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Indian Affairs

Steel Minister Chaudhary Birender Singh address Regional conference on ‘Enhancing steel consumption in India’

  • The maiden regional conference of Eastern States, on the theme of ‘Enhancing steel consumption in India’ was inaugurated by the Union Minister of Steel Shri Chaudhary Birender Singh today in Gangtok, Sikkim.
  • Considering the low per capita steel consumption at 61 Kg in India vis-à-vis the world average of 208 Kg, there is a significant potential for improving the domestic steel consumption and this conference will explore all such avenues of steel use promotion.

Tribal language Kurukh gets new lease of life

  • Kurukh, an endangered tribal language of the Dravidian family, is set to get a new lease of life in West Bengal.
  • Experts say that while most of the tribal languages in the State have their origins in the Austro-Asiatic and Tibeto-Barman families, Kurukh is an exception.
  • The only example of a tribal language having its origin from the Dravidian family is Malto, which is not spoken in West Bengal, but in the Rajmahal hills of Jharkhand.
  • Santhali, Munda and Hoe languages belong to the Austro-Asiastic family, while the languages spoken by the Lepcha, Tamang and Bhutia tribes of the Darjeeling hills were of the Tibeto-Burman group.
  • Jharkhand has recognised Kurukh as a language, and students can write their school final examination in its script.

International Affairs

India to attend Lahore meeting on Indus Water Treaty

  • The meeting is scheduled to be held in Lahore this month.
  • The Permanent Indus Commission is a bilateral commission of officials from India and Pakistan, created to implement and manage goals of the Indus Waters Treaty.
  • The agreement covers six rivers – the three eastern rivers of Ravi, Beas, Sutlej and their tributaries and the three western rivers of Indus, Jhelum, Chenab and their tributaries.

New batch of innovation scholars, writers and artists commence in-residence programme in Rashtrapati Bhavan

  • Ten Innovation Scholars, two Writers and two Artists selected under the In-Residence programme of Rashtrapati Bhavan commence their stay in Rashtrapati Bhavan.
  • In-Residence Programme was launched by the President of India on December 11, 2013, to encourage the creative and innovative potential of people and open up Rashtrapati Bhavan for greater participation and involvement of citizens in its activities.
  • Writers who will stay at the Rashtrapati Bhavan are Dr. Ashokkumar P. Chavda from Gujarat who is recipient of Sahitya Akademi Yuva Puraskar and Bengali poet, Shri Prabal Kumar Basu who received Gouri Bhattacharjee Memorial Award for his first book of poems ‘Tumeei Pratham’.
  • Artists who will stay at Rashtrapati Bhavan are Shri Rahul Shailendra Kokaste winner of 50th Maharashtra State Award, 2010 and Shri Dheeraj Yadav winner of 57thLalit Kala Academy 2016 Award.

The Union Minister of Finance, Shri Arun Jaitley, shared India’s experience in reforming its economy and attracting foreign direct investment (FDI) at the Nepal Investment Summit 2017 held at Kathmandu on 2-3 March, 2017 

  • Indian and Nepal share deep-rooted historical, cultural and religious ties which have enabled extensive cooperation in trade and economic fields between the two countries.
  • Union Minister of Finance stated that India and Nepal have wide ranging engagement in trade and investment and that Nepal is well poised to attract further FDI from India by creation of a conducive legal and regulatory framework.
  • India is Nepal’s largest partner in trade and investment with more than 2/3rd of Nepal’s trade being with India and India accounting for nearly 40% of total FDI in Nepal.
  • In order to address the issue of high trade deficit, Shri Arun Jaitley suggested that Nepal may expand its export basket by attracting more Indian investment in export-oriented industries.
  • The early completion of power projects like Upper Karnali and Arun-III, Nepal would be able to export electricity to India.
  • The issues of forest land and land acquisition which have delayed the projects should be resolved at the earliest.

 Awards and Recognition

Kohli Nominated for Polly Umrigar Award, Aswin for Dilip Sardesai Award

Kohli Nominated for Polly Umrigar Award
Kohli Nominated for Polly Umrigar Award

India captain Virat Kohli will be presented with the prestigious Polly Umrigar Award, given to BCCI’s International Cricketer of the Year, at the Annual Awards to be held in Bengaluru on March 8.
Virat Kohli will become the first to receive the award thrice. He had won the award in 2011-12 and in 2014-15.
Ashwin for nominated for Dilip Sardesai Award
Aswin Nominaed for Dilip Sardesai Award

R Ashwin will also become the first to receive the Dilip Sardesai Award given to the top performer on the West Indies tour twice.
In the four-match Test series last year, Ashwin, who was named the ICC cricketer of the Year, was the Man of the Series. He scored two centuries and picked 17 wickets including two five-wicket hauls in the series.
The all-rounder first won the Dilip Sardesai Award for the three-match Test series in 2011.


