Press Information Bureau(PIB) IAS UPSC – 15th November to 22nd November – 2020
Virtual court and e-challan project launched in Assam
- Maharashtra’s 2nd virtual court called “NyayKaushal” was recently inaugurated
- With this 9 virtual courts become functional across the country
- Over 30 lakh cases have been handled by 7 virtual courts
- In over10 lakh cases, online fine of more than Rs.123 Cr has been realized till 9th November
About Virtual Court and E-challan Solution
E-challan solution is an initiative of the Union Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) whereas the software has been developed by National Informatics Centre (NIC). It will replace the present concept of manual challan with an electronically generated digital challan.
Virtual court is an initiative of E-Committee of Supreme Court along with Department of Justice, Ministry of Law& Justice, and Government of India.
- Virtual Court is an online court being managed by Virtual Judge (which is not a person but an algorithm) whose jurisdiction can be extended to entire state and working hours may be 24X7.
- There is no brick& mortar building of the court. In a trial by Virtual Court, neither litigant shall come to the court nor will Judge have to sit physically in the court to adjudicate the case.
- The communication may only be in electronic form and the sentencing and further payment of fine or compensation will also be online. Only single process is allowed and there can be no argument.
- It may be proactive admission of guilt by the accused or proactive compliance of the cause by defendant on receipt of the summons in electronic form. On payment of Fine, such matters may be treated as disposed off.
- Citizen neither have to wait in lines in courts nor have to confront Traffic Police man. It will increase productivity of citizen as well as judicial officers. It will promote greater accountability and less corruption in Traffic Police Department thus bettering life of people.
Sustainable Alternative Towards Affordable Transportation (SATAT) initiative
(Topic: Government schemes and policies)
- SATAT is an initiative aimed at providing a Sustainable Alternative Towards Affordable Transportation (SATAT) as a developmental effort that would benefit both vehicle-users as well as farmers and entrepreneurs.
- It is a joint initiative of IndianOil, BPCL and HPCL to turn waste into green energy.
- Petroleum Ministry with PSU Oil Marketing Companies inviting Expression of Interest (EoI) from potential entrepreneurs to set up Compressed Bio-Gas (CBG) production plants and make available CBG in the market for use in automotive fuels.
- Government of India, under the SATAT initiatives envisages setting up of 5000 CBG plants by 2023-24 with production target of 15 MMT, facilitating the creation of new employment opportunities and enhancing farmers’ income towards further invigorating the rural economy.
- Benefits out of the SATAT will go to our farmers, rural areas and tribals. With inclusion of forest waste, Agri-waste, animal husbandry waste and marine waste, SATAT involves a multi-pronged approach. With liberalized policy regime ensuring ease of doing business for entrepreneurs, off-take guarantee, financing and technology support, SATAT is all set to contribute towards doubling farmer’s income, generating employment for the youth and ensuring clean energy for sustainable development.
- Over the last two years, SATAT has grown into one of flagship programs of MoPNG. SATAT will establish an ecosystem for the production of Compressed Bio Gas from various waste and biomass sources in the country leading to multiple benefits viz. reduction of natural gas import, reduction of GHG emission, reduction in burning of agriculture residues, remunerative income to farmers, employment generation, effective waste management etc. The initiative is in line with the goals of AatmaNirbhar Bharat, Swachh Bharat Mission and boosting MSME sector.
Rs. 2 lakh crore to be invested for setting up 5000 Compressed bio-gas in the country: To boost availability of affordable and clean transport fuels, a MoU was signed today between MoPNG and leading oil & gas marketing companies & technology providers to establish Compressed Bio-Gas CBG) plants across India
Benefits of Compressed Bio-Gas (CBG)
There are multiple benefits from converting agricultural residue, cattle dung and municipal solid waste into CBG on a commercial scale:
- Responsible waste management, reduction in carbon emissions and pollution
- Additional revenue source for farmers
- Boost to entrepreneurship, rural economy and employment
- Support to national commitments in achieving climate change goals
- Reduction in import of natural gas and crude oil
- Buffer against crude oil/gas price fluctuations
Do you know?
- The Government of India had launched the GOBAR-DHAN (Galvanising Organic Bio-Agro Resources) scheme earlier this year to convert cattle dung and solid waste in farms to CBG and compost.
