National - 2019 JANUARY

January 1

100% houses in 25 states electrified under Saubhagya Yojana.
The country achieved yet another milestone in the power sector with completion of electrification in 100% households in 25 states at year end.
Now, only about 10.48 lakh householdsare left to be electrified in 4 states - Assam, Rajasthan, Meghalaya and Chhattisgarh.
These states are also taking all concerted efforts to achieve, at the earliest, saturation of household electrification.
The central government launched 'Pradhan Mantri Sahaj Bijli Har Ghar Yojana' (Saubhagya) in September 2017 to achieve the goal of universal household electrification in the country by 31 March, 2019.

Lok Sabha passes Indian Medical Council (Amendment) Bill
It amends the Indian Medical Council Act, 1956 and replaces the Indian Medical Council (Amendment) Ordinance, 2018.
The Bill is aimed at revamping medical education regulatory system in the country.
The 1956 Act provides for supersession of the MCI and its reconstitution within a period of three years.
The Bill amends this provision to provide for the supersession of the MCI for a period of one year.

Government extends CLSS for MIG housing loans till March 2020.
Ministry of Housing & Urban Affairs headed by Minister of State Hardeep S. Puri, extended the Credit-Linked Subsidy Scheme (CLSS) for Middle Income Group (MIG) Scheme by another 12 months till March 31, 2020.
Around 93,007 beneficiaries have been covered till date and have already received Rs. 1,960.45 crore of subsidies in the scheme.
The scheme covers two income segments in the MIG viz. Rs. 6,00,001 to Rs. 12,00,000 per annum for MIG-I and Rs. 12,00,001 to Rs. 18,00,000 per annum for MIG-II.
About Credit-Linked Subsidy Scheme (CLSS):
Prime Minister NarendraModi on 31.12.2016 announced the commencement of a new Credit Linked Subsidy Scheme for the Middle Income Group (CLSS for MIG).
The purpose of the scheme was to meet the aspirations of young professionals and entrepreneurs of Middle Class Segment seeking housing loans for acquisition/ construction of houses (including re-purchase) from Banks, Housing Finance Companies and other such notified institutions.
About Ministry of Housing & Urban Affairs:
Minister: Hardeep Singh Puri (MOS independent charge)
Headquarters: Nirman Bhawan, New Delhi

Govt can check online food, grocery delivery items any time: FSSAI
National food regulator, Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) issued guidelines to enable government to monitor the online food and grocery operators such as Grofers and BigBasket as well as food delivery platforms like Swiggy and Zomato any time.
The guidelines are part of directives issued by the regulator to re-operationalise licensing and registration of e-commerce food companies.
An image of the said food should be out up in the platforms of the Companies so that consumers can recognize the product.
A remaining shelf life of 30% or 45 days of the food should be maintained before expiry at the time of delivery.
Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI):
Headquarters: New Delhi.
Chief Executive Officer: Pawan Kumar Agarwal.
Chairperson: Ms. Rita Teaotia.

January 2

Government sets up export promotion cell for MSMEs
 The MSME ministry has established an export promotion cell to create a sustainable ecosystem for micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs).
The benefits likely to accrue from the setting up of the cell include integration MSMEs intoglobal value chain, evaluation of readiness of MSMEs to export their products and services, and recognition of areas where improvements are required in order to be able to export effectively and efficiently.
About Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises:
Minister: Giriraj Singh (MOS independent charge)
Headquarters: Udyog Bhawan, New Delhi

Capacity Building Programme for Elected Women Representatives (EWRs) of Panchayati Raj Institutions.
Minister of State forWomen and Child Development Ministry, Dr. Virendra Kumar announced that Capacity Building Programme for Elected Women Representatives (EWRs) of Panchayati Raj Institutions across 18 states was initiated by the government of India. To work as a forum to empower EWRs by developing leadership capacities through training.
Under this, State Institute of Rural Developments (SIRDs) and State Resource Centres (SRCs) will collaborate with Ministry of Women and Child Development in conducting training programmes across the States.

Panel suggests not to allow new Engineering colleges from 2020
A government appointed panel headed by IIT- Hyderabad chairman B.V.R. Mohan Reddy has suggested to the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) to stop setting up new engineering colleges from 2020 and review the creation of new capacity every two years.
The panel has also suggested that no additional seats should be approved in traditional engineering areas such as mechanical, electrical, civil and electronics.
It has also recommended that institutes should be encouraged to convert current capacity in traditional disciplines to emerging new technologies as the current capacity utilization in traditional disciplines is just 40% as opposed to 60% seat occupancy in branches such as computer science and engineering, aerospace engineering and mechatronics
About All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE):
Chairman: Anil Sahasrabudhe
Headquarters: New Delhi
Parent Agency: Department of Higher Education, Ministry of Human Resource Development

January 3

Cabinet approves setting up HLC for implementation of Assam Accord
The Union Cabinet took several key decisions including setting up of a high-levelcommittee (HLC) to implement Clause 6 of Assam Accord to hold discussions with all stakeholders on the quantum of reservation of seats in Assam Legislative Assembly and local bodies for Assamese people among other decisions.
Measures envisaged in the Memorandum of Settlement, 2003 and other issues related to Bodocommunity also approved.
About Clause 6 of Assam Accord:
After Assam agitation of 1979-1985, Assam Accord was signed on 15th August, 1985.
It envisaged that appropriate constitutional, legislative and administrative safeguards, shall be provided to protect, preserve and promote the cultural, social, linguistic identity and heritage of the Assamese people.

