Make in india - Qatar Tribune



Make in india - Qatar Tribune
| tuesday, January 26, 2016
Message from
Indian Ambassador
India-Qatar ties
scale new heights
HE Sanjiv Arora
NDIa is celebrating its 67th
Republic Day on January
26, 2016. It was on this historic day 66 years ago that
the Constitution of a newly
independent India, which was
adopted by the Constituent assembly on November 26, 1949,
came into force. The Constitution enshrines the same ideals
and aspirations that guided India’s peaceful freedom movement in which millions of Indians participated under the most
inspirational leadership of the
Father of the Nation, Mahatma
The people of India resolved
to constitute India into a Sovereign Socialist Secular Democratic Republic and to secure
to all its citizens justice-social,
economic and political, liberty
of thought, expression, belief,
faith and worship, and equality
of status and of opportunity and
to promote among them fraternity, assuring the dignity of the
individual and the unity and integrity of the nation.
My family and colleagues
join me in conveying our warmest greetings and best wishes
to all fellow Indians in Qatar
on India’s 67th Republic Day.
as a special gesture, the Government of India has planned
the visit of a ship of the Indian
Coast Guard, ICGS Sankalp to
Doha from January 24 to 28 to
participate in the celebrations of
our Republic Day in Qatar. We
are grateful for the support and
cooperation of the Government
of Qatar in arranging this visit
on this highly significant and
special occasion.
India, a country of over 1.2
billion people, the world’s largest democracy and the third
largest economy in purchasing power parity terms, is on
the cusp of history. The Government led by Shri Narendra
Modi, Hon’ble Prime Minister
of India has launched major
new initiatives and taken several
measures to re-energise the Indian economy and make India a
preferred destination and partner for business and tourism.
Prime Minister’s visionary
initiatives such as the launch
of ‘Make in India’ campaign on
September 25, 2014, inviting
businessmen from other countries to collaborate with Indian
enterprises and ‘Swachh Bharat’
(Clean India) campaign on the
145th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi on October 2,
2014; ‘Digital India’ and ‘Smart
Cities’ missions; and Startup India initiative to encourage and
incentivise entrepreneurship,
launched on January 16, 2016,
are inspiring Indians and India’s
global diaspora, and enhanc-
ing the attractiveness of India
for businessmen, investors and
tourists from around the world.
On this joyous celebration of
our Republic Day in Qatar, let us
also celebrate the deep-rooted
friendly ties between India and
Qatar, and renew our sincere
thanks to the emir His Highness Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad
al Thani; the Father emir His
Highness Sheikh Hamad bin
khalifa al Thani, the Deputy
emir His Highness Sheikh abdullah bin Hamad al Thani;
Prime Minister and Minister of
Interior He Sheikh abdullah
bin Nasser bin khalifa al Thani,
and the Government and people
of Qatar for nurturing the timetested friendship and multifaceted partnership between
our two great countries, and for
their hospitality to the large, diverse, accomplished and highly
regarded Indian community in
The state visit of HH the
emir’s to India on March 24-25,
2015 at the invitation of Hon’ble
President Shri Pranab Mukherjee, has imparted fresh momentum to our bilateral ties.
The visit was highly significant in many ways. This was HH
the emir’s first visit to India, a
country with which Qatar’s relations are steeped in history.
This was also the first visit of the
Head of State of an arab country after India’s current Government led by Hon’ble Prime
Minister Shri Narendra Modi
assumed office in May 2014.
The most important dimension of any official visit between
two nations is the personal
chemistry between the leaders.
HH the emir and the Indian
leadership struck an instant
and excellent rapport, reflecting
the strong ties, nurtured by cultural affinities, people-to-people
contacts and trade and commerce between the two countries through centuries. at all
the meetings and events, there
was a pervasive atmosphere
of friendship, trust and shared
keenness to work together for
greater progress and prosperity
of the people of both countries.
During the visit of HH the
emir, the two sides discussed
ways and means to build a forward-looking partnership by
further broadening and deepening the bilateral engagement
and by better leveraging the
existing complementary between the two countries in key
areas of mutual interest including inter alia, energy, power,
petrochemicals, investments,
infrastructure, development,
project exports, education, culture, health, human resource,
media and information technology. Six agreements/MoUs
were signed during the visit.
as recently as on November 2, 2015, HH the emir and
Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri
Narendra Modi reviewed bilateral cooperation during their telephonic conversation.
HH the emir renewed his
invitation to Prime Minister
Modi who conveyed his thanks
and reiterated his keenness to
visit Qatar on mutually convenient dates.
Continued on pg2
‘Make in india’
spurs econoMic growth
Initiative seeks to promote nation as preferred global manufacturing hub
Prime Minister Narendra Modi with German Chancellor Angela Merkel (right) visits India’s booth at the world’s largest industrial technology fair, the
Hannover Messe, in Hanover, recently.
ake in India’ initia-
tive was launched
globally in September 2014 as part
of India’s renewed
focus on manufacturing. The
objective of the initiative is to
promote India as the most preferred global manufacturing
Since the launch of this landmark initiative, the Government of
India has taken several measures
to create an enabling environment
for providing an impetus to manufacturing, design, innovation and
India has emerged as the fastest growing economy globally. In-
dia’s rate of growth of 7.5 percent
is accelerating and it remains an
oasis of growth in the midst of
a subdued economic landscape
across the world. Prime Minister
Narendra Modi has given impetus
to growth with innovative initiatives such as ‘Make in India’, ‘Digital India’, ‘100 Smart Cities’ and
‘Skill India’.
The ‘Make in India’ initiative
aims to make India an integral
part of the global supply chain. It
is about making Indian companies
excel in a globalised workspace.
India has vigorously opened up
its economy – defence, railways,
construction, insurance, pension
funds, medical devices -- all have
been rapidly opened up for foreign
direct investment. India today is
one of the most open economies of
the world.
In order to achieve this, the
Government of India has taken up
a series of measures to radically
improve the ease of doing business. The government’s objective
is to make the regulatory environment easy and simple for businesses to flourish. It has effectively
used technology to converge and
integrate departments. Fourteen
services have been integrated with
eBiz portal, which will function as
a single-window portal for obtaining clearances from various government agencies.
Make in India has already created a strong impact in form of improved business environment and
economic growth. India is now
first amongst the world’s most attractive investment destinations
and the world’s fastest growing
economies. It is first among 100
countries in the growth, innovation, and leadership index. India is
amongst 110 investment destinations polled globally. The country
is seventh most valued national
brand in the world. India’s rank
jumped 12 positions in ease of Doing Business 2016 list by World
Bank and moved 16 places in the
Global Competitiveness Index
Prime Minister Narendra Modi with party members during the launch of ‘Make in India’ campaign on September 25, 2014.
Tuesday, January 26, 2016 |
IndIa-Qatar tIes scale new heIghts
Continued from pg1
There have also been other high-level contacts between the two countries during this period. External
Affairs Minister Smt Sushma Swaraj and Minister of
Foreign Affairs of Qatar HE Dr Khalid bin Mohammad
al Attiyah co-chaired the India-GCC Ministerial meeting on the sidelines of the 70th UNGA in New York on
September 30, 2015.
Law and Justice Minister Shri DV Sadananda
Gowda met his Qatari counterpart during his visit to
Doha as the leader of the Indian delegation to the 13th
United Nations Congress on Crime Prevention and
Criminal Justice in April 2015. Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Petroleum & Natural Gas Shri
Dharmendra Pradhan had a fruitful visit to Doha on
November 8-10 2015, leading a high-level delegation to
the 6th Asian Ministerial Energy Roundtable. Qatar’s
Minister of Transport and Commander of Qatar Emiri
Air Force visited Aero India Exhibition at Bengaluru
in February 2015. Earlier that month, India’s National
Security Advisor visited Doha.
The Government and people of India greatly admire the strides being made by Qatar in education and
research, infrastructure; business, finance and investments, sports, travel and tourism and other areas, and
are keen to expand collaborations to the mutual benefit of both sides. Besides official interactions, peopleto-people contacts and initiatives by private sector are
energising dialogue and cooperation in various sectors.
With its huge and growing energy needs, India
greatly values Qatar’s vital partnership in the energy
sector. Qatar is the largest supplier of LNG to India.
There is a large and expanding market for Qatar’s LNG,
oil and petrochemical sectors in India.