$120 million loan signing between Government of India and the World Bank
(Topic: Role of international organizations)
For: The implementation of Meghalaya Integrated Transport Project (MITP)
- To improve and modernise the transport sector of state of Meghalaya
- Will help Meghalaya to harness its vast growth potential for high-value agriculture and tourism
- Will improve about 300 km of strategic road segments and stand-alone bridges by using innovative, climate resilient, and nature-based solutions
- Will also support innovative solutions such as precast bridges to reduce both time and cost of construction.
- Help Meghalaya develop reliable, climate resilient and safe roads which is crucial for the economic development of the state and its people as economic growth of any region is closely linked to its road infrastructure.
Within the state, it will provide the much-needed transport connectivity. It will also position Meghalaya as a major connecting hub for international trade through the Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, and the Nepal Corridor.
This operation will also support state government’s “Restart Meghalaya Mission” to revive and boost development activities affected due to COVID-19 pandemic. It will help restore transport services and generate direct employment of about 8 million person days.
Government of India & NDB Sign Agreement for USD 500 Million
(Topic: Role of international organizations)
The Government of India, the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, National Capital Region Transport Corporation Limited and the New Development Bank(NDB) today signed a loan agreement for lendingUSD 500 million for the ‘Delhi-Ghaziabad-Meerut Regional Rapid Transit System Project’to provide fast, reliable, safe and comfortable public transport system in the National Capital Region (NCR).
The NCR is among the world’s largest urban agglomerations and a major economic centre of India. Due to lack of efficient public transport options, the number of private vehicles in NCR has increased. The daily passenger traffic along the Delhi-Ghaziabad-Meerut corridor in NCR is estimated at 0.69 million, of which 63% utilize private vehicles for commuting. Due to traffic congestion, it can take about 3 to 4 hours to travel between Delhi and Meerut in Uttar Pradesh by road during peak hours. Rapid growth in vehicular traffic has made NCR one of the most polluted regions in the world. By 2030, NCR is projected to become the most populous urban agglomeration in the world, which will increase pressure on basic infrastructure such as housing, water supply, electricity and transport.
Fast transit system will
- Support in achieving the goal of sustainable urban development in NCR region including National Capital Territory of Delhi
- Activate processes which will enable sustainable economic and social development with environmental protection, for future generations.
- The environment friendly and very low emission RRTS will carry many times more people at high speed (average speed 100 kmph) while occupying just 3 m space on land thus reducing congestion on the roads.
- Overall it will significantly reduce the total emissions from the transport sector in NCR.
15th G20 Leaders’ Summit
(Topic: International organizations)
Convened by: Saudi Arabia
Theme: Realizing Opportunities of 21st Century for All
Focus: On an inclusive, resilient, and sustainable recovery from the COVID-19.
- During the G 20 Summit, the leaders will discuss pandemic preparedness and the ways and means to restore jobs.
- The leaders will also share their vision for building an inclusive, sustainable, and resilient future.
India will enter the G20 Troika, along with Saudi Arabia when Italy will take over the Presidency of the G-20 on 1st December, 2020.
India’s Stand –
Called for a new Global Index for the Post-Corona World that comprises four key elements –
- Creation of a vast Talent Pool
- Ensuring that Technology reaches all segments of the society
- Transparency in systems of governance
- Dealing with Mother Earth with a spirit of Trusteeship
For inclusive, resilient and sustainable recovery in a Post COVID world, effective global governance is required and reformed multilateralism through improvement in character, governance and processes of multilateral institutions is the need of the hour.
- India is following the same principle in the ‘Reform-Perform-Transform’ strategy to move forward and inclusive development efforts that are participative.
- With the changing situation in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, India has adopted a ‘Self Reliant India’ initiative. Following this vision, based on its competence and dependability, India will become an important and reliable pillar of World Economy and Global Supply Chains. At a global level, India also took the initiative of establishing institutions such as the International Solar Alliance and the Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure.
- There is a need to fight Climate Change in an integrated, comprehensive and holistic manner. India is not only meeting Paris Agreement targets, but will be exceeding them. India has been inspired by its traditional ethos of living in harmony with the environment and has adopted a low carbon and climate resilient development approach.
- For humanity to prosper, every single individual must prosper and that we should not merely see labour as a factor of production. Instead, we should focus on human dignity of every worker. Such as approach would be the best guarantee for safeguarding our planet.
- Dealing with environment and nature as trustees rather than owners will inspire us towards a Holistic and Healthy Life Style, a principle whose benchmark could be a Per Capita Carbon Footprint.