Aadhaar amendment bill introduced in Lok Sabha
The Aadhaar and Other Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2018 that amends the Aadhaar Act 2016 was introduced in the Lok Sabha amid opposition by the Congress and the Trinamool Congress (TMC).
The Amendments are being done keeping the Supreme Court verdict in mind and rejected the Opposition's concern over privacy.
About Aadhar Amendment Bill:
The Bill seeks to amend three separate laws governing Aadhaar, telecom sector, and banking regulation
The bill to amend the Aadhaar (Targeted Delivery of Financial and Other Subsidies, Benefits and Services) Act, 2016, the Indian Telegraph Act, 1885 and the Prevention of Money-laundering Act, 2002 is crucial.
The government is trying to create the ground for allowing Aadhaar usage by private entities despite a Supreme Court ruling in September that Aadhaar can only be used for welfare schemes and for delivering state subsidies.
It had barred private companies from using Aadhaar data for authenticating customers.

The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has given the following set of approvals.
The important Cabinet Approvals are given as follows:

Apprised of MoU between India and Morocco on Cooperation in the area of Cyber Security.
First-ever three-way merger in Indian Banking with amalgamation of Vijaya, Dena and Bank of Baroda.
Ex post facto approval to India’s Approach for COP 24, Katowice, Poland (2-15 December 2018).
'The Constitution (Scheduled Tribes) Order (Amendment) Bill, 2018' for revision in list of Scheduled Tribes of Arunachal Pradesh.
Allows inclusion of merchant exporters under Interest Equalisation Scheme (1ES) for Pre and Post Shipment Rupee Export Credit.

January 4

Parliament Passes Right Of Children To Free And Compulsory Education (Amendment) Bill, 2018
The Indian Parliament passed the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (Amendment) Bill, 2018 that seeks to do away with the no-detention policy in schools. The legislation is significant as it brings accountability in the elementary education system.
The Bill seeks to amend the Right to Education (RTE) Act to abolish the “no-detention” policy in schools.
Under the current provisions of the Act, no student can be detained up to class VIII.

Rajya Sabha Passes National Council for Teacher Education (Amendment) Bill
The Indian Parliament passed the National Council for Teacher Education (Amendment) Bill, 2018, following the approval of the Rajya Sabha.
The Lok Sabha had already passed the Bill. The Bill seeks to amend the National Council for Teacher Education (NCTE) Act, 1993.
The bill aims to grant retrospective recognition to Central and State institutions which had conducted teachereducation courses without approval by the Council.

The Supreme Court lifted a stay on the proceedings of a class-action suit filed by the central government against the maker of Maggi noodles in the apex consumer court.
The National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (NCDRC) can now continue proceedings against Nestle India, based on the results of tests of Maggi noodle samples conducted by the Central Food Technological Research Institute (CFTRI) in Mysuru
In December 2015, the top court had stayed NCDRC proceedings against Nestle India and directed the testing of the noodles by CFTRI.
In April next year, Nestle cleared all tests and Maggi was declared safe for consumption.
Maggi was banned by FSSAI on 5 June 2015 for five months for allegedly containing lead beyond permissible limits, forcing Nestle India to withdraw the product from the market.

January 5

Government Launched 100% Digital Swachh Survekshan 2019
Union Housing and Urban Affairs Minister, Hardeep Singh Puri, launched the 'Swachh Survekshan 2019', the fourth edition of the annual nationwide cleanliness survey of urban India in New Delhi.
The Swachh Survekshan 2019 aims to evaluate the achievements in the cleanliness level in urban areas of the country. It is launched as a part of ‘Swachh Bharat Abhiyan’.
SwachhSurvekshan 2019, completely digital and paperless survey, will be completed in a record time of 28 days.

PM inaugurated Integrated Check Post at Moreh, other infrastructure projects at Imphal
He also inaugurated the Dolaithabi Barrage Project, the FCI Food StorageGodown at Sawombung, and projects related to water supply and tourism.
He dedicated to the nation the 400 kVDouble Circuit Silchar-Imphal Line.
He also laid the foundation stone for sports projects.
About Manipur:
Chief Minister: Shri. N Biren Singh

January 6

4677 PMBJP Kendras functional in 35 States/ UTs of the country by end of year 2018: MoS Road Ministry.
The 4677 'Pradhan Mantri Bhartiya Jan Aushadhi Pariyojana' (PMBJP) Kendras became functional in 35 States/UTs of the country.
Also unbranded generic medicines worth Rs. 417 crores (MRP) have been sold through PMBJP Kendras till December 2018.
The medicines are procured only from WHO-GMP certified manufacturers,
Thus, PMBJP has saved approximately Rs. 1668 crores to the citizens of country.
Minister of State for Road Transport and Highways, Shipping and Chemicals and Fertilizers: Shri Mansukh L. Mandaviya

January 7

Cabinet approves MoC between India, Japan in the field of environmental cooperation
The MoC will enable establishment and promotion of closer and long-term cooperation between India and Japan in the field of environment protection and management of natural resources on the basis of equity, reciprocity and mutual benefits, taking into account the applicable laws and legal provisions in each country.
Further, the MoC entails exchange of information and technology between the two countries.
It is expected to bring in the latest technologies and best practices suited for bringing about better environmental protection, better conservation, better management of climate change and biodiversity conservation.