Indian companies are pursuing collaborations in
infrastructure, communications and information technology, energy and other areas in Qatar, to the mutual
benefit of both sides. The extensive infrastructural
development in Qatar as it prepares to host the prestigious FIFA World Cup in 2022, and the world-class
competences and competitiveness of India’s corporate
sector, offer attractive opportunities to both sides.
The huge potential for significantly increasing Qatar’s investment in India, especially in view of the new
initiatives of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi’s
Government, also presents a win-win situation for
both countries.
Both sides have been taking active steps to further
Crew of Fath Al Khair Dhow were given a warm and enthusiastic reception on arrival in Mumbai.
expand economic and commercial partnership, with
several positive developments. Petronet of India and
RasGas of Qatar signed a Sale Purchase Agreement
(SPA) for additional annual supply of one million metric tons of LNG by RasGas in New Delhi on December
31, 2015. The composition of India-Qatar Business Forum has been finalised.
A multi-sectoral delegation from the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) led by ClI’s Presidentdesignate visited Doha on October 20-21, 2015. Qatar
Chamber of Commerce and Industry and Embassy of
India are organising an event to promote the participation of Qatari businessmen and investors at the ‘Make
in India’ Week in Mumbai from February 13-18, 2016.
We are also looking forward to high-level participation from Qatar at the Indian Investment Summit in
New Delhi on February 4-5, 2016. The largest ever (65)
number of Indian companies participated in ‘Project
Qatar’ Exhibition in May 2015.
Doha Bank’s full-fledged branch in Mumbai was
inaugurated in April 2015. Qatar Airways started its
flight to Nagpur on December 1, 2015. Nagpur is the
13th destination in India for regular Qatar Airways
flights from Doha. This is an illustrative and not an exhaustive list.
Both sides took further steps to strengthen defence
cooperation. As a follow up of the 4th Joint Defence
Cooperation Committee (JDCC) held in New Delhi in
January 2015, a team from Joaan bin Jassim Command and Staff College visited India in April 2015. Two
warships of Indian Navy’s Western Fleet, INS Delhi
and INS Trishul, paid a goodwill visit to Doha from
September 14-17, 2015.
The visiting officials had fruitful discussions with
senior defence officials of Qatar. A high level delegation
led by the Commander of the Qatar Emiri Naval Force
will be participating in the International Fleet Review
scheduled to be held at Vishakhapatnam from February 4-8, 2016.
India deeply appreciates Qatar’s support as a cosponsor of its resolution at the United Nations General
Assembly, adopted unanimously with a record 177 cosponsors, declaring June 21 as the International Day of
Yoga (IDY), and for various activities to celebrate the
first IDY in Qatar. We are grateful to Government of
Qatar and Q-Post for the release of a commemorative
stamp to mark this occasion.
It is heartening that several visits and events have
taken place in recent months in the areas of tourism,
sports and arts and culture, including a programme
to showcase Indian tourism; participation of Indian
teams in major athletics, boxing, volleyball, wrestling,
squash and other competitions and widely acclaimed
cultural programmes held at Katara — The Cultural
Village Foundation, such as a Kathak classical dance
performance sponsored by the Indian Council for Cultural Relations, ‘A Passage to India’ Community Festival, an event on Yoga, and exhibitions on India by
creative young photographers of Qatar Photographic
Society. We are grateful to Katara for their enormous
guidance and support in organising these programmes.
Fath Al Khair Dhow undertook a historic voyage
from Doha to Mumbai, via Oman between October 5
and November 17, 2015.
On arrival in Mumbai, the crew were given a warm
and enthusiastic reception at a ceremony presided over
by Hon’ble Governor of Maharashtra. We salute HH
the Father Emir for his patronage of this unique initiative, which was launched in 2013 as a commemoration
by Qataris of the historical pearl trade route. It is significant that on its second voyage, Fath Al Khair sailed
to Mumbai, whereas its first voyage was to neighbouring Gulf countries.
Ensuring the well-being and welfare of Indian nationals in Qatar is the highest priority for Embassy of
India. We have a regular, active and inclusive outreach
to the Indian community. In particular, we have an
extremely important responsibility towards the large
number of Indian workers who are making a vital contribution to the progress of Qatar with the sweat of
their brows. We remain in close contact with the authorities concerned in Qatar regarding the well-being
of our workers and other Indian nationals, and appreciate their cooperation and support. We welcome the
process of labour reforms undertaken by the Government of Qatar, and look forward to the implementation
of further steps being considered.
As we celebrate our 67th Republic Day, I warmly
congratulate the Indian community in Qatar for all that
they do for the development and progress of their host
country, and for further strengthening the bonds of
friendship and cooperation between India and Qatar.
~ HE Sanjiv arora
AmbAssAdor of IndIA to QAtAr
| Tuesday, January 26, 2016
PM unveils $1.5 bn fund
for startuPs
Prime Minister Narendra Modi launches a number of initiatives,
including tax breaks to boost startups
rime minister Naren-
launched a number of
initiatives to support the
country’s startups, including a 100 billion rupee ($1.5 billion) fund and a string of tax breaks
for both the companies and their investors.
The Prime minister’s high-profile
event in New Delhi – attended by hundreds of investors and entrepreneurs,
including the founder of taxi-hailing
app Uber, Travis Kalanick – promised
a shot in the arm for the sector, with
exemptions from tax and compliance
inspections for three years.
“i urge all entrepreneurs to create companies that solve india’s
problems and create jobs,” he told a
packed auditorium in New Delhi.
“Start-up does not mean a billion-dollar company where thousands of people work. it is about
employing even five people, and developing india.”
Online companies such as e-commerce marketplaces and Snapdeal,
along with ride-sharing company
Ola, have highlighted the potential
for home-grown technology successes in a country best known for capitalising on cheap engineering talent
as the world’s back office.
However, the push by modi government is the first time indian policymakers have announced an agenda
directly aimed at promoting start-ups
and entrepreneurship.
The Pm unveiled plans for a new
100 billion rupee fund: a structured
fund of funds that will invest in venture capital funds over a period of
four years, financed by the government and the state-owned Life insurance Corp (LiC).
He also said start-up companies
would benefit from cheaper and faster
patent applications, enjoying 80 percent rebates on the cost of patents. A
mobile app would allow companies to
be set up within a day, he promised.
moreover, they will be exempt
from income tax for the first three
years in which they make a profit.
Their investors could also benefit:
recognised funds of funds could see
exemptions from capital gains tax,
he added. The announcements, at a
government-organised conference on
start-ups in New Delhi, come months
after Prime minister made a whirlwind tour of Silicon Valley, meeting the chief executives of Facebook,
Google and Apple.
india, with a rapidly expanding
population of internet users, is seen
as one of the world’s fastest growing startup hotspots. Venture capital
funds including Sequoia and Tiger
Global have raised multi-billion dol-
lar funds for their indian investments
in recent years. The National Association of Software and Services Companies estimates the number of new
companies launched in india grew by
40 percent in the last year.
Japan’s Softbank has said it would
“seriously” accelerate investments in
india, comparing the growth in india’s internet economy to China’s a
decade ago. Softbank had previously
said it would invest $10 billion in india over 10 years.
WeWork, a New York-based provider of shared office space, used the
conference to announce its indian
launch plans.
Qatar slashes gas
price for India
eTrONeT LNG, india’s biggest gas importer, has
signed a revised contract with rasGas of Qatar to import gas at a lower price. The new contract will save
downstream consumers in india around rs40 billion a year,
according to Oil minister Dharmendra Pradhan.
“The new formula between the two companies is in the
interests of both. Whereas the previous contract meant that
Petronet had to buy LNG from rasGas at $12-13 per mmBtu, the new contract means a price of $6-7 per mmBtu,”
Petroleum and Natural Gas minister Dharmendra Pradhan
said at the signing function.
He added that the penalty of rs120 billion imposed on
Petronet for importing less gas in 2015 than was agreed in
the previous contract has been waived.
“This year started off with an inclination that gas prices
would fall. ironically, we were buyers but were still anxious. This agreement will relieve much of anxiety,” Prabhat
Singh, mD & CeO of Petronet LNG, said during the event,
adding that the agreement was reached on November 10,
but was signed later.
Pradhan said that the new pricing formula under the reworked contract, which came into effect on January 1, will
apply to 7.5 million tonnes of LNG india has agreed to buy
from rasGas until the long-term contract ending in April
2028. Petronet has agreed to purchase an additional 1 million tonnes under the revised contract.
The Oil minister also noted that January 1, 2016 would
mark exactly one year of the government’s direct cash transfer scheme (PAHAL), saying that in that period it has become the world’s biggest digital public distribution system.