- Noting that ‘Work from Anywhere’ is a new normal in the post-COVID world, India suggested creation of a G20 Virtual Secretariat as a follow up and documentation repository.
G20 Riyadh Declaration
Called for coordinated global action, solidarity, and multilateral cooperation to overcome the current challenges and realize opportunities of the 21st century for all by empowering people, safeguarding the planet, and shaping new frontiers.
On COVID-19, the EU championed a multilateral solution to the coronavirus pandemic. EU leaders called on the G20 to uphold and deepen its commitment to fight the COVID-19 crisis, notably by ensuring the affordable and equitable access for all people of diagnostics, therapeutics and vaccines. The Access to COVID-19 Tools Accelerator (ACT-A) initiative and its COVAX facility are the main tools to do so.
On climate change, the Summit agreed on a unified paragraph in the G20 Riyadh Declaration, after three consecutive G20 Summits where such consensus could not be reached. EU leaders urged all G20 members to work towards the full and effective implementation of the Paris Agreement. The EU also promoted a recovery based on green, inclusive, sustainable, resilient and digital growth in line with the 2030 Agenda and its Sustainable Development Goals.
On debt relief for the most fragile countries, Leaders reconfirmed their support through the G20 Debt Service Suspension Initiative that will provide debt relief and free resources to fight the pandemic. They committed to implementing the Debt Service Suspension Initiative (DSSI) including its extension through June 2021. EU leaders stressed that additional steps might be needed, and the Summit endorsed a common multilateral framework for further debt treatments.
On trade and taxation of the digital economy, Leaders recalled their support to the WTO reform process in the lead up to the 12th WTO Ministerial Conference and recognized the contribution that the Riyadh Initiative on the Future of the WTO has made. They also agreed to strive to find a consensus-based solution for a globally fair, sustainable, and modern international tax system by mid-2021, built on the ongoing work of the OECD.
Upcoming G-20 Presidencies: Will be held by
- Next: Italy
- Indonesia in 2022
- India in 2023
- Brazil in 2024
12th BRICS Virtual Summit
(Topic: International organizations)
Hosted by: Russia
Theme: Global Stability, Shared Security and Innovative Growth
- During the 12th summit, held in the backdrop of the 75th anniversary of the UN and in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic, leaders will be discussing intra-BRICS cooperation and key issues in the global context, including the reform of the multilateral system
- Discuss measures to mitigate the impact of the ongoing pandemic, cooperation in counter terrorism, trade, health, energy and people to people exchanges.
The purpose of the Russian BRICS chairmanship in 2020, as it is for multifaceted cooperation between the BRICS countries, is to contribute to raising living standards and quality of life of our people
BRICS counter-terrorism strategy
The member countries calls upon all nations to take appropriate measures to prevent the use of their territories for terrorist bases or the perpetration or organization of terrorist acts intended to be committed against other States or their citizens.
It also stressed on the need for all States to refrain from organizing, instigating, facilitating, participating in, financing, encouraging or tolerating terrorist activities and to take appropriate practical measures to ensure that their territories are not used for terrorist bases or preparation or organization of terrorist acts intended to be committed against other States or their citizens.
The BRICS declaration countries also underlined the cross-border movement of terrorists. BRICS countries recognize that acts, methods and practices of terrorism in all its forms and manifestations are activities aimed at the destruction of human rights, fundamental freedoms and democracy, threatening territorial integrity, security of States, and that the international community should take the necessary steps to enhance cooperation to prevent and combat terrorism, including cross-border movement of terrorists.
- While Russia was the key drafting country as the host and chair of BRICS this year, China also signed off on the declaration which talked about “respect for territorial integrity” of Syria, Libya, Iraq and in the context of the UN.
- However, there was no mention of the over six-month border stand-off between India and China.
PM Modi at BRICS
- ‘Self-reliant India’ Campaign: The campaign is based on the belief that a self-reliant and resilient India post-Covid can be a force multiplier for the global economy and make a strong contribution to the global value chains. India was able to send essential medicines to more than 150 countries due to the capability of the Indian pharma industry. Our vaccine production and delivery capacity will also work in the interest of humanity like this.
- On BRICS economies: BRICS economies will play a crucial role in the global recovery after the pandemic. We have more than 42 per cent of the world’s population, and our countries are among the main engines of the global economy. There is a lot of scope for increasing mutual trade between BRICS countries. Our mutual institutions and systems—such as BRICS Inter-Bank Cooperation Mechanism, New Development Bank, Contingent Reserve Arrangement and Customs Cooperation—can also make our contribution effective in the global recovery.