Cabinet approves MoU between India, US on scientific and technical cooperation in earth sciences
The collaboration between the two countries will enable sharing of the expertise available with organisations in both countries and adoption of the latest state-of-the-art technology in the field of Earth Science.
The specific areas of cooperation include ecosystems, climate variability and land-use changes, energy, minerals, environmental health, natural hazards, risk and resilience of assessments, water resources, and informatics and data integration.

Cabinet approves revised model MoU between India and foreign Financial Intelligence Units (FIUs) for exchange of information
The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister NarendraModi has given its approval to the revised Model Memorandum of Understanding between the Financial Intelligence Unit(FIU) – India with its counterpart foreign Financial Intelligence Units (FIUs) for exchange of information.
The core functions of FIU-IND in relation to foreign FIUs include screening and processing requests from foreign Financial Intelligence Units (FIUs), disseminating information to foreign FIUs, establishing and maintaining relationship with foreign FIUs and facilitating, administering and negotiating MoUs with foreign FIUs.

Cabinet approves MoU between India, France in the field of energy efficiency, energy conservation

The MoU is a science and technology agreement, which involves knowledge exchange and cooperation in the nature of technical assistance only.
The MoU is expected to take forward information exchange on policies, programmes and technologies relating to enhanced energy efficiency and demand-side management.
The MoU will lead to awareness creation on energy efficiency. The development of tools for collection, use and analysis of CO2 emissions and GHG data for tracking global emissions for INDC.
It will promote Research and Development, and demonstration of energy efficient technologies.

Cabinet approves Amendment of the JallianwalaBagh National Memorial Act, 1951
The decisions aims to suitably amend the Jallianwala Bagh National Memorial Act, 1951 so as to secure representation as trustees, “the leader of opposition recognised as such in the house of the people, or where there is no such leader of opposition, then the leader of the single largest opposition party in the house”.
In the existing act, there is a provision for representation of a single national political party. The deletion of the party-specific member from the trust will make it apolitical.
The proposed amendment ensures representation of the opposition party in the trust.
It will empower the government to terminate and replace a trustee to participate in the functioning of the trust or for any other reason.

Cabinet approves MoC between India, Japan for Cooperation in the postal field
The MoC seeks to improve postal services and cooperation in the postal field between the two countries.
Both the countries would
Sharing information and exchanging views based on both sides’ experiences regarding the postal policy.
Promoting discussions to build a cooperative relationship.
Setting up of Postal Services Dialogue for carrying forward cooperation in specific areas mutually decided by Both Sides.

Cabinet approves MoU between India, Tajikistan on cooperation on peaceful uses of space technology for development
This MoU shall enable pursuing the following potential interest areas of cooperation such as remote sensing of the earth, satellite communication and satellite-based navigation space science and planetary exploration; use of spacecraft and space systems and ground system and application of space technology.
The MoU would lead to the development of joint activity in the field of application of space technologies for the benefit of humanity.

Cabinet approves MoU between India, Russia on Joint Activities under human spaceflight programme
This will strengthen the cooperation between India and Russia and would provide impetus to develop the technologies and advanced systems required for the human spaceflight programme like radiation shielding, life support systems, crew module, rendezvous and docking systems, space suit and training for astronauts.
The MoU would lead to the development of a joint activity in the field of application of space technologies for the benefit of humanity.

Cabinet approves agreement between India, Uzbekistan on Cooperation in exploration and uses of outer space
The Union Cabinet has been apprised of agreement between India and Uzbekistan on cooperation in the exploration and uses of outer space for peaceful purposes.
The agreement would lead to develop a joint activity in the field of application of space technologies for the benefit of humanity.
It will lead to setting up of a Joint Working Group, which will further work out the plan of action including the time-frame and the means of implementing the provisions of this Agreement.

Cabinet approves MoU between India, Zimbabwe for cooperation in the field of geology, mining and mineral resources
The provisions of the MoU will enable taking up of activities like documentation, dissemination and would serve the objective of innovation.
The MoU will provide an institutional mechanism between India and Zimbabwe for cooperation in the identified fields.

Cabinet approves MoU between India, Morocco for cooperation in the peaceful uses of outer space
This MoU shall enable the following potential interest areas of cooperation such as space science, technology and applications including remote sensing of the earth, satellite communication and satellite-based navigation, space science and planetary exploration, use of spacecraft and space systems and ground system and application of space technology.
Morocco had expressed interest in cooperation with India in the field of space in the early 1990s.

Cabinet approves Agreement between India, Algeria on Cooperation in the field of Space Sciences, Technologies and Applications
This agreement shall enable pursuing the following potential interest areas of cooperation such as, space science, technology and applications including remote sensing of the earth, satellite communication and satellite-based navigation, space science and planetary exploration, use of spacecraft and space systems and ground system and application of space technology.
The signing of the Agreement will strengthen the cooperation between India and Algeria and provide impetus to explore newer research activities and application possibilities in the field of remote sensing of the earth, satellite navigation, space science and exploration of outer space.

