of production.
It will increase the share of domestic production in India’s demand from 60 percent to 80 percent thus making India a net exporter of capital goods. The policy also aims to facilitate improvement in technology depth across sub-sectors, increase skill availability, ensure mandatory standards and promote growth and capacity building of MSMEs.
The Policy will help in realising the vision of ‘Building India as the World class hub for Capital Goods’. It will also play a pivotal role in overall manufacturing as the pillar of strength to the vision of ‘Make in India’.
The objectives of the policy will be met by the Department of Heavy Industry in a time bound manner through obtaining approval for schemes as per the roadmap of policy interventions.
15.Union HRD Minister Launches Bharatavani Portal
Bharatavani Becomes the Largest Online Repository of Dictionaries in India on its Very First Day
The Union HRD Minister, Smt Smriti Zubin Iani launched the multilingual knowledge portal www.bharatvani.in at Lucknow today. While launching the app the Minister said that under the Prime Minister Shri Modi’s Digital India Mission, Bharatavani App will perform the task of bringing about digital revolution in the county. The Government’s mission is to showcase the Indian culture and heritage to the world through the medium of technology.
This project is in line with the HRD Ministry’s efforts to not only ensure universalization of education but also towards creation of a knowledge society in the digital age. The Central Institute of Indian Languages (CIIL), Mysuru is implementing this ambitious project of MHRD.
One Point language resource : Bharatavani is the first knowledge portal of its kind in India which focuses on becoming a single point source for multiple language learning, content and technology.
Given India’s diversity, Bharatavani is an attempt to bring the people of India under one portal, its goal being to bridge the Digital and language divide, with the idea to publish as well as involve people in the Open Knowledge movement.
Window to language diversity: Government of India with the launch of this multilingual portal reiterates its commitment to the protection, preservation and inclusion of all Indian languages through technological development without discrimination. India’s diversity includes a treasure trove of knowledge and indigenous culture and the Government will take all measures required to develop the spread of Indian languages across communities and cultures.
Fostering National Integration: By its very nature, Bharatavani aims to foster national integration by emphasizing on multilingual and cross-lingual learning tools and technologies. Many cross-lingual grammar books, learning courses, will not only enable learning of languages but their transliteration will enable us to learn another language instantly. This can be experienced by way of the Bharatavani App, which has been so designed to enable users to read any language in any script through any language interface.
Catalyst to Language Technology Development Technology Development for Indian Languages will be made much easier with Bharatavani turnout to be India’s largest language Corpus. Digitization of hundreds of multilingual, multi-topic dictionaries, will provide Bharatavani a massive data set of linguistic terminologies, thereby leveraging research and development. Bharatavani aims to establish itself as a single point online window to knowledge in and about Indian Languages, dictionaries, language IT tools and textbooks.
Bharatavani Multi-lingual App: Unique multiple source of worlds
Alongwith the Bharatavani portal, MHRD has also launched the Bharatavani Multi-lingual App called Bharatavani. This App will enable users to search for one language text in another language as well as get meanings in different languages. Currently the App has 35 multilingual Dictionaries and MHRD aims to extend it to 250 dictionaries in a years time. This App, on the day of its launch becomes India’sfirst and largest multilingual dictionary. Our endeavour is to make it the world’s biggest online multilingual dictionary source.
Salient features : Bharatavani makes available knowledge already published by Government and publicly funded institutions all over the country and puts its across for free and fair public usage, by deploying a robust, interactive, user friendly web tools. Its content is protected by fair usage clauses under the Indian Copyright Act.
The Bharatavani Portal would publish the content in the following main sections:
Significantly, more than 130 Dictionaries, Glossaries and Terminology books have been posted on the web portal. These dictionaries are available in text and PDF formats.
Many institutions both at National and State level have declared their support to this initiative and have already signed MOUs with Bharatavani. All content in print and other formats will be completely digitized and put onto the portal in the form of searchable text. The portal has been launched in 22 scheduled languages, which eventually will be extended to 100 more languages
16.EESL Distributes LED Bulbs Under “UJALA” in the Range of Rs. 75-95 across 16 States
The LED bulbs under Government of India’ s Unnat Jyoti by Affordable LEDs for All (UJALA) scheme are being distributed across 16 States in the country in the price range of Rs 75- 95. The project, executed by Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL), under the administration of Ministry of Power, procures high quality LED bulbs from leading manufacturers through a transparent bidding process. In the latest round of procurement, which ended on March 31, 2016, the lowest procurement cost was Rs. 54.90 (exclusive of taxes and administrative costs).