He also added that 5,800,000 beneficiaries of the LPG
subsidy had chosen to give it up voluntarily.
“most of the people giving it up were those we weren’t
targeting. We found that retired school teachers, retired
civil servants, etc, were giving up their subsidy so that those
without an LPG connection could get one,” Pradhan said,
adding that the government has added 5 million new LPG
connections to its existing network.
Tuesday, January 26, 2016 |
The Prime Minister said that Team India- people from all walks of life whether they are celebrities, diplomats, social workers, educationists, community leaders or spiritual leaders–all of them have taken a major responsibility to train the
common man without criticising anybody and to make the mission a success.
Swachh Bharat MiSSion
caMpaign catching up
More and more people & institutions on board for realisation of Swachh Bharat dream
s the nation braces to scale
new heights on the flagship
programme of ‘swachh
Bharat Mission’ (sBM)
after its year-long drive,
general awareness about cleanliness
and hygiene is spreading. success stories and increasing commitment to the
cleanliness indicate that it is not a paper
tiger project.
Profiling the mission and its accomplishments, not only officials but many
social institutions and other bodies, involved in the mission, flag piles of data.
statistics, they say, do not matter in such
a gigantic task which has picked up momentum. More and more people and government and non government institutions
are on board for the realisation of swachh
Bharat dream. Urban Development Minister M Venkaiah Naidu said sBM aims at
creating demand for sanitary services and
infrastructure and involves motivating
people to adopt right attitudes.
He described the sBM as the mother
of all new missions launched by the Central government because of its unique
nature. A ‘Clean India’, the minister said,
is the most profound statement that the
county can make to the world. The minister said that since the launch of the mission in October 2014 by the Prime Minister, people across the country and age
groups have been inspired by its philosophy and objectives and this is its major
A campaign has been launched to propel people into action for cleanliness. The
areas to be covered include agricultural
and grain markets, religious and tourism
places, educational institutions, resident
welfare associations, under passes and
flyovers, cantonment boards, water bodies and recreation places, hospitals, old
cities and government offices.
A swachh Baharat conclave is also
being planned. Based on reports till August 2015, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh,
Karnataka, Punjab, Chattisgarh, Andhra
Pradesh, Rajasthan and Haryana have
performed well in respect of construction of individual household toilets. As
against the target of construction of 25
lakh (2.5 million) household toilets in
urban areas till March this year, construction of 16.45 lakh (1.64 million)
toilets has been taken up and 4.65 lakh
(465,000) toilets have already been
built. Major states including UP, Bihar
and Tamil Naidu are still to pick up momentum, said the minister on the first
anniversary of the sBM. According to
him, toilet construction is still to begin
in five Union Territories (UTs) of Andaman & Nicobar Islands, Chandigarh,
Daman & Diu, Dadra and Nagar Haveli
and Delhi and four North-East states
of Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Meghalaya and Tripura and southern states
Kerala and Tamil Nadu.
Regarding construction of community
and public toilets in urban areas, government records say as against target of
building 100,000 toilet seats by March
2016, construction of 94,653 toilet seats
has been taken up and 24,233 seats have
already been built.
The minister said solid waste management is the largest component of the
mission in urban areas and till August
this year, 100 percent door-to-door collection of municipal solid waste has been
reported in 31,593 of the total 78,003
wards in urban areas of the country and
the mission is on course to achieve the
target of door-to-door collection of 50
percent of solid waste by Marc 2016.
As against the target of processing of
35 percent of 1,42,580 tonnes of solid
waste being generated every day in urban areas, 17.34 percent is being processed at the moment.
Naidu said that surat and Morbi in
Gujarat have already met the mission’s
targets of construction of 6,634 and 3,028
toilets. Ahmedabad and Mahisagar, also
in Gujarat, are very close to meeting
the mission’s targets of construction of
22,562 and 3,028 toilets. In respect of solid waste management, Chandigarh leads
the list of good performers with 100 percent processing followed by Meghalaya
(58 percent), Delhi (52 percent), Kerala
and Manipur(50 percent), Telangana (48
percent), Karnataka(34 percent) and Andaman & Nicobar Islands (30 percent).
Ahmedabad (64 wards), surat (38), Mahisagar (27) and Morbi (14 wards) in Gujarat and Andaman & Nicobar Islands (30
wards) have reported 100 percent doorto-door collection of solid waste.
Under swachh Bharat Mission in
urban areas, construction of 1.04 crore
(over 10 million) household toilets and
5.28 lakh (528,000) community and public toilet seats besides 100 percent dooto-door collection of solid waste and its
disposal are envisaged at a total cost of
Rs66,009 crore (Rs660.09 billion).
Many ministries in the central gov-
ernment have embarked upon their own
programmes and the Railway Ministry’s
drive came in sharp focus both for the
achievements and lapses as aspirations
of passengers swung upscale. The mission is the centre of discussions almost
every day.
Debates about menace of diseases
could be combated effectively by initiatives like cleanliness and hygiene and
mass awareness programmes. “Imagine
the quantum of its impact on human lives
and strain on the country’s health system,
if missions like swachcht Bharat would
have not been launched,” said a middleaged employee who quoted instances of
cleanliness drives in colonies and people’s
Between 2010-14, as many as 820
people died of dengue. Medical experts
say solution to such diseases lies in clean
environment and people getting aware
of cleanliness. At many places, residential welfare societies (RWAs) took part
in cleanliness drives and purchased fogging machines through personal contributions. sreedharan hailing from Kerala
the drive has picked up momentum in his
state and now, municipalities are providing specifically-designed tubes for degradable garbage which gets converted into
manure in a stipulated period.
such practices, sreedharan said,
should be replicated in other parts of
the country. The mission aims to make
the nation litter and open defecationfree by 2019.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had
launched the programme on the Gandhi
Jayanti Day and in the 69th Independence
Day address from the ramparts of the Red
Fort he proudly announced achievements
of the mission. The Prime Minister said
that Team India- people from all walks
of life whether they are celebrities, diplomats, social workers, educationists, community leaders or spiritual leaders–all of
them have taken a major responsibility to
train the common man without criticising
anybody and to make the mission a success. He said the mission got full support
from millions of youth and they became
the greatest ambassadors of ‘swachh
Bharat Abhiyaan’.
He said they prevent their parents
from littering in their homes. The PM
said it was his belief that such a country
where children are so much aware and
committed to cleanliness, it is bound to
become clean. “In 2019, we are about to
celebrate the 150th birth anniversary of
the Father of the Nation Mahatma Gandhi
and on that occasion we have to handover
‘swachh Bharat’ as a tribute. There cannot
be a greater tribute to Mahatma Gandhi
on his 150th birth anniversary,” he said.
“The task has just started, but I have
to take it forward, not to stop it, not to
get satisfied. When we started work,
the Team India figured out its responsibilities, we realised that there were
262,000 schools, where more than 4.25
lakh (425,000) toilets were required to
be built. This figure was so huge that any
government could rethink to extend the
deadline, but it certainly was the resolve
of the Team India that no one sought any
extension,’’ he added.
The PM said that by August 15 last
year, the Team India had nearly achieved
the target of building all the toilets.
Latest figures reveal that more than
4.18 lakh toilets (418,000) have been
made in 35 states and Union Territories
to provide separate facilities for boys and
girls in schools. The ‘swachh Bharat’ campaign ever since it was launched by the
Prime Minister on October 2, 2014 has
raised massive public response.
Digital india, a big catalyst of change
F all the initiatives an-
nounced by the Centre, the
Digital India programme
is the most ambitious, with
the power to transform the lives of
people as never before.
The communication revolution has changed people’s lives
but its possibilities have not been
harnessed fully to give them easy
access to public utilities, to provide
services and to empower citizens.
The digital divide is still very wide.
Internet access and speed are
very low, with only 10 crore broadband subscribers in a country
of 125 crore people. But with 85
crore active mobile telephone users there is an opportunity to leapfrog into the age of e-governance
on mobile phones, short-circuiting
intermediate stages.
The benefits are immense.
Transparency in governance, direct access to services without intermediaries, saving
of costs, prevention of leakage of
public funds, faster development
and employment
creation on a large scale are some
obvious benefits. The programme
will go hand in hand with other
initiatives like the Make in India
and the Jan Dhan scheme and will
complement them.