Cabinet approves MoU between India, Armenia on joint issue of postage stamp
As per the MoU, Department of Posts, Ministry of Communications and the National Postal Operator of Armenia (“HayPost” CJSC) mutually agreed to jointly issue Postage Stamps on India-Armenia: Joint Issue on the theme “Dence”.
The Joint stamps were released in August, 2018.
The Commemorative Postage Stamps depict “Manipuri Dance” of India and “HovArek Dance” of Armenia.

Cabinet approves MoC between India, Japan in the field of Healthcare and Wellness
The MoC covers the following areas of cooperation:
Promoting specific projects such as developing human resource in the field of acute medicine, surgery and trauma care including focus on new areas of competency in each field and establishing an advanced joint testing laboratory for clinical examination.
Development of infrastructure such as establishing a centralised management healthcare distribution centre and improving the sanitary environment by increasing access to hygienic and affordable toilets.
Human development such as developing human resource, research and project promotion for health self-management such as ME-BYO and Ayurveda and holding an India-Japan public and private healthcare forum.
A Joint Committee as a high-level consultative mechanism will be set up to further elaborate the details of cooperation and to oversee the implementation of this MoC.

Cabinet approves implementation of Shahpurkandi Dam (National Project) on river Ravi in Punjab
For the same, central assistance worth Rs 485.38 crore (for irrigation component) would be provided for over five years from 2018-19 to 2022-23.
The implementation of this project would help minimising some of the water of the River Ravi which at present is going waste through the Madhopur Headworks downstream to Pakistan.
The funding for Central Assistance to Shahpurkandi Dam project shall be made through NABARD under the existing system for funding of 99 PMKSY-AIBP projects under LTIF.

CCEA approves strategic sale of Government’s existing 52.63% of total paid-up equity shareholding in REC to Power Finance Corporation
The acquisition intends to achieve integration across the Power Chain, obtain better synergies, create economies of scale and have enhanced capability to support energy access and energy efficiency by the improved capability to finance the power sector.
It may also allow for cheaper fundraising with an increase in bargaining power for the combined entity.
Both REC and PFC are Central Public Sector Enterprises under the Ministry of Power.

January 8

In A Historic Move, Private FM Channels Permitted to Carry All India Radio News
Union Minister of State (IC) for Information & Broadcasting and Youth Affairs & Sports, Col. RajyavardhanRathore (Retd.) launched the sharing of All India Radio News with private FM broadcasters.
This will be done free of cost, on trial basis initially till 31st May, 2019.
Any Private FM broadcaster which intends to broadcast the news bulletins will first have to register with News Services Division: All India Radio
Chairman of PrasarBharati is A. Surya Prakash.
CEO of PrasarBharatiis ShashiShekharVempati.

Lok Sabha passes Personal Laws (Amendment) Bill; proposed legislation removes leprosy as ground for divorce.
The bill seeks to remove leprosy as a ground for divorce in five personal laws - Hindu Marriage Act, Dissolution of Muslim Marriages Act, Divorce Act (for Christians), Special Marriage Act and the Hindu Adoptions and Maintenance Act.
The bill was passed by a voice vote.
The Bill was introduced in LokSabha in August 2018.
India is a signatory to a UN Resolution which calls for elimination of discrimination against persons suffering from leprosy

Cabinet approved 10 pc quota for economically weaker sections in general category
For the implementation of the quota, Articles 15 and 16 of the Constitution will have to be amended.
This would be availed by those whose annual income is below Rs 8 lakh and have up to five acres of land.
The quota will be over and above the existing 50 per cent reservation.
Articles 15, 16 falls under the category of Fundamental Rights in the Part III of the Indian Constitution.
Article 15 states that the State shall not discriminate against any citizen on grounds only of religion, race, caste, sex, place of birth or any of them.
Article 16 guarantees the Equality of opportunity in matters of public employment with no discrimination being done on basis of religion, race, caste, sex, place of birth.

January 9

Citizenship Amendment Bill 2019 Passed in Lok Sabha
The Citizenship Amendment bill seeking to provide Indian citizenship to persecuted minorities from Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Afghanistan was passed by Lok Sabha.
The Bill provides for Indian citizenship to such immigrants after six years of residence in India instead of 12 years currently.
Home Minister Rajnath Singh moved the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2019 in Lok Sabha and was passed after a discussion.
The Bill seeks to amend the Citizenship Act of 1955 in order to grant citizenship to Hindus, Buddhists, Sikhs, Jains, Parsis and Christians from Bangladesh, Afghanistan and Pakistan if they have lived in India for six years.

Interim Budget To Be Presented on 1 February
The interim budget for 2019 will be presented on 1 February during the budget session of the parliament. The budget session of the Parliament to be held from 31 January to 13 February.
The decision was taken in the meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Parliamentary Affairs.

January 11

Cabinet approves MoU on Maritime issues between India and Denmark
The MoU is proposed to be signed during the upcoming visit of the VVIP from Denmark to India in January 2019.
The signing of the agreement will pave the way for both the countries to explore areas of bilateral collaboration, facilitate cross-border cooperation and investments between their maritime sectors.

Union Cabinet approves establishment of three new All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS).
Among them, while two will be set up in Jammu and Kashmir's Samba and Pulwama districts, the third AIIMS will be set up in Rajkot, Gujarat.
These institutes will be set up under Pradhan Mantri Swasthya Suraksha Yojana (PMSSY).
The establishment of the new institutes involve the creation of hospital, teaching block for medical and nursing courses, residential complex and allied facilities and services, broadly on the pattern of AIIMS, New Delhi and other six new AIIMS taken up under Phase-I of PMSSY.
The objective is to establish the new AIIMS as Institutions of National Importance for providing quality tertiary healthcare, medical education, nursing education and research in the region.