The target of the programme is to replace all the 77 crore incandescent bulbs sold in India by LEDs. This will result in reduction of 20,000 MW load, energy savings of 100 billion kWh and Green House Gas (GHG) emissions savings of 80 million tons every year. The annual saving in electricity bills of consumers will be Rs. 40,000 crore, considering average tariff of Rs. 4 per kWh.
17.Shri Nitin Gadkari dedicates NIRBHAYA buses to the public
In an attempt to provide safe and secure transport to women, the Minister of Road Transport & Highways and Shipping, Shri Nitin Gadkari dedicated 20 buses of the Rajasthan State Road Transport Corporation, with IT enabled safety measures to the public, at a function in the capital today. As an initiative of the Ministry of Road Transport & Highways under the NIRBHAYA Scheme, 10 luxury buses, 10 general buses have been provided with Vehicle Tracking System (VTS), CCTV cameras and Panic Buttons on every seat to provide immediate help to women passengers in distress.
18.Cabinet gives ex-post facto approval to the Amendments in the Constitution (Scheduled Tribes) Order, 1950 to modify the list of Scheduled Tribes (STs) in Assam, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Tamil Nadu, Tripura and Puducherry
The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has given its approval for introduction of two Bills in the Parliament for certain amendments in the Constitution (Scheduled Tribes) Order, 1950 so as to modify the list of Scheduled Tribes in respect of five States, namely, Assam, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Tamil Nadu, Tripura and identification of new communities in the Union Territory of Puducherry.
The following communities as per approved modalities were found to be eligible for their inclusion in, exclusion from and other modifications in the list of Scheduled Tribes:
|Sl.No.||State / Union Territory||Inclusion / Exclusion / Rectification / Identification||Community|
|1.||Assam||Inclusion||i) Boro, Boro Kachari,
Bodo, Bodo Kachari
ii) Karbi (Mikir)
Rectification of Hindi Version of the Notification
|iii) Bhuinya, Bhuiyan, Bhuyan
iv) Dhanuhar / Dhanuwar
vi) Saunra, Saonra
|3.||Jharkhand||Inclusion||viii) Bhogta, Deshwari, Ganjhu, Dautalbandi (Dwalbandi), Patbandi, Raut, Maajhia, Khairi (Kheri)
|4.||Tamil Nadu||Inclusion|| x) Malayali Gounder
|6.||Puducherry||Identification (First Order)||xiii) Irular (including Villi and Vettaikaran)|
After the Bill becomes as Act, members of the communities included in the list of Scheduled Tribes will be able to derive benefits meant for Scheduled Tribes under the existing schemes. Some of the major schemes of this kind include Post Matric Scholarship, National Overseas Scholarship, National Fellowship, Top Class Education, Concessional Loans from National Scheduled Tribes Finance and Development Corporation, Hostels for ST boys and girls etc. In addition to above, they will also be entitled to benefits of reservation in services and admission to educational institutions.
Consequently, existing entries in list of Scheduled Castes (SCs) in case of Jharkhand and Other Backward Classes (OBCs) / Most Backward Classes (MBCs) of Central / State lists would be modified.
The Constitution of India provides certain privileges / concessions to the members of Scheduled Tribes which are notified under the provisions of Article 342 of the Constitution of India. First list of Scheduled Tribes in relation to a State or Union Territory is to be issued by a notified Order of the President after having consultation with the State Government concerned. Any subsequent inclusion in or exclusion from the list of Scheduled Tribes can be effected through an Act of Parliament as envisaged under clause (2) of Article 342.
The Government approved Modalities in June, 1999 as amended in June 2002, for considering proposals in regard to modifications in the lists of Scheduled Tribes and Scheduled Castes. According to the approved Modalities, amending legislation to the concerned Constitution Order is proposed only in respect of such proposals of the concerned State Government / Union Territory Administration, which have been agreed to both by the Registrar General of India (RGI) as well as the National Commission for Scheduled Tribes (NCST).