The challenge is clear from
the aims. The plan is to digitally
connect every Indian and provide broadband connectivity to
every part of the country in the
next four years. A seamless broadband
will be laid across
2,50,000 villages
in the coming
months with the
proposed BharatNet. The facilities
to be made available are digital lockers to store
documents, an e-sign framework
to digitally sign documents with
Aadhaar authentication, digitisation of documents including land
records, online registration in hospitals and extensive use of digital
tools in education. Emergence as a
centre of excellence in the Internet
of Things space is another aim. It
also envisages development of a
large IT and electronics industry
by 2020 so that imports in this
sector can be stopped by then and
10 crore new jobs can be created.
The difficulties in realising
the digital dream are equally
daunting. The national fibre optic network, which is crucial for
the programme, has been slow
in making and has seen many
failed deadlines. The allocation of
spectrum has seen many controversies. Apart from the creation of
massive infrastructure, changes in
laws will be required in some areas. Issues of privacy, cyber security
and data protection will have to be
addressed seriously.
Investment is going to be huge.
The private sector has committed
itself to an investment of Rs4.5
lakh crore, which will have to be
in the form of big public-private
partnerships. However, the most
requirement for the success of the
programme will be the willingness
of authorities to make governance
transparent, corruption-free and
| Tuesday, January 26, 2016
Tuesday, January 26, 2016 |
| Tuesday, January 26, 2016
boost to Qatar-india relations
Fath Al Khair cultural voyage to India
hE second edition of Fath al Khair, a cultural voy-
age to trace the pearl trade route that existed between the arab world and India in the past, was
flagged off at the beach of Katara in Doha on October
5 on a historic 44-day voyage to the Indian port of
Mumbai with a 30-member team of sailors.
Fath al Khair 2 dhow reached Mumbai on October
24 and was received by Governor of Maharashtra Vidyasagar Rao along with Qatar’s ambassador to India
ahmed Ibrahim al abdullah, Qatar’s Consul General in
Mumbai hamad bin Mohamed al Dosari and Katara
General Manager Dr Khalid bin Ibrahim al Sulaiti.
Following a week-long stay in India, Fath al
Khair 2 left Mumbai for Oman on October 31.
Kathak dance troupe visits Doha
Reception of Fath Al Khair
ber 17. the Indian ambassador accompanied
by Defence attache attended the reception
ceremony on the Katara beach.
the Father Emir his highness Sheikh hamad bin Khalifa al thani graced the occasion
and welcomed the crew of Fath al Khair 2. the
return of Fath al Khair 2 Dhow coincided with
the inauguration of 5th traditional Dhow Festival at Katara. the Indian ambassador met captain of the dhow hassan Essa al Kaabi and the
crew and conveyed congratulations on successful completion of the historic voyage to Mumbai
and the return via Oman.
Reliance Group chairman Anil Ambani’s visit
hai ambani leading a team of senior executives visited Doha on august 30.
ambani’s visit underlined Reliance
Group’s interest in playing a larger role in
the growing economic partnership between
India and Qatar. after meeting Indian ambassador to Qatar hE Sanjiv arora, ambani called on Prime Minister and Minister
of Interior hE Sheikh abdullah bin nasser
bin Khalifa al thani, Minister of Finance
hE ali Shareef al Emadi, Sheikh abdullah
bin Mohammed bin Saud al thani, CEO of
Qatar Investment authority, Sheikh abdullah bin Saoud al thani, Governor of Qatar
Central Bank and Saad Sherida al Kaabi,
President & CEO, Qatar Petroleum.
ambani also met a number of top Qatari
businessmen and investors at an interaction hosted by Dr R Seetharaman, Group
CEO, Doha Bank, and his team. akbar al
Baker, Group CEO, Qatar airways, also attended the event.
ambani discussed business cooperation with Qatar. Sheikh abdullah and Qatari businessmen said that there was vast
scope to expand business collaborations
with India.
Reliance Group that includes Reliance
Communications, Reliance Capital, Reliance Infrastructure, and Reliance Power,
is amongst India’s top five business houses
and has the world’s largest shareholder/investor base of over 13 million.
Sanjiv arora addressed a meeting on november 26 to commemorate the ‘Constitution Day’.
the meeting started by observing a
minute of silence in tribute to the
victims of the 26/11 terrorist attacks in Mumbai and other such
attacks. the ambassador underlined India’s principled and steadfast position against terrorism. he
highlighted the ideals and principles enshrined in the Indian Constitution and paid rich tributes to the architect of the constitution Bharat Ratna Dr BR
ambedkar. after his brief remarks, the ambassdor led all officials in collectively reading
the preamble of the Constitution in hindi and
two documentary films on the constitution of India, ‘Taana Baana-The Warp &
Kuwari, assistant Undersecretary, Ministry of Environment attended Mangalyaan tech Fest 2015 held
at Birla Public School in Doha on november 20 organised by the Indian Cultural Centre.
after the launch of Mangalyaan, India’s Mars Orbiter Mission on September 24, 2014, the ambassador
had suggested to the ICC, the apex organisation of
nearly 100 socio-cultural associations of Indian community in Qatar functioning under the aegis of the Indian embassy in Doha, to organise a tech fest annually
with the participation of students of 14 Indian schools
in Qatar.
ICC also instituted ICC-Mangalyaan ambassador’s
Rolling trophy. the ambassador and Kuwari presented tech Fest prizes to participants, including the Rolling trophy, which was presented to DPS-MIS team.
Weft of India’ and ‘India - The Spirit of Freedom’ were screened on the occasion.
the Constitution Day was commemorated at an event held at the Indian Cultural
Centre. Indian schools in Qatar organised
similar activities and programmes to commemorate the Constitution Day and solemnly remembered the victims of 26/11
Mumbai terror attacks.
Road Show on Indian tourism
Petroleum minister’s visit
InIStER of State for Petroleum &
natural Gas Dharmendra Pradhan
arrived in Doha on november 8 with
a high-level delegation to take part in the
6th asian Ministerial Energy Roundtable
(aMER) on november 9. Prime Minister
and Minister of Interior hE Sheikh abdullah bin nasser bin Khalifa al thani and
Minister of Energy and Industry hE Dr
Mohammed bin Saleh al Sada met the delegation. the Indian minister called on his
Qatari counterpart the same day and addressed the first plenary session of the 6th
CII delegation arrives
7-MEMBER delegation from CII
led by Dr naushad Forbes, President-designate, CII, and Director
Forbes Marshall visited Doha from
October 20 to 21. the team included
CEOs and other senior representatives of companies operating in a
wide range of sectors.
the embassy arranged interactive
sessions for the delegation with officials at Qatar Chamber of Commerce
& Industry and Indian Businessmen
Professional network, officials of
Ministry of Economy & Commerce.
the delegation also met abdulaziz
bin nasser al Khalifa, CEO of Qatar
Development Bank.
Later, Forbes met Sheikh Faisal
bin Qassim al thani, Chairman of
Qatari Businessmen association
and head of al Faisal holdings.
Sheikh Faisal showed keen interest
in investing in India. Forbes also
addressed a plenary session of the
World Export Development Forum
on October 20.
nDIan Cultural Centre or-
ganised a function to celebrate Gandhi Jayanti on
October 2 in Doha. In his address, ambassador Sanjiv arora highlighted the inspirational
life and leadership of Mahatma Gandhi. he also spoke on
Swachch Bharat campaign
launched by Prime Minister
narendra Modi. a slide show
on the life of Gandhiji was displayed during the event, which
was followed by singing of
Bhajans and patriotic songs by
students of local Indian schools
and performances by cultural
organisations. the function
was attended by a large gathering of Indian nationals.
aMER. he held meetings with heads of a
number of other delegations as well.
amba Dutt Bhatt, technical Officer, national authority, Chemical Weapons Commission, Cabinet Secretariat, new Delhi,
participated in the regional meeting of
representatives from national authorities
of States Parties in asia to the Chemical
Weapons Convention organised by national Committee for the Prohibition of Weapons in collaboration with Organization for
the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons in
Doha from november 8 to10.
Indian ambassador
hE Sanjiv arora inaugurated ‘Incredible India’ - a
Road show on Indian tourism,
organised by India tourism,
Dubai, with the support and
cooperation of Indian embassy
at Marriott Marquis, a top hotel in Doha. the event was attended by top Qatari businessmen and representatives from
travel and tour companies.
the reception. Deputy Commander of Qatar
Emiri naval Forces Staff Major General Ibrahim Saad al Kubaisi was the chief guest.