Cabinet approves MoU between India, Japan on development of Advanced Model Single Window
The ‘Advanced Model Single Window’ is based on the best practices in and outside India, with measurable parameters and it identifies possible obstacles for the establishment of the Single Window in India. It will thus, facilitate investments.

Cabinet approves MoU between India, France on technical bilateral cooperation in the field of new and renewable energy
The technical cooperation will cover joint research working groups, pilot projects, capacity building programs, study tour, case studies and the sharing of experience and expertise.
The MoU will help in strengthening bilateral cooperation between India and France.

Cabinet approves signing of TOR to provide tax assistance to Swaziland
The Terms of Reference will formalise the conditions of the engagement of the designated Indian Expert to provide tax assistance to Eswatini under the TIWB Programme.
The engagement of the Indian Expert under the TIWB programmewill give impetus to India's support in capacity building in tax matters in developing countries.
The TIWB programme, which was jointly launched by UNDP and OECD, is intended to support developing countries to strengthen national tax administrations through building audit capacity and to share this knowledge with other countries.

Cabinet approves bilateral swap arrangement between India, Japan
The Union Cabinet has approved the proposal for entering into an Agreement for Bilateral Swap Arrangement (BSA) between India and Japan and authorising the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to sign the BSA with the Bank of Japan for a maximum amount of USD 75 billion.
The BSA is a very good example of mutual cooperation between India and Japan for strategic objective of assisting each other in times of difficulty and for restoring international confidence.

Centre launches 5-year Plan To Combat Pollution In 102 cities
The Environment Ministry launched the National Clean Air Programme (NCAP) aimed at reducing toxic particulate matter in 102 Indian cities by 2024.
The NCAP will be a mid-term, 5-year plan with 2019 as the first year, while 2017 will be the base year for comparison of concentration. An amount of INR300 crore has been sanctioned for this purpose.

January 12

6 States Sign Agreement For Renukaji Multipurpose Dam Project
An agreement for Renukaji Dam Multipurpose Project was signed in New Delhi among the States of Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Delhi, Rajasthan and Uttarakhand in the presence of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation Minister Nitin Gadkari. All the six Chief Ministers were present on the occasion.
Under the agreement, three storage projects are proposed to be constructed on the river Yamuna and two of its tributaries – Tons and Giri in the hilly regions of Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh.

January 13

GSPM releases Commemorative Coin of Rs. 350 to mark birth anniversary of Guru Gobind Singh jee
Prime Minister Narendra Modi released a commemorative coin of Rs. 350 in the national capital to mark the birth anniversary celebrations of Guru Gobind Singh jee.
He lauded the lofty ideals and values of the Guru Gobind Singh jee – the selfless service to humanity, devotion, heroism and sacrifice and urged the people to follow his path.
The Prime Minister earlier urged the people of the country to follow the path of devotion and sacrifice for the nation along the lines of Guru Gobind Singh jee in his monthly radio program, Mann Ki Baat.

January 14

India to construct 44 'strategically important' roads along China border.
In 2017, Indian and Chinese troops engaged in a face-off at the Doklam tri-junction after the China began building a road in the area
These 44 strategic roads will be constructed at a cost of nearly Rs. 21,000 crore.
The 4000-km-long Line of Actual Control between India and China touches areas from J&K to Arunachal.

January 15

Minister NirmalaSitharaman’s 2-day visit to Andaman Nicobar Command (ANC)
The Defence Minister witnessed a joint military drill involving the Army, the Air Force, the Navy and the Coast Guard off Campbell Bay in the Great Nicobar Island.
She also inaugurated the second phase of Married Accommodation Project (MAP) consisting of 868 dwelling units for troops of ANC at Brichgunj Military Station.
The archipelago is straddled strategically near the mouth of the Malacca Straits which is an important Sea Lane of Communication used by the navies of several countries.
Andaman & Nicobar Islands Lieutenant Governor: Admiral D.K. Joshi.
National Parks: Mahatma Gandhi Marine National Park, Mount Harriet National Park, Rani Jhansi Marine National Park, Campbell Bay National Park, Galathea National Park.

January 16

Government allocated additional Rs. 6084 crore for MGNREGA
The government has made an additional allocation of over Rs. 6,000 crore to rural employment scheme MGNREGA, taking the total allocation to Rs. 61,084 crores, which is highest ever in a financial year
The additional allocation cameafterwritten concern of 90 lawmakers, several prominent civil society members, activists, leaders of farmers' movements and former bureaucrats to Prime minister over fund crunch.
About MGNREGA:
Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) is Indian legislation enacted on August 25 2005.
It aims to enhance livelihood security in rural areas by providing at least 100 days of wage employment in a financial year to every household whose adult members volunteer to do unskilled manual work.