- Terrorism: It is the “biggest problem” facing the world and asserted that there was a need to tackle the menace in an organised manner. We have to ensure that the countries that support and assist the terrorists are also held guilty.
- Reform of UNSC: Underlined the need to reform of the United Nations Security Council as well as multilateral bodies like the World Trade Organisation and the International Monetary Fund.
China at BRICS
Offered to cooperate with India and other BRICS nations in the development of vaccines against the coronavirus:
- Chinese companies are working with their Russian and Brazilian partners on phase three clinical trials for vaccines.
- To support the development of BRICS Vaccine R&D centre, China has designated its own national centre. China proposed a BRICS symposium on traditional medicine to explore its role in coronavirus prevention and treatment
- China will open the BRICS partnership on a new industrial revolution innovation centre in the Chinese city of Xiamen.
About BRICS (Brazil-Russia-India-China-South Africa)
On November 30, 2001, Jim O’Neill, a British economist who was then chairman of Goldman Sachs Asset Management, coined the term ‘BRIC’ to describe the four emerging economies of Brazil, Russia, India, and China.
- Established in 2009, BRICS represents the collective voice of the Global South with Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa as its members.
- After its establishment more than a decade ago, BRICS became the first-ever compact non-Western, inter-continental multilateral club.
- It was lauded as a unique experiment to bring together politically, economically and culturally diverse countries who share a range of concerns and interests with regard to the functioning of the western liberal international order.
- BRICS has been driven by the idea to challenge, if not dismantle, western hegemony and bring new ideas on the table for global governance.
- The BRICS is mainly portrayed as a grouping of fast-emerging economies with huge market potential.
- Bilateral relations among BRICS nations are conducted on the basis of non-interference, equality, and mutual benefit.
- There are two components that make up the financial architecture of BRICS:
- New Development Bank (NDB) (BRICS Development Bank)
- Contingent Reserve Arrangement (CRA).
A. BRICS 5G Innovation Base
- BRICS 5G innovation base has been proposed by China.
- Objective: To take forward 5G and Artificial Intelligence (AI) cooperation BRICS countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa).
- Due to ongoing tensions between India and China, India is reluctant to join the programme while other countries are willing to allow China’s participation in their 5G networks.
- India has made clear that a return to normalcy cannot be possible while tensions along the Line of Actual Control remain unresolved.
- India has also recently joined the ‘Global Partnership on Artificial Intelligence (GPAI)’ as a founding member.
- Russia has agreed to work with China on 5G.
- In South Africa, Huawei is providing services to provide 5G networks.
- Brazil has allowed participation of Huawei in 5G trials.
B. Counter-Terrorism Strategy by BRICS
The five-nation grouping BRICS has adopted a new counter-terrorism strategy to effectively deal with terrorism.
- To complement and strengthen the existing bilateral and multilateral ties among the BRICS countries;
- To make a meaningful contribution to the global efforts of preventing and combating the threat of terrorism.
The BRICS countries reaffirmed that terrorism in all its forms and manifestations constitutes one of the most serious threats to international peace and security and that any act of terrorism committed is a crime and has no justification. They also recognized that the international community should take the necessary steps to enhance cooperation to prevent and combat terrorism, including cross-border movement of terrorists.
World Fisheries Day
(Topic: Agriculture, Food processing)
On: 21st November, 2020
Aim: To draw attention to overfishing, habitat destruction and other serious threats to the sustainability of marine and inland resources.
The Fisheries sector is responsible for providing nutritional security, livelihood support and employment to millions of Indians.
- India is the second major producer of fish through aquaculture in the world.
- It is the 4th largest exporter of fish in the world.
- It contributes 7.7% to the global fish production.
- Fish constituted about 10% of total exports from India and almost 20% of agriculture exports in 2017-18.
- The fisheries and aquaculture production contribute around 1% to India’s GDP and over 5% to the agricultural GDP.
- Around 28 million people are employed in the fisheries sector in India.
The importance –
It is estimated that the world’s population will exceed 9 billion by 2050. With the increase in the population, the demand for nutritional security also goes on parallel lines. The agriculture and the allied sectors have to contribute the food demand and supply will play an important role combined with other food sectors to meet the nutritional demands of the growing population.
The marine capture fisheries of our country has become stagnant and there is a paradigm shift from capture to culture based fisheries. Aquaculture activities have to be taken up in India as the alternative way of meeting the growing demand of nutritional security.