Embassy officials and their families and students of Indian schools visited the ship on
September 16.
nDIan ambassador and Dr Mohammed bin Saif al
hE Indian ambassador hE
ambassador hE Sanjiv arora and the Commanding Officers of InS Delhi and InS trishul
hosted a reception on September 15 onboard
InS Delhi in Doha. Qatari officials, heads of
Mission and Defence attaches, representatives
of the Indian community and others attended
Mangalyaan Tech Fest 2015
Gandhi Jayanti celebrations
Constitution Day
Indian warships pay goodwill visit
hE two warships of Indian navy’s Western
Fleet, InS Delhi and InS trishul, paid a goodwill visit to Qatar from September 14-17. Senior officials of the Qatari armed Forces and the
Qatari Emiri navy held deliberations with the
officials of the two ships.
ELIanCE Group Chairman anil Dhirub-
Indian Embassy helps organise
social, cultural programmes
hE Fath al Khair 2 dhow returned on novem-
KathaK dance troupe led by Prachee Shah visited
Doha from august 4 to 7 last year. the troupe included
Ganesh hiralal (harmonium player), Sraboni Chaudhuri (vocalist), Farooque abdul Lateef Khan (Sarangi player) and Umesh hasal (tabla player).
the India Embassy in Doha organised two performances as part of the celebrations of 69th Independence Day
of India. the troupe first performed at the Drama theatre
in the Katara Cultural Foundation Village.
Minister of Justice hE Dr hassan Lahdan al Mohannadi
was the chief guest. ambassador Ibrahim Yousif abdullah Fakhroo, Director, Department of Protocol, Ministry of
Foreign affairs of Qatar, Dr Khalid bin Ibrahim al Sulaiti,
General Manager of Katara and ambassadors and diplomats from other countries attended the event.
at the end of the spectacular performance, the chief
guest felicitated Prachee Shah and other artistes.
the troupe also performed at the auditorium of Birla
Public School. the embassy organised the performance in
cooperation with Indian Cultural Centre and the school. a
large number of Indians, including representatives of the
associations of the Indian community, and nearly 100 socio-cultural organisations affiliated to the ICC attended the
event. the events received extensive coverage in the media.
Indian team participates in WRO
thREE-MEMBER delegation from India consisting of
arvind Manjit Singh, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Culture,
Samarendra Kumar, Director, national Council of Science
Museums, Kolkata and Sudhanshu Sharma, Founder Director
of India StEM Foundation, attended World Robotics Olympiad
(WRO) held in Doha from november 6 to 8. they met students
from India participating in this global event. the delegation received the WRO flag at the closing ceremony on november 8 as
India would be hosting the next WRO in november this year in
new Delhi. the Indian students won a number of awards at the
Tuesday, January 26, 2016 |
Charting a new reform Path
Moody’s ratings revise India’s sovereign rating outlook to ‘positive’ from ‘stable’
n an environ-
modest, India
today stands as a bright
spot among the global
The International Monetary fund
(IMf) in its report projected India’s growth for 2015
at 7.3 percent and 7.5 percent for 2016.
In its report on november 12, 2015, the IMf said
that, while emerging economies growth remains fragile
and could be derailed in an
environment of declining
commodity prices, reduced
capital flows, and higher financial market volatility,
India’s growth will benefit
from recent policy reforms, a
consequent pickup in investment, and lower commodity
prices. Moody’s ratings revised India’s sovereign rating outlook to ‘positive’ from
foreign direct investment flows during the
2014-2015 reached $44
billion. The fDI has also
for the first time in seven
years exceeded the current
account deficit. The government’s continued push
towards fDI liberalisation
will continue to aid fDI
flows. The Financial Times
of London in its ranking of the top destinations
for greenfield investment
(measured by estimated
capital expenditure) in the
first half of 2015 shows India at number one, having
attracted roughly $31 billion, $3 billion more than
China and $4 billion more
than the US.
Administrative reforms,
simplification of approval
processes, including online
project approval and easier
environmental clearance
procedures, are expected
to improve business sentiment and the ease of doing business in India. The
Project Monitoring Group
(PMG) set up under the
Cabinet is reviewing a total
of 704 projects worth $451
billion, which have not received approvals because
of hurdles like lack of fuel,
green clearances and land
acquisition with investments.
The PMG has cleared a
total of 411 projects entailing investments of $253
billion. The government
has set an ambitious deadline of 2016 for implementing the Goods and Services
Tax (GST). A clear cut road
map for lowering corporate
tax from 30 percent to 25
percent over the next four
years has been laid down.
The government initiatives include nod for IPOs/
fPOs by banks to raise
funds as long as government equity remains 52 percent or over, tax benefits to
real estate and infrastructure investment trusts, 100
Smart Cities Project, $130
billion proposed spending
on railways over five years
on schemes including highspeed trains.
Two rounds of coal
block auctions have concluded and more are lined
up, impasse in mining sector has ended with the passage of new Bill for its regulation and development,
successful conclusion of
auctions for telecom spectrum for mobile telephony
and broadband.
The other initiatives are
single-window scheme for
clearances to steel, coal and
power projects, clarity in tax
treatment on income of foreign funds whose fund managers are located in India,
and transfer pricing for resident and non-resident tax
payers and waiving of retrospective imposition of a minimum alternative tax (MAT)
affecting foreign funds.
In november 2015, the
Cabinet approved a bailout
plan for state governmentowned electricity distribution companies (Discoms)
in a move that could fundamentally change India’s
power sector and reduce
the stress on books of banks
that have loaned money to
these financially unsound
The rescue plan called
Ujwal Discom Assurance
Foreign direct investment flows
during the 2014-2015 reached $44
billion. The FDI has also for the first
time in seven years exceeded the
current account deficit.
Yojna (UDAY), which is optional and to be operationalised through signing of a
tripartite memorandum of
understanding (MoU) between Ministry of Power,
the concerned state government and the Discom,
seeks to provide a solution
to state Discoms and empower them to break-even
in next two-three years.
The government also
awarded contracts to set
up two locomotive plants in
november 2015. The contracts are two of the first
and the largest to be awarded to foreign firms since
India last year allowed 100
percent fDI in the railway
sector. The General Electric
Co (GE) will build a diesel
locomotive factory and Al-
stom SA will set up an electric locomotive in the state
of Bihar. The plants will
be set up at an estimated
cost of around Rs2,052
crore (Rs20.52 billion) and
Rs1,294 crore (Rs12.94 billion) respectively. The two
projects are aimed at manufacturing 1,000 diesel locomotives and 800 electric
locomotives over the next
10 years. While the Railways
will have 26 percent equity
and provide land, the foreign
companies will have a stake
of the remaining 74 percent
in each of the plants. The
plants will start within three
years and 80 percent of all
parts used in the manufacture of the locomotives will
be sourced locally.
growth prospects have also
improved following recent
policy initiatives towards
unlocking coal and other
mining activity, liberalisation of the fDI limits (100
percent in railways, 49 percent in insurance, and 49
percent in defence with the
caveat that fDI in defence
could go up to 100 percent
with the control vested in
the hands of the Indian JV
partner and approval be
secured from the government) and a renewed thrust
on public investment in infrastructure, which would
help to improve the investment climate. To boost the
in the country, the government on november 10,
2015 further eased fDI
norms across 15 sectors.
Some of the new fDI norms
include: composite fDI cap
in the banking sector has
been raised to 74 percent,
minimum investment commitment and floor area
stipulation for the fDI
in construction has been
done away with, fDI limit
in news and current affairs
TV channels and fM radio
has been raised to 49 percent from 26 percent, fDI
limit in Teleports, Directto-Home (DTH), digital
cable networks, Mobile TV
has been raised from 74
percent to 100 percent. The
fDI of up to 49 percent under automatic route is now
allowed in Regional Air
Transport Services, fDI of
up to 49 percent is allowed
in the defence sector under
the automatic route and
if in excess of 49 percent
will be considered by foreign Investment Promotion
Board (fIPB).
The cap for approval
by the foreign Investment
Promotion Board (fIPB)
has been increased to Rs
5,000 crore (Rs50 billion)
from Rs 3,000 crore (Rs30
billion). The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) will only decide on fDI proposals not
under the automatic route
and beyond Rs 5,000 crore
(Rs50 billion).
As a result of the above
measures, India has moved
up 16 positions to rank
55th on a global index of
the world’s most competitive economies compiled
by the World Economic forum. The jump in India’s
position underlines the
country’s recent economic
recovery, improvement in
the competitiveness of the
country’s institutions and
its macroeconomic environment.
According to the Baseline Profitability Index of
the foreign Policy Journal, India has recently
been ranked no 1 among
110 countries making it the
world’s topmost investment destination.