19.Smt Maneka Sanjay Gandhi releases Draft Model Rules under Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015
The Union Minister of Women and Child Development, Smt Maneka Sanjay Gandhi released the Draft Model Rules under the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015 in New Delhi today. The draft rules have been released for stakeholder comments and suggestions. The Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act 2015 has come into force from 15th January, 2016 repealing the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2000.
The Act is a comprehensive law with strengthened provisions for children in conflict with law and those in need of care and protection. Some of the key features include: special provisions for children who commit heinous offences in the age group of 16-18 years; inclusion of new offences committed against children, which were so far not adequately covered under any other law, such as giving intoxicating liquor or narcotic drug or tobacco products to children, sale and procurement of children for any purpose, corporal punishment in child care institutions, etc.; mandatory registration of all Child Care Institutions with punishment in case of non-compliance; and giving statutory status to the Central Adoption Resource Authority (CARA) to enable it to perform its function more effectively.
The Draft Model Rules, 2016 that repeal the Model Rules, 2007, are based on the philosophy that children need to be reformed and reintegrated into society. The Rules are appreciative of the development needs of children and therefore best interest of the child along with child friendly procedures is incorporated across the provisions and is the primary consideration.
One of the key features of the JJ Act, 2015 is special treatment of children in the age group of 16-18 years who commit heinous offences. The Draft rules prescribe detailed child friendly procedures for police, Juvenile Justice Board (JJB) and Children’s Court. The Board and the Children’s Court are to adhere to the principle of best interest of the child and the objective of rehabilitation and reintegration of the child in the society. Every state Government is required to set up at least one “place of safety” in a State for the rehabilitation of such children. The Rules prescribe for extensive services to be provided to such children through regular monitoring.
A principle of JJ Act, 2015 is that keeping children in institutional care should be a measure of last resort. The Act therefore provides for various de-institutionalization measures for children such as adoption, foster care and sponsorship. The Draft rules prescribe detailed procedures to give effect to these provisions. Various models of Group foster care were reviewed and studied before drafting the relevant provisions in the Rules. In addition to these, roles and responsibilities of various functionaries responsible to provide care and protection to children have been re-defined to bring clarity.
To facilitate quick and smooth adoption of children, the entire adoption process has been made online and transparent. Simplified procedures have been laid down for adoption by relatives. Child care institutions are required to develop linkages with Specialized Adoption Agencies so that the pool of adoptable children can be increased and these children can be brought into the adoption process. Central Adoption Resource Authority (CARA), which was earlier a society has been given the status of a statutory body to enable it to function better. The Draft Rules prescribe for a comprehensive list of function of CARA, to facilitate its smooth functioning.
The JJ Act, 2015 includes a separate chapter on offences against child and several of the offences listed in this chapter were so far not adequately covered under any other law. These include sale and procurement of children for any purpose including illegal adoption, corporal punishment in child care institutions, giving children intoxicating liquor or narcotic drug or psychotropic substance or tobacco products, use of child by militant or adult groups, offences against disabled children and, kidnapping and abduction of children. For the effective implementation of these provisions, the Draft Rules provides for child friendly procedures for reporting, recording and trial. It is proposed that every police station will have child friendly infrastructure, similarly special Children’s Room will be designated in every Court complex.
In addition to the Draft Rules, extensive Forms have also been drafted to standardize and simplify prescribed procedures. A total of 49 Forms have been drafted which is more than double the Forms in Model Rules, 2007. Separate individual care forms for children in need of care and protection and those in conflict with law have been created, form for social background report by the police, which was lacking earlier has been developed to assist the police in recording information about children. Form for period review of children in the age group of 16-18 years who are placed in “place of safety”, will assist in proper review of the progress of the child and also ensure children are provided with adequate services for their rehabilitation. Several other forms related to periodic report by probation officer, case monitoring sheet, Comprehensive psycho-social report, Rehabilitation card, etc. will go a long way in better understanding and implementation of the Act and Rules framed thereunder.
The Ministry constituted a multi-disciplinary Committee to draft the model rules. The committee comprised of a Senior Judge and advocates, members of Juvenile Justice Board and Child Welfare Committee, representatives of State Governments, representatives of the Ministry of Women and Child Development, mental health expert, and civil society organizations, all working in the field of child protection. After a comprehensive review of the Draft Rules by the Ministry, these are being released today. Thereafter, Adoption Regulations and Model Foster Care Guidelines under the JJ Act, 2015 will also be placed in public domain shortly.
