- Comprehensive water policy to drive away drought, says Naidu
- Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu asserted on Sunday that his government would implement a comprehensive policy to ensure judicious utilisation of water and drive away drought.
- Naidu said his goal was to free the State from the drought pangs by optimal utilisation of the natural resources and available water sources. He would adopt a four-pronged strategy to ensure farmers’ welfare, judicious water use, Vanam Manam and tapping solar energy for development. The government ensured stabilisation of water to 15.75 lakh acres by developing 40,817 ponds and tanks. To avert wastage, 59,176 checkdams were built and ground water availability had been augmented by digging 6.32 lakh ponds in the fields. Despite rainfall deficiency of 30% compared to the previous year, the State recorded 26.5% growth rate, while the national average was only 2.1%, he asserted.
- An outlay of ₹50,000 was spent on irrigation projects and river linkage and linking of tanks were taken up to avert scarcity, the Chief Minister said. He emphasised on water audit in all areas. Water was supplied to 1.30 crore acres out of 2 crore acres of cultivable land. His aim was to supply water to the tailend ayacut and transform the State into Harithandhrapradesh.
- Nearly 143 tmcft water was brought to Kurnool district through various projects, the world’s largest solar plant was established at Sakunala and a seed development centre was started at Nandyal
· Pakistan frees 147 Indian fishermen on humanitarian grounds
- Pakistan released 147 Indian fishermen from Malir Jail in Karachi as a goodwill gesture. As per the list was given to the Indian High Commission by the Pakistani government, 457 Indian prisoners including 399 fishermen and 58 civil prisoners are in Pakistani jails.
- The fishermen were arrested for fishing illegally within the marine border limits of Pakistan and have completed their prison term.
- The Edhi Foundation provided them with clothes and Rs 5,000 each.
- Fishermen from India and Pakistan are frequently detained for illegally fishing in each other’s territorial waters since the Arabian Sea does not have a clearly defined marine border and the wooden boats lack the technology to avoid being drifting away.
- Bengaluru most well read city in India: Survey
- Bengaluru has emerged as the most well read city in India, while Mumbai and Delhi stands at second and third position, respectively, according to a survey conducted by Amazon India’s Annual Reading Trends Reports for 2017.
- Among books, ‘Indian Polity (5th Edition)’ ranked as the top selling book on Amazon India across the country while ‘Sita – Warrior of Mithila’ emerged as the highest selling fiction book of 2017.
- Govt to set up FTII in Arunachal Pradesh
- Arunachal Pradesh would get its first Film and Television Institute, being set up by the union government as part of tapping the potential of the North Eastern region, Union Minister Dr Jitendra Singh said.
- This would be the second such one in the country.
- The first Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) was set up in Pune, an autonomous institute operating under the Information and Broadcasting Ministry.
- It was established in 1960. Anupam Kher is its present Chairman.
· Income Tax Department launches on-line chat service
- Income Tax Departmentlaunched an online chat service on its national website www.incometaxindia.gov.in.
- This is aimed at facilitating the taxpayers resolve their queries.
- A customer support executive having expertise in tax-related matters helps the users in resolving their queries online.
- Giving this information in the Lok Sabha, Minister of State for Finance, Shiv Pratap Shukla said, altogether 8,424 people have benefited from this service.
- The facility is available on all working days from Monday to Friday between 10 AM and 6 PM.
- The module can also be accessed through a mobile application called ‘AayakarSetu’ on Android phone.
- International kite festival begins in Gujarat
- The international kite festival was inaugurated by Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani at Sabarmati Riverfront in Ahmedabad.
- Governor O P Kohli was also present on the occasion.
- Kite enthusiasts from across India and also foreign countries are participating in the week-long festival that is being celebrated across cities in Gujarat.
- The state government-sponsored festival will culminate on January 14, which is celebrated as Uttarayan (Makar Sankranti).
- Nearly 8,500 stations to get Wi-Fi facility at Rs 7-bn cost: Railways
- All railway stations, nearly 8,500 across the country, including those in rural and remote areas – will be equipped with Wi-Fi facilities at an estimated cost of Rs 7 billion.
- As part of the government’s ambitious Digital India initiative, the national transporter has currently commissioned Wi-Fi services at 216 major stations enabling about seven million rail passengers to log on to the free Internet facility.
- According to the the plan finalised at a recent meeting, while 1,200 stations have been identified for this facility to primarily cater to rail passengers, about 7,300 stations have been earmarked to not only serve passengers but also local people in rural and remote areas.
· West Bengal bags first prize for implementation of e-tendering process
- West Bengalreceives one more feather to be added to her crown.
- The acquired the first position for smooth implementation of e-tender process in the state.
- E-tender rule for a contract for projects worthy of more than 5 lakhs was started in 2012 in the state to make the process more transparent.
- The main aim was to make tendre process more transparent and mainly corruption-free as many times people pointed the finger to the process for various irregularities.
- From the first day of 2018, e-tender become mandatory in every department.
- Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee announced the award received from Central Government.
- The state was given the first prize for ensuring e tender.
- The state becomes best in the country for ensuring e-tendering of Fifty-three thousand projects worth RTs 36,000 crore.
· HRD Ministry releases All India Higher Education Survey
- TheGross Enrolment Ratio (GER) in higher education of Indian has registered an increase from 24.5% in 2015-16 to 25.2% in 2016-17 according to latest All India Higher Education Survey (AIHES) released by HRD Ministry.
- The survey findings were based on responses from 795 universities, 34,193 colleges, and 7,496 standalone institutions.
- There is a total of 864 universities,40,026 colleges, and 11,669 standalone institutions in the country.
- Gross Enrolment Ratio (GER): GER is a statistical measure for determining a number of students enrolled in undergraduate, postgraduate and research-level studies within the country and expressed as a percentage of the population. India is aiming to attain GER of 30% by 2020, but it is still far behind countries.
· Union Government to launch e-Sansad and e-Vidhan in Parliament and State
- The Union Ministry of Parliamentary Affairs (MoPA)proposed rolling out of e-Sansad in Parliament and e-Vidhan in State Legislatures to digitize and make their functioning paperless.
- It was announced by Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ananth Kumar after inaugurating 18th All India Whips’ Conference in Udaipur, Rajasthan.
- They are mission mode projects of Union Government under Digital India to make the functioning of Parliament and State Legislatures paperless.
- These projects will make the functioning of Parliament and State Legislatures participative, responsive, transparent, productive and more accountable.
- Khelo India logo launched
- The Union Minister of Youth Affairs and Sports, Col. Rajyavardhan Rathore has launched the simple yet vibrant Khelo India logo at the Nehru Stadium.
- Khelo India School Games will be staged from January 31.
- The three-stroke Khelo India logo was designed by Ogilvy India, and offers flexibility in adapting to numerous pictorial forms.
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