Sanitary napkins from jute to
Rare surgery restores
help fight cervical cancer
spine of Emirati in Kerala
fTER experimenting for more
than four years, scientists at
IIT-Kharagpur have invented
sterilised sanitary napkins
made from jute-based cellu-
Experts feel that the innovation
could not only prove to be a turning
point for the dying jute industry, but
could also help reduce the number of
cervical cancer cases in the country.
“Sanitary napkins are made from
imported cotton or wood cellulose.
But IIT scientists have managed to extract cellulose from jute which is being used to make sanitary napkins,”
Arvind Kumar M, secretary of the national Jute Board (nJB), which funded the project, said.
Around 500 napkins were distributed
among women working in jute mills and
schoolgirls in some
districts of the state
for test. The jute-based
napkins were identical
to the branded ones
and the users were
never told about which
brands they were using. The feedback was
‘very encouraging.’
“The napkins were
made to pass the cytotoxicity tests to see if
there were any bacterial contaminations. We found none. Thereafter the
napkins were sterilised with UV rays
before being packed. We consulted
CM Ghosh, director of the state drug
control, before trying the products on
women,” B Adhikary, the man behind
the project and a professor with the
Material Science Centre
at IIT Kharagpur said.
nJB has been experimenting with various jute
products ranging from
home décor items to jute
geo-textiles used to construct roads but none of
them were able to lend a
fresh lease of life to the
industry. nJB officials
are, however, optimistic
that this innovation could provide the
required trigger.
“The new product, if marketed
properly, could tap a portion of the
Rs2,000 crore (Rs20 billion) personal hygiene market for women in
India. Second, it could bring down the
number of cervical cancer cases which
kills over 100,000 women, especially
in the age group of 15 to 44 years since
menstrual hygiene is one of the major
causes of this cancer,” an officer of the
nJB said.
Assistant director (technical) of
nJB, Mahadev Dutta, said the experiment initially started with jute caddies (a byproduct of the jute mills),
but later scientists extracted cellulose
and used it in the napkins to make it
“A special kind of super-absorbent
polymer was added to the jutecellulose. The product was then made to
undergo several safety tests and sterilised before being packed. We are now
transferring the technology from IIT
to the India Jute Industries’ Research
Association (IJIRA),” Dutta said.
“He had a back pain which was not din a rare surgery, doctors at the Kerala
Institute of Medical Sciences (KIMS) in agonised then. Over the last 10 years the
Trivandrum restored the spine of a UAE back pain worsened and his body started to
national, deformed by a rare disease called tilt due to scoliosis. He suffered from severe
adult scoliosis, a condition in which the pain and his movements got restricted. It became increasingly difficult for him to do his
spine bends to the side abnormally.
daily routine,” the stateA team of doctors
ment said.
headed by spine surgeon
The age factor, the
He heard about KIMS
Dr Ranjith Unnikrishnan
degeneration and the from a hospital in the UAE
restored the spine of
tilt of the spine, the
and decided to undergo
67-year-old Abduseid Abcompression of the
treatment at KIMS. The
dullah al Briki through
nerves posed chalage factor, the degenspine instrumentation in
lenges to doctors.
eration and the tilt of the
an operation lasting 12
spine, the compression of
hours. The patient could
walk the next day onwards and left the hos- the nerves as well as the pain posed challenges to the doctors.
pital fully recovered after seven days.
However, the doctors accepted the chalA statement issued by the hospital said
the patient had been suffering from the lenge and performed the surgery successdisease for nearly a decade. He had sought fully, the statement said. KIMS chairman Dr
treatment from a hospital in Chennai 10 M I Sahadulla said that the hospital was fully
years ago after he suffered from a condition equipped with all the facilities for crucial
surgeries including keyhole spine surgeries.
in which blood clotted below his knee.
| Tuesday, January 26, 2016
How ISRo cHanged tHe way
tHe woRld lookS at IndIa
2015 marked a special occasion for ISRO as it observed 40th anniversary of two of its pioneering projects
he year 2015 marked
an important milestone for the Indian
Space Research Organisation (ISRO) as
it observed the 40th anniversary
of two of its pioneering projects.
Two missions executed successfully in 1975 were the launch of
India’s first satellite, Aryabhatta,
onboard a Soviet launcher and an
experiment in education television called Satellite Instructional
Television experiment (SITe) using an American satellite.
Both projects were conducted
much before India had developed
its own launching capability, and
were actually designed to test use of
space technology for wider societal
applications. SITe was an experiment in deploying space technology
for tele-education, while Aryabhatta tested feasibility of tele-medicine
though its primary objective was
to gather scientific data. The seeds
of SITe were sown in the 1960s
by Vikram Sarabhai, father of the
space programme, who believed
that application of space technology could make a difference to development and economic growth.
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Read online 24X7....
Aryabhata, India’s first satellite, was launched in 1975.
Four decades later, has Sarabhai’s vision translated into reality? Technology-wise, the space
agency has made tremendous advancements. India is capable of
designing, fabricating and launching a range of satellites and offers
launch services to other countries
as well. Over the past two decades,
ISRO has launched satellites for
several applications — communication, broadcasting, weather
forecasting, disaster management, remote sensing, cartography, search and rescue, distance
education and strategic use. Soon
there will be a cluster of navigation satellites as well. All this,
along with scientific missions to
the moon and Mars, augurs well
for the emergence of ISRO as a robust space agency and positioning
of India as a leading space faring
however, one has to critically examine the real impact of
space technology on the ground.
The gains are clearly visible in
areas like broadcasting, weather
prediction and communications,
but the experience in areas like
telemedicine, distance education and remote-sensing has
rather been mixed. Going by the
number of remote-sensing satellites India has launched and the
expertise it has developed, ISRO
should be doing roaring business in remote-sensing imagery.
But, as performance audits in
recent years have revealed, utilisation of remote-sensing data has
been below par. Some satellites
were planned without adequate
assessment of data needs, resulting in idling of their capacity.
Data sharing policy is also cumbersome. As regards use of data
for government projects, lack of
coordination caused poor usage.
Audits revealed similar results
with ISRO’s distance education
satellite, edusat. Ground infrastructure for utilising signals
beamed from the satellite was
not ready in many states several
months after the satellite was up
in the sky nor was content generation up to the mark.
All these issues, most of which
are managerial rather than technological, need to be fixed before
ISRO is burdened with more application projects as is being done
currently. On the suggestion of
the prime minister, some 60
ministries and government agencies have proposed 170 projects
for using space technology under nine themes like agriculture,
energy, water management etc.
Instead of spreading available
resources sub-optimally across
multiple projects, it will be wiser
to focus on key applications like
education and tele-medicine by
correcting past mistakes and by
having a clear structure for managing large application projects.
Tuesday, January 26, 2016 |
The Constitution was framed by the Constituent Assembly of India, established by the members of the provincial assemblies elected by the people of India.
The making of ConsTiTuTion
Constitution contains 395 articles in 22 parts and eight schedules. It came into effect on January 26, 1950.
Indian Constitution
provides a comprehensive
framework to guide and govern the country, keeping in
view her social, cultural and
religious diversity.
A distinctive document with many
extraordinary features, the Constitution
is the longest written constitution of any
sovereign nation in the world. The original text of the Constitution contained
395 articles in 22 parts and eight schedules. It came into effect on January 26,
1950, the day that India celebrates each
year as the Republic Day. The number of
articles has since increased to 448 due to
100 amendments.
The Constitution was framed by the
Constituent Assembly of India, established by the members of the provincial
assemblies elected by the people of India.
Dr Sachidanand Sinha was the first president of the Constituent Assembly. Later,
Dr Rajendra Prasad was elected its president. Dr BR Ambedkar, the chairman of
its Drafting Committee, is considered the
chief architect of the Indian Constitution,
which provides a comprehensive and dynamic framework to guide and govern the
country, keeping in view her unique social, cultural and religious diversity.
It establishes the main organs – executive, legislature and judiciary, defining their powers, demarcating their responsibilities and regulating the inter-se
relationship. It inter alia lays down the
basic structure of governance and the
relationship between the government
and the people. The rights and duties
of citizens are also spelt out. The Constitution applies to the state of Jammu
and Kashmir with certain exceptions
and modifications as provided in Article
370 and the Constitution (application
to Jammu and Kashmir) Order, 1954.