The Draft Rules are also being placed on the website of the Ministrywww.wcd.nic.in for inviting suggestions /comments from the Civil Society Organisations, Non-Government Organizations, Individuals, State Governments/UT administrations and Ministries concerned. Comments are to be sent to the Ministry at email id firstname.lastname@example.org within 15 days starting from today.
20.President Mukherjee Outlines Eight Steps for a People Centric Partnership Between India and China
The President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee delivered a lecture at Peking University today (May 26, 2016) on the topic “India-China Relations: 8 steps to a people-centric partnership”.
21.Address by the President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee at the Peking University, China on the Topic “India –China Relations: 8 Steps to a Partnership of the People”
India and China are the inheritors of a great legacy – borne of our intensive intellectual and cultural contacts since the first millennium. We cannot imagine our common history without the central contribution of Kumarajiva or Bodhidharma or the records and experiences of XuanZangand Fa Xian from China.
There are, of course, periods of which we do not have much information – perhaps these were stretches of time when there was less direct contact.
In the early years of the last century, when India and China were engaged in a common struggle to break free of foreign domination and regain their rightful place in the world order, we had drawn strength and inspiration from each other.
Indians fondly remember the solidarity and support extended by China’s leaders to our freedom movement.
Similarly, the Chinese people recall, with appreciation, the 1925 Resolution of the Indian National Congress in support of China after British-Indian troops had been dispatched to suppress an anti-imperialist struggle in China.
The Medical Mission led by Dr. Kotnis in 1938 was yet another example of the genuine bonds of friendship and humanity between our people.
Mindful of the glorious past of our two civilizations, independent India was determined to seek friendship with China. Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru, as the President of the Indian National Congress, addressing the Sino-Indian Cultural Society on 28 December 1945 in Shantiniketan, articulated our vision of the India-China friendship. In his words, “A strong and united China and a strong and united India must come close to each other. Their amity and friendship will not only lead to mutual benefit but will also benefit the world at large.”
In the last seven decades, our bilateral relations have been tested by difficulties and challenges; but the determination of the Indian people to safeguard their friendship with the people of China has visibly endured.
Today, as India and China pursue their respective developmental goals we both seek to live in friendship and realise our common dream of an Asian Century. Both our nations have reaped rich political and economic dividends from this wise and judicious approach.
Today, at a time of global economic uncertainty, our two countries, despite the pressure of having 40 per cent of the world’s human population, have managed to maintain unity and growth.
Our joint contribution to the world economy as well as regional and global stability, cannot be underestimated: India and China are poised to join the ranks of leading global powers.
It is incumbent on us, as emerging economic powers to remain equally focused on nurturing regional and global prosperity. We both are at the threshold of an opportunity to join hands and create a resurgence, a positive energy, an “Asian Century”. This will not be an easy task. We will need to overcome obstacles with resolve and fortitude. We must persevere to realise this dream. We can do this together. We can do it if we join hands in a durable friendship. I would like to share my vision on how we could do this.
I would stress that political understanding between our two nations is vital for a Closer Developmental Partnership. One of the ways it could be done is through enhanced political communication. We have broadened the “common ground” and learned to manage our differences. There are challenges -including the Boundary Question that still need to be addressed comprehensively. While it is natural for neighbours to have a difference of views on certain issues from time to time, I consider it a test of our political acumen when we are called upon to draw upon our civilisational wisdom and resolve these differences to the mutual satisfaction of both sides. Both sides should work with the aim of ensuring that we do not burden our coming generations by leaving our unresolved problems and differences to them.
It is for these reasons that I am glad that we are steadily diversifying our partnership in every area of common interest. China is our largest trading partner. Our developmental experiences are arguably most relevant for each other. Our respective achievements in infrastructure, mobility, energy, skills development, healthcare, education and urbanization offer a fertile ground for exchange and cooperation. Our defence & security exchanges now include annual military exercises. There is greater Chinese investment in India and vice versa. Government-to-Government mechanisms include high-level dialogues between the National Reform and Development Commission of China and the NITI Aayog of India.
I therefore propose that our two sides should focus on fostering a people-centric partnership to create a broad level of contact between our two countries.