PM NarendraModi unveils slew of projects worth over Rs. 1,550 crore in Odisha
Prime Minister ShriNarendraModi launched a slew of Central government projects worth over Rs. 1,550 crore in Balangir district of Odisha for accelerating the state’s development.
The prime minister dedicated to the nation the electrification of Jharsuguda-Vizianagaram and Sambalpur-Angul railway lines spanning 813 km and completed at a cost of Rs. 1,085 crore.
He also inaugurated the doubling of 14.2 km Barpali-Dungaripali and 17.3 km Balangir-Deogaon rail lines, completed at a cost of Rs. 189.3 crore.
Besides a Multi-Modal Logistics Park (MMLP), spread over 28.3 acres and built at a cost of Rs. 100 crore at Jharsuguda was also dedicated to the nation.
A new train on Balangir-Bichhupali route was also flagged off by PM Modi.

January 17

PM inaugurated spiritual circuit development project in Kerala
Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the project ''Development of Spiritual Circuit: Sree Padmanabha Swamy Temple – Aranmula-Sabarimala'' at the cost of Rs. 92.22 crores under Swadesh Darshan Scheme of Tourism Ministry in Kerala.
The SreePadmanaaswamy Temple is one of the 108 Divyadesams of Lord Vishnu and majority of the work under this project has been carried out at this temple.
Under the Project, the ministry of tourism has developed and rejuvenated the temple along with its surroundings keeping in mind the factors of heritage and socio-cultural aspects.
Ministry of tourism has sanctioned 7 projects in Kerala under the SwadeshDarshan and PRASHAD schemes for an approximate amount of Rs. 550 crores.

January 18

Cabinet Approves Recapitalization of Export-Import Bank of India
Issuance of Recapitalization Bonds by Government of India to the tune of Rs. 6,000 crore for capital infusion in Export Import Bank of India (EXIM Bank)
The equity will be infused in two tranches of Rs. 4,500 crore in FY 2018-19 and Rs.1,500 crore in FY 2019-20 respectively.
The Cabinet also approved an increase in the authorized capital of Exim Bank from Rs. 10,000 crore to Rs. 20,000 crore. The recapitalization bonds will be on the lines issued to Public Sector Banks.
About Exim Bank:
Established: 1982
Head Quarters: Mumbai
MD & CEO: David Rasquinha.

Cabinet approves expenditure sanction for Integrated E-filing and Centralized Processing Centre 2.0 Project
The Union Cabinet, chaired by the Prime Minister ShriNarendraModi, has given its approval to expenditure sanction of Rs. 4,241.97 crore for Integrated E-filing & Centralized Processing Center 2.0 Project of the Income Tax Department.
Indian multinational corporation and a global leader in technology services & consulting, Infosys has been selected to implement the project.
Aim of this Project: To cut down the processing time for Income Tax Returns from 63 days to one day.

January 19

Centre to move ITBP command to Leh in Jammu and Kashmir
The Centre has ordered moving a strategic Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) command from its current base in Chandigarh to the border of Leh in Jammu and Kashmir, despite the growing concerns over the Chinese military build-up along the eastern flank of the country.
The North West (NW) frontier of the ITBP has been ordered to move by the end of March.
The Leh district in the mountains of Jammu and Kashmir is the base for 14 Corps of the Army and the proposed shift will allow better interaction between the two forces for strategic and defence planning.

PM Narendra Modi launches National Museum of Indian Cinema in Mumbai
The development of the Museum was guided by the Museum Advisory Committee headed by Shyam Benegal.
An innovation Committee headed by Prasoon Joshi provided an upgrade to the NMIC.
Built at a cost of Rs. 140.61 crore, the museum depicts the journey of over a century of Indian cinema in a story telling mode with the help of visuals, graphics, artifacts, interactive exhibits and multimedia expositions.
The Museum is housed in two buildings – the New Museum Building and the 19th century historic palace GulshanMahal – in the Films Division campus in Mumbai.
The GulshanMahal is an ASI Grade-II Heritage Structure which has been restored as part of the NMIC project.
It is divided into 9 sections, namely, The Origin of Cinema, Cinema comes to India, Indian Silent Film, Advent of Sound, The Studio Era, The impact of World War II, Creative Resonance, New Wave and Beyond and Regional Cinema.

January 20

Union Home Minister approves Task Force report on Space Technology in Border Management
Rajnath Singh, the Union Home Minister has approved the report of Task Force created by Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) to identify areas for use of Space Technology in improving Border Management.
The task force was headed by the Joint Secretary Border Management (BM) and included members from BSF, Department of Space and BM Division, MHA.
The task force consulted all stakeholders including Border Guarding Forces (BGFs), ISRO, National Security Council Secretariat (NSCS) and Ministry of Defence (MoD) to finalise the report.

IIT-H Launches Full-Fledged B.Tech In Artificial Intelligence
Indian Institute of Technology-Hyderabad (IIT-H) has announced the launch of a full-fledged bachelor's programme in Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology from the new academic session, a first for the country and only the third globally.
Besides IIT, Carnegie Mellon University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), both of which are in the US, offer full-fledged B.Techprogrammes in AI.
The new course will have 20 seats and the eligibility is clearing the JEE-Advanced test.
The course will also focus on application verticals such as healthcare, agriculture, smart mobility, among many others.

January 21

PM Modi lays foundation stone of first ever Medical College in Silvassa
Prime Minister Modivisted and laid foundation stone for the first ever medical college at a cost of 189 crore and spread over 18 acres land in Saylivillage, Silvassa in Dadra & Nagar Haveli
He also laid foundation stone for several development projects worth Rs. 1400 crores at Silvassa in Dadra & Nagar Haveli.
These projects are linked to various aspects of connectivity, infrastructure health, education etc.
An 11.4 kilometer long Ring road at Silvassa, a three phase Daman Ganga river front, and a sewage treatment plant were also announced by Prime Minister, NarendraModi.