Indian Government’s Effort to Improve Fisheries Sector
- Fisheries and Aquaculture Infrastructure Development Fund (FIDF) during 2018-19: It will cater to creation of fisheries infrastructure facilities both in marine and inland fisheries sectors to enhance the fish production in the country.
- Extension of Kisan Credit Cards (KCC) facilities to fishers and fish farmers to help them in meeting their working capital needs.
- Pradhan Mantri Matsya Sampada Yojana: It aims to achieve 22 million tonnes of fish production by 2024-25. It is also expected to create employment opportunities for 5.5 million people. At a total estimated investment of Rs. 20,050 crores, intends to address critical gaps in fish production and productivity, quality, technology, post-harvest infrastructure and management, modernisation and strengthening of value chain, traceability, establishing a robust fisheries management framework and fishers’ welfare.
- Blue Revolution: It focuses on creating an enabling environment for integrated development and management of fisheries for the socio-economic development of the fishers and fish farmers.
The Way Forward
- There is a need to streamline policies and programs to take R&D benefits to the farmers and fishers for orderly and sustainable utilisation of all potential resources with focus on increasing efficiency and reducing environmental footprint.
- We need to diligently explore the resources available in the country such as waterlogged area, wetlands, lakes, reservoirs, canals, ponds, tanks, floodplains, backwaters, lagoons, low saline inland areas for increasing the fish production.
- Lay special thrust on increasing productivity in inland fisheries along with full utilisation of the country’s deep sea fishing potential.
- It is true that China has the innate advantage of more than twice the coastal line of India and has larger areas of inland water resources and reservoirs. But, that should not deter India because it has one of the largest Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) areas of over 2 million sq km compared to China’s 0.88 million sq km.
- The development of EEZ calls for new systems and large-scale deployment of offshore aquaculture activities of high value species.
- Ocean ranching is one area which will yield rich social dividends, without damaging the ecosystem.
- India also needs a single uniform national data on marine fisheries because authentic data truly reflect ground realities which in turn help in efficient planning for the future.’
- Role of logistics
- Food processing and marketing cannot become complete in the absence of logistics. A robust logistics support requires complementary infrastructural facilities like cold chain and storage facilities to handle peak harvests.
- Creation of cold chains can help reduce spoilage losses which are currently at 30-35 per cent.
- Marketing infrastructure and cloud-based market intelligence should also be put in place.
- India should also take the lead in empowering the discernible fish fans across the world by allowing them to trace the back history of the fish it cultivates as to how they were grown, what they were fed with and the methods by which they were caught and processed. It means a quality certification authenticating globally accepted good management practices involving the twin elements of sustainability and traceability both for the marine and inland sectors.
- Sustainability being the pivot of 2030 Master Plan, there should also be efforts to integrate aquaculture and agriculture to boost farmers’ income.
- For the first time, the Indian Government will award best performing States in the Fisheries Sector.
- Best States: (1) Odisha (amongst Marine states); (2) Uttar Pradesh (amongst Inland states); (3) Assam (amongst Hilly and NE states).
Answer: Developing entrepreneurship in the field of livestock and fisheries can be a game changer for the rural economy. Elucidate.
India’s IRNSS is now part of World Wide Radio Navigation System
(Topic: Space; Science and Technology)
The Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS) has been accepted as a component of the World Wide Radio Navigation System (WWRNS) for operation in the Indian Ocean Region by the International Maritime Organization (IMO).
- This will enable merchant vessels to use IRNSS for obtaining position information similar to GPS and GLONASS to assist in the navigation of ships in ocean waters within the area covered by 50°N latitude, 55°E longitude, 5°S latitude and 110°E longitude (approximately up to 1500 km from Indian boundary).
- IRNSS is an independent regional navigation satellite system developed by India. It is designed to provide accurate position information service to assist in the navigation of ships in Indian Ocean waters.
Scientists establish empirical relationships for identifying M Dwarf stars that can be potentially habitable
(Topic: Space; Science and Technology)
The clouds are becoming clearer in the search for a new kind of life in the universe. Scientists have established some empirical relationships enabling the use of spectral indices for finding the fundamental parameters of M dwarf stars that could identify them as potentially habitable.
M dwarfs are the tiniest of the stars that have masses ranging from about 8 percent to about 50 percent of the Sun’s mass. More than 70% of all stars in our Galaxy are M dwarfs (also known as red dwarfs), dominating the stellar populations by number. For long, scientists have considered them unlikely host of habitable planets.