To build a people-centric partnership we must have mutual trust predicated on mutual respect and a better appreciation of our respective political and social systems. This can be achieved by closer contacts at all levels. As you are aware, India chose to be a secular parliamentary democracy. Our system of participative governance is founded on the principles of tolerance, inclusiveness and consensus. Attempts to derail our peace through acts of terrorism have not shaken our faith. Our society is resilient and public interest is protected by a free media, an independent judiciary and a vibrant civil society.
Second, both India and China are ‘young’ societies. Our youth share common aspirations and perceptions. Their annual exchanges have been fruitful but both sides need to synergize their potential by including more educational opportunities, youth festivals, sports exchanges, youth-oriented tourism and social media linkages etc.
Third, as citizens of a digital age, we recognise the power of visual images. This makes joint film production a useful instrument for creating positive perceptions .We should endeavor to expand the reach of our initiatives though regular screening and televising of our films and programmes in both countries.
Fourth, we need to re-invigorate our intellectual and cultural exchanges. Yoga in India and Tai Chi in China as well as traditional medicine are part of our cultural heritage. Our annual India-China Think-Tank Forum and High-level Media Forum are good initiatives. Greater exchanges between institutions of higher learning, more cultural festivals and joint research and scholarship programmes can help dispel the notion that we need to look to the West and not to each other to make progress in education, science & technology.
Fifth, travel can be a very important binding factor. It is obvious that in the coming decade, Indians and Chinese will represent the largest volume of tourist travel globally. The immense potential of India as a tourism destination must be better projected. I commend both Governments for holding the Visit India Year in China last year and the Visit China Year in India this year. We welcome your Government’s decision to open a second route for the Kailash-Mansarovar pilgrimage. Indians would like to have more opportunities to travel to their holy sites in China and, in turn, welcome more Chinese visits to Buddhist pilgrimage centres in India.
Sixth, civil society is playing an increasingly significant role in both our societies, addressing a range of common concerns including the challenges of urbanization, environmental degradation, the urgent need for skills development and the digital divide. By pursuing sustainable solutions and sharing experiences, civil societies on both sides can collaborate – duly respecting the parameters in which they are required to operate in our respective countries.
Seventh, we have a common approach to global and developmental issues that facilitate our strong cooperation in multilateral fora including the G-20, BRICS, EAS, AIIB, SCO and the United Nations. We can use such platforms to enhance public awareness of the desire of both our countries for a shared future shaped by us together. As our respective peoples and the world see our Governments working together at the global and regional level, they, too, will support and contribute to the achievement of our shared goals.
Finally, trade and commerce can be the most powerful agents in reinforcing our complementarities. We are pleased that in the past decade there has been substantial growth in our bilateral trade and investment ties, but there is a vast untapped potential waiting to be fully realised. We invite Chinese companies to participate in the ‘Make in India’ initiative and to join us in Start Up India. Let us jointly innovate to create a new model for business.
Ladies and gentlemen, I am confident that by placing these eight pillars at the foundation of a “people centric” approach we can successfully enhance and strengthen our co-operation to the mutual benefit of both our peoples.
In 1942, Gandhiji had said “I look forward to the day when a free India and a free China will cooperate together in friendship and brotherhood for their own good and for the good of Asia and the world.” I call on the peoples of India and China to tirelessly strive for that objective – despite the current challenges. I am confident that we can work together to achieve this golden vision.
22.IAF Participation in Ex Desert Eagle – II at UAE
A bilateral Air Force exercise between India and United Arab Emirates (UAE) is underway at Al-Dhafra Air Base in UAE from 24 May 16 to 03 Jun 16. Ex-Desert Eagle-I with UAE Air Force was held at the same location in Sep 08. Su-30 MkI of the Indian Air Force and Mirage 2000-9, F-16 of UAE Air Force are participating in the exercise.
23.“Mission 11 Million” to engage more than 11 million children in activities relating to Football to be launched in October, 2016
The Union Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports has urged the states and Union Territories to take necessary steps to popularize and promote the sport of Football in their territory in order to make the FIFA U-17 World Cup a huge success, by including Football in various programmes of the State Governments.
In a letter sent to all Chief Secretaries of states and Union Territories, the Secretary, Department of Sports Shri Rajiv Yadav has said that FIFA U-17 World Cup is going to be held in India in October, 2017 and it is the first time that this prestigious tournament will be held in India.