It is the mother of all other laws of the
country. Every law enacted by the government has to be in conformity with the
The preamble to the Constitution
declares India to be a Sovereign Socialist Secular Democratic Republic and a
welfare state committed to secure justice, liberty and equality for the people
and promoting fraternity, dignity of
the individual and unity and integrity
of the nation. The objectives specified
in the preamble constitute the basic
structure of the Indian Constitution
which cannot be amended. The opening and last sentences of the preamble:
“We, the people... adopt, enact and give
to ourselves this Constitution” signifies
the power is ultimately vested in the
hands of the people.
Although Article 1 of the Constitution
says India shall be a Union of States, the
Constitution provides for a federal structure with clear division of powers between
the Centre and the states, each empowered by the Constitution to enact and legislate within their sphere of activity.
The seventh schedule contains three
legislative lists which enumerate subjects
of administration viz union, state and
concurrent legislative lists. The Central
government enjoys exclusive power to
legislate on the subjects mentioned in the
Union list. The state governments have
full authority to legislate on the subjects
of the state list. And both the Centre and
the state can legislate on the subjects
mentioned in the concurrent list with the
residuary powers vested in the Central
government. It can be said that India has
cooperative federalism. The Constitution
provides for the parliamentary form of
government with a bicameral legislature
at the Centre consisting of Lok Sabha
(Lower House of Parliament) and Rajya Sabha (Upper House of Parliament).
While the Lok Sabha consists of the elected representatives of people, the Rajya
Sabha consists of representatives elected
by the state legislative assemblies. The
President is the head of the state and the
Parliament. The Prime Minister, aided by
the Council of Ministers, heads the executive and is responsible for governance.
An impartial judiciary, independence
of the legislature and the executive, is one
of the main features of the Constitution.
The Supreme Court of India is the highest
court of the country and acts as guardian
of the Constitution and serves as the final
court of appeal.
Each state has a High Court as its highest court. Under powers of judicial review,
the Supreme Court and High Courts can
declare a law as unconstitutional or ultra
vires if it contravenes any provision of the
Constitution. This power of judicial review constitutes a middle path between
the American judicial supremacy on one
hand and British Parliamentary supremacy on the other. In order to ensure the impartiality of the judiciary, the judges are
appointed by a process free of influence of
the executive. The judges can only be removed by a rigorous process of impeachment to be approved by both the houses of
the Parliament.
The Constitution vests many fundamental rights in citizens. These are (i)
Right to Equality, (ii) Right to Freedom,
(iii) Right against Exploitation, (iv) Right
to Freedom of Religion, (v) Cultural and
Educational Rights and (vi) Right to Constitutional Remedies. An individual can
move the Supreme Court or the High
Passport India 2015 at a glance
21% Growth in Delivery of Citizen Services
● 1.2+ crore passport services delivered to citizens in India & abroad,
an increase of 21% compared to 2014 and 41% compared to 2013
● 18.66% rise in applications received in India
● 6.33 crore Indians held valid passport till December 31 (Up from
5.70 crore in 2014 and 5.19 crore in 2013)
● 1.14+ crore new Passport holders added during the years 2014-15
In Numbers
● 1-7
● 87%
● 5%
● 68%
Appointment availability days across India
Tatkal Passports issued within 3 days
Tatkal category applications (Down from 8% in 2013)
including PV (Up from 46% in 2014)
Average Police Verification time (Down from 49 days in
● 34 Days
● 61%
PVRs completed within 21 days (Up from
47% in 2014 & 37% in 2013)
● 71/29
First time / Reissue applicants
● 68/32
Male/Female applicants
● 18%
Students applicants
● 30 Years Average age of Passport applicant
● 1 Day
Youngest applicant
● 115 Years Oldest applicant
● 50,000+ Citizens Serviced per day within India
● 17
Language Call Centre
● 20,000+ Calls per day
● 2+ crore Hits per day on Passport Seva Portal
● 1+ lakh
SMSs sent per day
● 13.7+ lakh Mobile app. downloads till 31st Dec 2015
● 15,000+ Mobile app. hits per day
Extending Reach to Citizens
● Total number of Passport Seva Kendras : 85 (Up from 77)
● PSKs commenced operations in Agartala, Aizawl, Imphal, Kalaburagi, Shillong, Darbhanga, Gangtok & Karimnagar
● PSKs in Dimapur and Itanagar to commence operations in January
● 397 Passport Melas on holidays. 2.5+ lakh applications processed
during extended hours
● 124 Passport Seva Camps held at remote locations processing 51,000
● Passport Seva Mitra: 4-8 weeks Internship scheme launched for
graduate students to enable them to experience the benefit of e-Governance.
● 1.2 lakh applications submitted online at Common Service Centers
● Uttar Pradesh creates history. Emerges as the No.1 state for the first
time in terms of Passport Services (13.37)
● Another Record Created. For the first time 4 states become Passport
millionaire states; Uttar Pradesh(13.37), Maharashtra(11.87), Kerala(11.44), Tamil Nadu(10.08)
● 5 States with more than 5 lakh Passport Services; Gujarat(7.47),
Punjab(7.15), Karnataka(6.37), West Bengal(5.86), Telangana(5.38)
● Telangana, Meghalaya, Assam, Uttar Pradesh,
Manipur and Tripura saw a maximum growth
(35%-63%) in Passport application. National
growth rate – 18.66%
● 6 RPOs with more than 5 lakh Passport Services; Lucknow(9.48), Hyderabad(7.60),
● Missions/Posts in the UAE(2.5+)
and Saudi Arabia (1.5+) issued maximum
number of Passports abroad
Police Verification
● 87.02+ lakh Police Verification Reports(PVR) submitted. An increase of 22.5% over 2014
● 32.23% reduction in Police Verification Pendency
● All India average Police Verification time reduced to 34
days (Down from 49 days in 2013)
● 61% Police Verification Reports completed within desired
timeframe of 21 days (Up from 47% in 2014 & 37% in 2013)
● 95% Police Districts follow Online model of verification.
Court if there is an encroachment on any
of these rights. However, Fundamental
Rights in India are not absolute. Reasonable restrictions can be imposed. By 42nd
Amendment in 1976, fundaments duties
were added in the Constitution to remind
people that while enjoying their right as
citizens, they should perform their duties
for rights and duties are correlative.
Another novel feature of the Constitution is that it contains a chapter on
the directive principles of state policy
that are directives to the government to
implement them for establishing social
and economic democracy in the country.
Though not justiciable, these principles
are considered fundamental in the governance of the country.
There are many autonomous institutions set up under the Constitution which
perform a key role, such as Election Commission (responsible for holding free and
fair elections), Public Service Commission
(responsible for selection to main government services) and an Auditor General
(for independent audit of accounts of the
government and its agencies).
One of the strengths of the Constitution is that it is a dynamic instrument that
can evolve with time either by its interpretation or amendment. An amendment to
the Constitution is a difficult affair, and
normally needs, at least, two-thirds of
the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha to pass it.
However, the Constitution of India is one
of the most frequently amended constitutions in the world..
The success of the Indian Constitution
for a country as diverse and complex as
India continues to intrigue, impress and
inspire experts around the world.
A Year of Smart
Citizen Service Delivery
● 156 Districts moved online in 2015. 683 of 731 Police Districts are
now online integrated with Passport Seva System.
Minimum Government
● Acceptance of Birth Certificate in respect of abandoned/orphaned
children liberalised for providing passport services
● Liberalisation of the requirement of NOC by Govt. officials for passport applications
● Acceptance of registered rent agreement as proof of address
● Acceptance of self-attested documents
● Acceptance of Photo passbooks issued by Scheduled Private Sector
Indian Banks and Regional Rural Banks
● Online Integration with UIDAI for e-authentication of Aadhaar
| Tuesday, January 26, 2016
Smart citieS miSSion on the wing
Ninety-eight ‘Smart Cities’ identified; two more to join the league
mid an outcry over
poor civic amenities
in cities bursting at
the seams, work on
the ‘Smart Cities’ with
state of the art facilities-- automatic
traffic lights, sprawling solar panels dotting neat dwellings, clean
green campuses, digitalised working, round the clock vigil through
close-circuit cameras, has picked
up momentum. Visions are taking
definite shapes on drawing boards
with future 98 smart cities identified. Uttar Pradesh and Jammu &
Kashmir have to pick up one each
soon to take the tally to 100 cities.