Environment Minister attends World Wildlife Day Celebrations at National Zoological Park

India has always been at the forefront of conservation of wildlife. Addressing the World Wildlife Day celebrations at the National Zoological Park Shri Anil Madhav Dave said that the number of lions in Gir stands at 522.
India has the highest number of tigers in the world and other species such as one-horned rhinoceros. Conservation of wildlife is our collective responsibility and duty.
The Government has been providing financial assistance to State Governments to supplement their share for the purpose of habitat improvement and conservation of wildlife. Some of the assistance is through dedicated “Projects”, namely, Project Tiger and Project Elephant.
Films on different aspects of wildlife conservation and illegal trade are also being screened since February 27, 2017 at the Indira Paryavaran Bhawan, Jor Bagh, New Delhi, for school students to raise awareness among them regarding the importance of wildlife conservation.
Not only the animals and birds, forests are also worshipped in the form of ‘Sacred Groves’. Several communities like Bishnois of Rajasthan, the Maldhari communities of Gir in Gujarat have contributed immensely towards the conservation and protection of wildlife.

Science and Technology

India to Host 10th International Conference on Theory and Practice of Electronic Governance: ICEGOV 2017

ICEGOV 2017 – the 10th three-day International Conference was organized in delhi from 7th March to Thursday, 9th March, 2017 by the Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology, Government of India, in collaboration with United Nations University and UNESCO.
Theme: Building Knowledge Societies: From Digital Government to Digital Empowerment
Key Objective: To explore how Digital Government can lead to Digital Empowerment by local knowledge.
It is a recognition of India’s emerging role as a massive cyber power, accelerated by the Digital India push which has acquired international acknowledgment. Digital Governance is  the future of Good  Governance, in sync with the Honourable Prime Minister’s vision to transform India into a transparent and digitally empowered country.

  • The use of technology to transform relationships between government and citizens, businesses, civil society
  • To inculcate an outlook to create new forms, paradigms, foundations for technology-enabled governance, collaboration, development

The 10th ICEGOV will bring together academia, governments, international organizations, civil society, and the private sector to share the insights and experiences in theory and practice of Digital Government.

DRDO Hands Over its Developed Products to Indian Army 

Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) handed over three of its products for induction into the Indian Army in a formal function.
The products are namely (i) Weapon Locating Radar (WLR), SWATHI, (ii) NBC Recce vehicle and (iii) NBC Drugs.
The Defence Minister Shri Manohar Parrikar who presided the function handed over the products to the Chief of the Army Staff General Bipin Rawat on behalf of DRDO.
DRDO has been developing a number of products for the Indian Army in support of their field operations and welfare of soldiers on ground. Many of these products have been inducted and are presently operational in field units. In 2016, the Weapon Locating Radar, NBC Recce Vehicle and a set of NBC Drugs had been successfully tested after extensive evaluation by competent evaluation teams/bodies.
Weapon Locating Radar (WLR), SWATHI, developed by DRDO’s Electronics & Radar Development Establishment (LRDE), provides fast, automatic and accurate location of all enemy weapons like mortars, shells and rockets firing within in its effective zone of coverage and simultaneously handles multiples projectiles fired from different weapons at different locations.
The NBC Recce Vehicle Mk-I, is developed by Vehicles Research & Development Establishment (VRDE) for carrying out post event recce of Nuclear, Biological and Chemical Contaminated areas. It is capable of collecting solid and liquid samples of biologically contaminated areas, mark the nuclear and chemical contamination zone and transfer the recce data speedily to support formations.
DRDO’s INMAS is actively engaged in research in the field of radio protectors, de-corporating agents and antidotes for Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear (CBRN) emergencies, combat casualty care and other life saving drugs. INMAS has carried out extensive research and laboratory trials in the past two decades to develop formulations for use as antidotes and de-corporating agents for CBRN emergencies. Out of the several formulas developed by INMAS, 15 drugs have been identified for induction.


De Matos appointed as U – 17 Football Team Coach

  • The All India Football Federation (AIFF) appointed portugal’s Luis Nortan de Matos as the Head Coach of the India U-17 team for the FIFA U-17 World Cup.
  • The World cup is scheduled to be held in October 2017.
  • De Matos Replace Nicloi Adam, who was resigned under controversial circumstances after a revolt from the players.


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