As new evidence that the chances of the occurrence of planetary systems, especially Earth-like planets orbiting in ‘habitable zones’, increases with decreasing stellar mass and radius, M dwarfs are becoming attractive targets for potentially habitable extra-planet searches due to their proximity, small size, and low mass. NASA’s Kepler mission suggests that M dwarfs are swarming with rocky planets, making the characterization of these low-mass stars crucial.
- A total of 53 M dwarfs were studied using the TIFR Near-Infrared (NIR) Spectrometer and Imager (TIRSPEC) instrument on the 2-m Himalayan Chandra Telescope (HCT) at Hanle, India.
- A new medium resolution spectra of M-type dwarf stars (M0V–M7V) covering the NIR wavelength was derived.
- Using effective temperature (Teff), radius, and luminosity of nearby bright calibrator stars, the team has created new empirical relationships among those fundamental parameters and spectral indices of M dwarfs.
- The determination of stellar parameters in M dwarfs have been a challenging task as these M dwarfs are smaller, cooler, and fainter than Sun-like stars. These new empirical relationships could help overcome this challenge.
Prelims oriented News
CM of Bihar: Nitish Kumar
National Newborn Week 2020: 15th through 21st November
- Aim: To reinforce the importance of newborn health as a key priority area of the health sector and to reiterate the commitment at the highest level.
- Theme: ‘Quality, Equity, Dignity for every newborn at every health facility and everywhere’.
World Toilet Day: 19th November
- Conferred the Swachhata Awards 2020 on the 20 best performing districts for making significant contribution towards ODF Sustainability and ODF Plus goals
- The 20 awardee districts are namely West Godavari and East Godavari (Andhra Pradesh), Siang (Arunachal Pradesh), Kanker and Bemetara (Chhattisgarh);Vadodara and Rajkot (Gujarat); Bhiwana and Rewari (Haryana); Ernakulam and Wayanad (Kerala);Kolhapur and Nashik (Maharashtra); Kolasib and Serchhip (Mioram); Moga and Fatehgarh Sahib (Punjab); Siddipet and Peddapalli (Telangana); and Cooch Behar (West Bengal).
Naturopathy Day: 18th November
- The day on which Mahatma Gandhi become a Life Member of the Nature Cure Foundation Trust and signed the deed; Gandhiji is considered the founding figure of Naturopathy in India, as it was largely through his efforts that this practice which originated in Europe became popular in India.
- The future will be the era of Physiology, not Pathology. Health through Medicine is obscure and Health in the coming years will be more reliant on Naturopathy. Without a core change in the mindset of people, the planet will be sicker and sicker day by day. Therefore, the innovation of a new model of Naturopathy treatment is the demand of the day, along with its integration with other modern science.
- Must Read: Link 1
- The virtual 3rd Global Renewable Energy Investment Meeting and Expo (RE-INVEST 2020)
- Provide an international forum for investment promotion in renewable energy.
- It will also send signals to the global renewable community about India’s commitment to the development and scaling up of renewable energy to meet its energy requirements in a sustainable manner.
Will drive eastern India towards self-reliance and contribute to making of an Aatmanirbhar Bharat; the need for focused development of the Eastern India to harness the untapped potential of this region to fuel next wave of national growth is the essence of Mission Purvodaya.
Both petroleum as well as steel sector have to play an important role in Mission Purvodaya.
- Building an Integrated Steel Hub in eastern India which would add to the competitiveness of the steel sector and facilitate regional development with job creation.
- The steel clusters will drive employment opportunities across the value chain, creating both direct and indirect jobs and spurring entrepreneurship, including in under-developed areas.
- It will spur development of other manufacturing industries and will be accompanied with social infrastructure in the form of cities, schools, hospitals, skilling centers etc.
Indian gas grid is being expanded to new markets in eastern and north- eastern part of the country with Government’s supports of capital grants under the Indradhanush North Eastern Gas Grid projects. Pradhan Mantri Urja Ganga (PMUG) project is directed to provide piped cooking gas to the millions of households in eastern states.
India has also recorded a landmark milestone with operationalisation of more than 50,000 Ayushman Bharat Health & Wellness Centres (HWCs)
- Ayushman Bharat was launched in 2018 with its twin pillars of Health & Wellness Centers (HWCs) and Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (PMJAY) with bidirectional linkages between the two for providing the full range of services across the continuum of care.