With the announcement of future smart cities list, the clock has
started ticking away. The Narendra
modi government is pursuing the
smart city project to give it a desired
momentum with copious funds. Allocations plans have already been
announced. in a related development, after recent meltdown in the
Chinese financial markets and its
cascading impact the world over,
focus on infrastructure activities
has increased. development, especially of roads and highways, would
have a multiplier effect and create
rural jobs. Experts say the infrastructure is the backbone of the
smart city mission which is all set
to get a boost due to these developments.
Finance minister Arun Jaitley
recently said india can act as one
of the “other engines” of world economic growth with China sliding to
slower gears.
“So the world needs other engines to carry the growth process.
And in a slowdown environment
in the world, an economy which
can grow at 8-9 percent like india’s
certainly has viable shoulders to
provide the support to the global
economy,” Jaitley said. He said the
priority of the National democratic
Alliance Government is to ease the
business environment for the global investors from the Central government, down to states and local
bodies. Land acquisition, corruption, private investment with greater space for public are the main
challenges which, experts say, must
be tackled to ensure desired results
in a stipulated period with political
consensus to realise the mission.
The list of cities, unveiled recently by Urban development
minister m Venkaiah Naidu after
a nationwide “competition” between states includes Varanasi, Allahabad, Lucknow, Ghaziabad, Bareilly and Agra from Uttar Pradesh,
Tiruchirapalli, Thanjavur, Salem,
Vellore, Chennai, Coimbatore and
madurai from Tamil Nadu, Nashik,
Thane, Solapur, Nagpur, Navi
mumbai, Aurangabad and Pune
from maharashtra, and Bhopal,
indore, Jabalpur, Gwalior and Ujjain from madhya Pradesh. it also
encompasses Ahmedabad, Gandhinagar and Baroda in Gujarat,
and Bhagalpur and muzaffarpur in
Uttar Pradesh and Tamil Nadu
have the maximum number of 12
cities under the list followed by maharashtra with 10, madhya Pradesh
with seven, Karnataka and Gujarat
with six each, Rajasthan with four,
Andhra Pradesh, Bihar and Punjab
with three each. Of those chosen
for the project, 24 are capital cities, as many are business hubs and
18 cultural centres. The remaining
two smart cites aspirants will be decided in due course as J&K sought
more time to decide on its choices
for the project and UP has reported
that meerut and Raibareilly have
been tied in the valuation and this
is to be decided which one will be
The smart cities aspirants had
been chosen through an intra-state
competition. Each state and Union Territory has evaluated all the
urban local bodies in respective
states and Union territories, based
on existing service levels, financial
and institutional capacities and
past track record and reforms and
nominated the top scores, as per
the slots given to each state and UT.
Eight smart cities nominees have a
population of 100,000 and below,
while 35 cities and towns between
100,000 to 500,000. There are 21
cities, with a population ranging
between 500,000 and 1,000,000,
and 28 cities above 1,000,000 and
below 2,500,000. A set of five cities are in the population range of
2,500,000 to 5,000,000.
Four cities- Chennai, Greater Hyderabad, Ahmedabad and
Greater mumbai-have population
of above 5,000,000. Population
statistics suggest that 64 towns and
cities are in the category of small to
medium, while the remaining 34
are large ones. Nine capital citiesitanagar, Patna, Shimla, Bengaluru, daman, Thiruvananthapuram ,
Puducherry, Gangtok and Kolkata
could not be nominated for smart
cities development. “in one sense,
this non-inclusion goes to prove
that the selection of first stage of
competition was not swayed by the
status or importance of cities and
the selection was objective and as
per the stipulated criteria’’, Naidu
Names were finalised after
competitive selection process, taking into consideration all parameters including job opportunities
and enhanced economic activities.
Strategies are being drawn to involve locals in evolving smart solutions. Locals will be involved in
urban interventions.
The region-wise panels of reputed agencies for assisting smart
city aspirants for preparation of
smart city plans have been formed
by the urban ministry. in the second stage of the city challenge
competition, all smart city plans received by the Urban development
ministry will be evaluated, based on
a set of six broad criteria. The top
scoring 20 cities in the first round
of competition will be chosen for financing during this financial year.
The remaining will be asked to address the deficiencies identified before participating in the second and
the third rounds of competition.
Forty cities each will be identified
for financing during the second and
third rounds.
The Central government proposes to give financial support to
the mission to the extent of Rs
48,000 crore (Rs480 billion) over
five years. The chosen smart cities
will be given Rs100 crore (Rs1 billion) each per year over the next
five years. Accordingly, the Central
government has made a provision
of Rs480 billion for the next five
years for the smart cities mission.
The States/UTs and Urban local
bodies have to make a matching
Smart city plans will be implemented by a special purpose vehicle
to be set up for each identified city
to enable a focused effort for effective implementation. States/UTs
and Urban local bodies will have
50:50 equity in SPV. Private sector can also be roped in with equity
with the management control remaining with states/UTs.
Under the Smart cities and the
Atal missions, about 80 percent
of the country’s urban population
would be covered with the objective
of enhancing the quality of life. The
prime objective of the Smart Cities
mission is to enhance quality of urban life. Smart cities will have the
core infrastructure and will give a
quality and decent life to citizens. it
will create a clean environment and
provide smart solutions to problems. more than a dozen leading
countries have expressed keen interest to associate themselves with
this mission. These include the US,
UK, France, Spain, Germany, Netherlands, Sweden, Japan, China,
Singapore, israel and Australia.
The Smart Cities mission seeks
to ensure basic infrastructure services to enable a decent quality of life
in urban pockets and a clean and
sustainable environment, adoption
of smart solutions and provision of
more public spaces to the poor.
Mission Indradhanush: Aiming to expand immunisation coverage
HE ministry of Health and
Family Welfare of Government of india launched
mission indradhanush on
december 25, 2014 as a special
nationwide initiative to vaccinate
all unvaccinated and partially
vaccinated children under the
Universal immunisation Programme.
The mission focuses on interventions to expand full immunisation coverage in india from
65 percent in 2014 to at least 90
percent children in the next five
years. This will be done through
special catch-up campaigns to
rapidly increase full immunisation coverage of children by 5 percent and more annually.
The programme provides immunisation against seven lifethreatening diseases (diphtheria,
whooping cough, tetanus, polio,
tuberculosis, measles and hepatitis B) in the entire country. in
addition, vaccination against
Heamophilus influenza type B
and Japanese Encephalitis is provided in select districts/states.
The first phase of mission indradhanush started on April 7,
2015, which is also observed as
World Health day. A concerted
drive was carried on for a week
or more as the ground situation
demanded in the identified districts for four consecutive months
till July 2015, starting from 7th of
each month.
For the first phase, the Health
ministry identified 201 districts
with the highest number of partially vaccinated and unvaccinated children. These are termed
as the high-focus districts. Nearly
50 percent of all unvaccinated
or partially vaccinated children
are found in these 201 districts.
Eighty-two districts of these are
concentrated in the four states
of Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, madhya
Pradesh and Rajasthan and nearly 25 percent of the unvaccinated
or partially vaccinated children of
india are in these districts.
These districts were targeted
for intensive efforts to improve
the routine immunisation coverage in the country. The ultimate
goal is to protect all children and
pregnant women against vaccine-
preventable diseases in india.
in the second phase of mission indradhanush, 352 districts
have been selected including 279
mid-priority districts, 33 from the
Northeast states (from phase one
where activity was postponed)
and 40 districts from phase one
where large number of missed
out children were detected. The
second phase commenced from
October 7, 2015.
This was to be followed by
weeklong intensified immunisation drives for three consecutive
Within the districts, the mission will focus on the 400,000
high-risk settlements identified
by the polio eradication programme. These are the pockets
with low coverage due to geographic, demographic, ethnic and
other operational challenges.
Evidence has shown that most
of the unvaccinated and partially
vaccinated children are concentrated in these areas.
The high-risk areas identified by the polio eradication
programme will be targeted
through special immunisation
campaigns. These include populations living in areas such as
urban slums with migration,
construction sites, areas with
missed routine immunisation
sessions, among others.
The special focus on the planning, implementation and monitoring of the execution process
has ensured that mission indradhanush is one of the largest
full immunisation programmes
of the world, covering more than
75.5 lakh (7.55 million) children
and more than 20 lakh (2 million) pregnant women through
TT vaccine. more than 20 lakh (2
million) children were fully immunised against seven vaccine
preventable diseases.
Apart from vaccines, mission
indradhanush has expanded the
basket of services through provisioning of ORS packets and Zinc
tablets. more than 16 lakh (1.6
million) ORS packets and about
57 lakh (5.7 million) Zinc tablets
have been distributed.
Tuesday, January 26, 2016 |

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