January 23

Nitin Gadkari inaugurated first inter-state bridge over Ravi River in J&K
Nitin Gadkari inaugurated first inter-state 1210-meter span-bridge over Ravi River in KeerianGandial in Kathuadistrict, jammu and kashmir.
Nitin Gadkari to inaugurate first inter-state bridge in J&K
It was built at a cost of Rs. 158.84 crore in a span of three and a half years linking areas of Katthua district with Punjab.
The bridge also called as Keediyan-Gandiyal bridge will benefit over 2,20,000 people living on the two sides – Kathua in Jammu, and Pathankot in Punjab. It will reduce the distance between the two cities from 45 kms to 8.6 kms.

The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has given the following set of approvals.
MoC between India and Japan in the field of Food Processing Industry.
Extension of Delhi Metro corridor from Dilshad Garden to New Bus Adda Ghaziabad
MoU between India and Kuwait for cooperation on the Recruitment of Domestic Workers
Amendment to the ‘Framework on Currency Swap Arrangement for SAARC Member Countries’ to incorporate ‘Standby Swap’ amounting to USD 400 million operated within the overall size of the facility.
Creation of the National Bench of the Goods and Services Tax Appellate Tribunal (GSTAT).

January 24

PM Narendra Modi launches Pravasi Teerth Darshan Yojana.
Under this a group of Indian diaspora will be taken on a government-sponsored tour of religious places in India twice a year.
The first batch of40 Indian-origin people are at the PravasiBharatiya Divas and from here they will begin their tour.
They will be taken to religious places of all major religions in India and the government will bear all the expenses including the airfare from their country of residence.
All people of Indian-origin aged 45 to 65 can apply and a group will be selected out of them with first preference given to people from 'Girmitiya countries' such as Mauritius, Fiji, Suriname, Guyana, Trinidad and Tobago, and Jamaica. Prime Minister Modi, during his visit here, also inauguated Centers of Excellence at DeenDayal Hastkala Sanku.

January 25

Central Government launched four new schemes to promote young scientists and researchers in India. All the schemes focus on empowering, recognizing and motivating youth.
Teacher Associateship for Research Excellence (TARE) Scheme:
To connect the educators to leading public funded institutions like Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Indian Institute of Science (IISc) or national institutions like Council of Scientific & Industrial Research (CSIR) to pursue research.
Under this scheme, educators will be paid Rs 5 lakh yearly, and a monthly out- of-pocket expense of Rs 5000.
Overseas Visiting Doctoral Fellowship:
support will be offered to 100 PhD scholars for training at foreign universities/laboratories up to 12 months during their doctoral research.
Such scholars will be given a monthly fellowship equivalent to USD 2000 and a one-time contingency allowance of Rs 60000 to cover travel and visa fee.
Distinguished Investigator Award:
100 fellowships will be offered to principal investigators of Science and Engineering Research Board/ Department of Science and Technology projects.
100 researchers selected under this scheme will be given a monthly fellowship of Rs 15000 for three years and an optional research grant, based on peer review of the project proposal submitted by them.
Augmenting Writing Skills for Articulating Research (AWSAR):
This scheme aims to encourage science writing.
Under this scheme, 20000 PhD scholars in science will be roped in to popularize and communicate their research outcome.

January 26

Dharmendra Pradhan launches new reforms to strengthen Jan Shikshan Santhans
Dharmendra Pradhan, Minister of skill development implemented new reforms for Jan Shikshan Sansthan (JSS) to enhance skill ecosystem and entrepreneurship in most of the remotest areas of India under centre’s flagship programme Skill India.
Aligning of JSS program and curriculum to Nationwide Talent Qualification Framework (NSQF) to enhance teaching.
Decentralisation of powers for JSSs by supplying additional accountability and independence to district administration
This is to identify and endorse common skills in the district, evidence based evaluation procedure and straightforward online certification
Linking JSS to Community Finance Administration program (PFMS) to manage transparency and accountability of the ecosystem
School for trainers to enhance their capacity through Countrywide Capabilities Coaching Institutes (NSTIs).
About Jan Shikshan Santhans:
Previously known as ShramikVidyapeeth was renamed as Jan ShikshanSanthans in April,2000.
It is successful in providing skill development programmes to every remote areas of the country for past 50 years.

Centre to renovate, develop around 400 abandoned airstrips across country
The Centre decided to renovate and develop around 400 abandoned airstrips across the country to strengthen air-connectivity,and Jharkhand is the first state to develop airstrip in Dhalbhumgarh .
Airports Authority of India prepared a Memorandum of Understanding with a motive to renovate air strips and asked for support from all the 29 states and seven Union Territories.
Modern airport at Dhalbhumgarh is to be renovated with the initial amount of 100cr and would be completed in 18 months.
About Jharkhand:
Capital: Ranchi
Chief Minister: Raghubar Das

January 27

Ministry of India launches RDP India 2019
As a new initiative in sync with the Digital India campaign of the Government, Ministry of Defence had launched a mobile app 'RDP India 2019' on the Republic Day, with the intent of making available the highlights of the Republic Day event, not only to the spectators at Rajpath, but also to the general public all over the world.
This app contains information about the Parade on Rajpath, New Delhi, including Order of the March, details of the tableaux presented by different States and Ministries, children cultural performances, fly past and names of recipients of Pradhan Mantri Rashtriya Bal Puraskar 2019.