- The Health & Wellness Centers provide CPHC services to people and sustain the efforts for provision of reproductive, maternal, neonatal, child, adolescent and nutrition (RMNCHA+N) services and control of communicable diseases. They also focus on disease prevention, especially for chronic and non-communicable diseases, wellness through community engagement and creating awareness about health lifestyles, appropriate nutrition and physical activities such as Yoga.
- HWCs also provide a strong backbone for the implementation of the eSanjeevani platform of Health Ministry which includes the eSanjeevani Patient-to-Doctor OPD and eSanjeevani-HWC which provides Doctor-to-Doctor teleconsultation service. 23,103 HWCs have started providing teleconsultation services to citizens. More than 7.5 lakh teleconsultations have already been conducted through these platforms.
Health Ministry’s eSanjeevani completes 8 Lakh consultations
- It is a national telemedicine service that offers tele-consultations enabling patient to doctor consultations from the confines of their home, as well as doctor to doctor consultations.
- This eSanjeevani platform has enabled two types of telemedicine services viz. Doctor-to-Doctor (eSanjeevani) and Patient-to-Doctor (eSanjeevani OPD) Tele-consultations
- The former is being implemented under the Ayushman Bharat Health and Wellness Centre (AB-HWCs) programme.
- The telemedicine platform is hosting over 40 online OPDs, more than half of these are speciality OPDs which include Gynaecology, Psychiatry, Dermatology, ENT, Ophthalmology, antiretroviral therapy (ART) for the AIDS/HIV patients, Non-Communicable Disease (NCD) etc.
SIMBEX-20: The 27th edition of India – Singapore Bilateral Maritime Exercise
- The SIMBEX series of exercises between IN and Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN), being conducted annually since 1994, are aimed at enhancing mutual inter-operability and imbibing best practices from each other.
- The scope and complexity of these exercises has increased steadily over the past two decades to include advanced naval drills covering a wide spectrum of maritime operations.
SITMEX-20: The SITMEX series of exercises are conducted to enhance mutual inter-operability and imbibing best practices between IN, Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN) and Royal Thai Navy (RTN). Besides improving inter-operability between the friendly navies, SITMEX series of exercise also aim to strengthen mutual confidence and develop common understanding and procedures towards enhancing the overall maritime security in the region.
Exercise Malabar 2020: Involved participation by Indian Navy (IN), United States Navy (USN), Japan Maritime Self Defense Force (JMSDF) and Royal Australian Navy (RAN)
Indo-Thai Coordinated Patrol (CORPAT): India-Thailand Coordinated Patrol (Indo-Thai CORPAT) between the Indian Navy and the Royal Thai Navy
- As part of Government of India’s vision of SAGAR (Security AndGrowth for All in the Region), the Indian Navy has been involved in assisting countries in the Indian Ocean Region with EEZ Surveillance, Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief (HADR), and other capacity building and capability-enhancement activities, on their request.
- India and Thailand have especially enjoyed a close and friendly relationship covering a wide spectrum of activities and interactions, which have strengthened over the years.
- To reinforce maritime links, the two navies have been carrying out CORPAT along their International Maritime Boundary Line twice a year since 2005, with the aim of keeping this vital part of the Indian Ocean safe and secure for commercial shipping and international trade.
- CORPAT builds up the understanding and interoperability between navies and facilitates institution of measures to prevent and suppress Illegal Unreported Unregulated (IUU) fishing, drug trafficking, maritime terrorism, armed robbery and piracy.
- It further enhances the operational synergy by exchange of information for prevention of smuggling, illegal immigration and for conduct of SAR operations at sea.
Mission Sagar-II: The Government of India is providing assistance to Friendly Foreign Countries to overcome natural calamities and COVID-19 pandemic, and towards the same INS Airavat is carrying food aid for the people of South Sudan.
- Aligned with Prime Minister’s vision of SAGAR (Security and Growth for All in the Region) and reiterates India’s position as a dependable partner in Indian Ocean Region (IOR) with Indian Navy as the principle maritime agency and first responder in the maritime domain.
- The mission also highlights the importance accorded by India to relations with South Sudan and further strengthens the existing bond. The strong bonds of friendship and brotherly relations between India and countries in Africa have been forged and strengthened over several centuries. India has always stood in solidarity with the countries and people in Africa and has partnered in undertaking development, capacity building and humanitarian assistance programme.