PM Modi lays foundation stone for AIIMS in Tamil Nadu
AIIMS in Madurai will be constructed at a cost of more than Rs. 1200 crores. It will benefit all the people of Tamil Nadu.
He also inaugurated the super speciality blocks of Madurai’s Rajaji medical college and Tanjavur and Tirunelveli medical colleges through vedio conferencing.
He dedicated a dozen post office passport sevakendras to the nation
Kerala, PM Modi visited the Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited in Kochi. He will also visit the Indian Oil Corporation Limited. He will lay the foundation stone for skill development institute at Ettumanoor
Union minister NitinGadkari inaugurates Atul Setu in Goa
Union minister Nitin Gadkari has inaugurated four lane Atulsetu (592 mt)over river
This is the third bridge over Mandoriver.
Goa capital: Panaji, CM: Manoharparikar

India, Vietnam Release First-Ever Commemorative Stamps
India and Vietnam released first ever set of commemorative postage stamps to mark the long-term friendly bilateral relationships between the two countries.
The stamp was released by AN Nanda, Secretary, Department of Posts. The two set of stamps released carry picture of Sanchi Stupa and Thien Mu Pagoda.

January 28

Train 18 named as Vande Bharat Express
Train 18, the all-new engine-less train of the Indian Railways is likely to be flagged off the next week. Train 18, named Vande Bharat Express, is a self-propelled train and is set to make its maiden trip from Delhi to Varanasi. Reportssuggest that the train is going to cost more than that of Shatabdi Express trains’ Executive and Chair Class fares. 
The train was built by integral coach factory located in Chennai.

India, Seychelles sign revised agreement over military infrastructure
India and Seychelles signed a revised agreement that will allow India to build military infrastructure on Seychelles’ Assumption Island.
This agreement was signed in 2015 during the visit of Prime Minister NarendraModi.
The agreement that was signed on January 27, 2018 is the re-negotiated version of the 2015 agreement.
Joint efforts in anti-piracy operations and enhanced Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) surveillance has been covered in the re-negotiated agreement.
Overall, the military infrastructure on Seychelles’s Assumption Island will expand India’s strategic reach in Indian Ocean region.

SC reconstitute 5 member committee to hear Ayodhya land dispute
A new five-judge Constitution Bench was constituted to hear upon the politically sensitive Ram Janambhoomi-Babri Masjid land title dispute in Ayodhya.
The bench was reformed because Justice U.U. Lalit, who was a member of the original bench, had recused himself on January 10 from this case.
The new committee members are Chief Justice of India RanjanGogoi and Justices S.A. Bobde, D.Y. Chandrachud, Ashok Bhushan and S.A. Nazeer. Justices Bhushan and Nazeer are the new members in the bench.

January 29

India’s 1st Geographical Indication store opened in Goa.
Union Civil Aviation minister Suresh Prabhu inaugurated India's 1st Geographical Indication store at Goa International Airport in Dabolim.
The GI store has been set up by the Cashew Export Promotion Council of India for (CEPCI) for promoting GI products in India.
Goa CM : Manohar Parriikar Governor : Mridula Sinha

Western Railways to provide segways to RPF personnel
Th e Western Railway has provided segways, the two-wheeled, self-balancing and battery-powered electric vehicles, to the Railway Protection Force (RPF) personnel deployed at major railway stations in Mumba
Western Railway HQ: Mumbai
General Manager: Anil kumar Gupta

January 30

K.J. Alphons inaugurates 1st Swadsesh Darshan project in Sikkim
K.J. Alphons inaugurated it at Zero point, Gangtok,Sikkim
Swadesh Darshan scheme is one of the flagships of Ministry of Tourism for the development of thematic circuits in the country.
Sikkim CM: Pawan Kumar Chamling Governor: Ganga Prasad

ICAR launches NAHEP
Indian council of Agricultural Research has launched the National Agriculture Higher Education Project (NAHEP) to attract talent and strengthen higher agricultural education in the country.
It is inaugurated at the fourth Convention of 2-day “Agrivision-2019” organized by Vidyarthi Kalyan Nyas in Pusa, New Delhi.
This project (Rs 1100 crore) is to be funded by the World Bank and the Indian Government on a 50:50 basis.
To enhance the participation of students in agricultural business, READY (Rural Entrepreneurship Awareness Development Yojana) is also provided to the students.

January 31

International stock taking conference on Tiger conservation
The 3rd Stock Taking Conference on Tiger Conservation was inaugurated in New Delhi.
The conference is being hosted by the National Tiger Conservation Authority, Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change in close collaboration with the Global Tiger Forum which is an International, Intergovernmental Organization for conserving tigers in the world.
Dr.HarshVardhan is the Union Minister for Environment, Forest and Climate Change and is also the Chairman of the National Tiger Conservation Authority.
World Tiger day: July 29

India signs agreement with OECD for participation in PISA 2021
The ministry of Human Resources and Development, Government of India PrakashJavedkar signed an agreement with Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development for Participation in International Students Association (PISA).
This will lead to improvement in learning levels of children and enhance quality of education in the country.
About OECD Secretary General: Jose Angel Gurria, HQ: Paris, France


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