3 Years of UMANG
- The UMANG mobile app (Unified Mobile Application for New-age Governance) is a Government of India all-in-one single, unified, secure, multi-channel, multi-lingual, multi-service mobile app. providing access to high impact services of various organizations of Centre and States.
- UMANG was developed by National e-Governance Division (NeGD), Ministry of Electronics & IT.
- Objective: to enable ‘Ease of Living’ for Citizens by facilitating simple and effortless access to major Government services from a single mobile app.
DIPAM signs an agreement with World Bank for advisory services on Asset Monetization
Department of Investment and Public Asset Management (DIPAM) has signed an agreement with World Bank today (16 Nov 2020). Under the agreement, World Bank is to provide advisory services to DIPAM for asset monetization.
- DIPAM is mandated with facilitating monetization of non-core assets of government CPSEs under strategic disinvestment or closure and enemy property of value of INR 100 crores and above.
- DIPAM has a framework for monetizing non-core assets.
- The World Bank advisory project, approved by the Finance Minister, is aimed at analyzing public asset monetization in India and benchmarking its institutional and business models against international best practices as well as supporting development of operational guidelines and capacity building for their implementation.
- It is expected that this project would facilitate and accelerate the non-core asset monetization process and help unlock the value of these un-used/ marginally used assets which has the potential to substantially augment financial resources for further investments and growth.
Release of Interest Sub-vented Loan from Micro-Irrigation Fund (MIF)
- Micro Irrigation Fund with a corpus of Rs. 5000 crore created with NABARD was operationalised in 2019-20.
- Objective: To facilitate the States in availing an interest subvented loan for expanding coverage of Micro Irrigation by taking up special and innovative projects and also for incentivising micro irrigation beyond the provisions available under PMKSY-Per Drop More Crop to encourage farmers to install micro irrigation systems.
Virtual ceremony for the launch of RuPay card Phase-II in Bhutan
- The implementation of Phase-I of RuPay cards in Bhutan has enabled visitors from India to access ATMs and Point of Sale (PoS) terminals across Bhutan. Phase-II will now allow Bhutanese card holders to access RuPay network in India.
- India and Bhutan share a special partnership, anchored in mutual understanding and respect, reinforced by a shared cultural heritage and strong people to people links.
PM unveils ‘Statue of Peace’ to mark 151st Birth Anniversary celebrations of Jainacharya Shree Vijay Vallabh Surishwer Ji Maharaj
- The Statue unveiled in the honour of the Jain acharya, has been named as ‘Statue of Peace’.
- The 151 inch tall statue has been made from Ashtadhatu i.e. 8 metals, with Copper being the major constituent, and is installed at Vijay Vallabh Sadhana Kendra, Jetpura, in Pali, Rajasthan.
Personality in News
- Queen of the princely state of Jhansi in North India currently present in Jhansi district in Uttar Pradesh, India
- One of the leading figures of the Indian Rebellion of 1857 and became a symbol of resistance to the British Raj for Indian nationalists.
- She was named Manikarnika and was nicknamed Manu.
- After the death of the Maharaja in November 1853, because Damodar Rao (born Anand Rao) was an adopted son, the British East India Company, under Governor-General Lord Dalhousie, applied the Doctrine of Lapse, rejecting Damodar Rao’s claim to the throne and annexing the state to its territories.
- She defended Jhansi against British troops when Sir Hugh Rose besieged Jhansi on 23 March 1858.
- A number of patriotic songs have been written about the Rani. The most famous composition about Rani Lakshmi Bai is the Hindi poem Jhansi ki Rani written by Subhadra Kumari Chauhan.
- An Indian politician, stateswoman and a central figure of the Indian National Congress.
- She was the first and, to date, the only female Prime Minister of India.
- Indira Gandhi was the daughter of Jawaharlal Nehru, the first prime minister of India.
- She served as Prime Minister from January 1966 to March 1977 and again from January 1980 until her assassination in October 1984 (assassins blamed her for the action code-named Operation Blue Star), making her the second longest-serving Indian Prime Minister after her father.
- She went to war with Pakistan in support of the independence movement and war of independence in East Pakistan, which resulted in an Indian victory and the creation of Bangladesh, as well as increasing India’s influence to the point where it became the regional hegemon of South Asia.
- Citing fissiparous tendencies and in response to a call for revolution, Gandhi instituted a state of emergency from 1975 to 1977 where basic civil liberties were suspended and the press was censored. Widespread atrocities were carried out during the emergency. In 1980, she returned to power after free and fair elections.