SEMINARS - MEETINGS - 2017 MARCH

March 1

Officials from India and Oman met on enhancing defence ties.
India and Oman explored ways to enhance cooperation between their navies during talks Navy Chief Admiral Sunil Lanba had with top defence brass of the strategically important Gulf nation.
Lanba, who arrived in Oman on the second leg of his two-nation tour, called on Oman's Defence Minister Bader al Busaidi and held extensive discussions with Commander of Royal Navy of Oman, Rear Admiral Abdullah bin Khamis Al Raisi.
The two sides deliberated on ramping up cooperation between their navies in the backdrop of the fast evolving security scenario in the region.
The Chief of Navy Staff also held talks with Chief of Royal Air Force of Oman Mattar Al Obaidani on issues of strategic interests to both the countries.
Lanba, during his two-day trip to the country, is also scheduled to visit the Sultan Qaboos Naval Academy and the Bin Naval Base.
On the first leg of his trip, Lanba visited UAE where he met top echelons of the country's defence establishment and discussed ways to bolster strategic partnership between the two countries.

2 Day Nepal Investment Summit 2017 starts in Kathmandu.
The Nepal Investment Summit 2017 has kicked off in the Capital with Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal lighting the traditional 'panas' in the inauguration ceremony.
Addressing the inaugural of the two-day event, PM Dahal stated that peace and development were interconnected, adding that the government was focused on creating conducive investment opportunities.
PM Dahal stated that the government was ready to shift its attention from the political instability to economic development.
Likewise, welcoming the guests, Minister for Industry Nabindra Raj Joshi highlighted that Nepal was the most favorable place for the foreign investors as it would allow greater freedom to the investors in comparison to any other country in the South Asian nations.
Stating that the Summit was only a beginning, Minister Joshi expressed his vision that in the next 10 years, no Nepali would have to fly abroad for job opportunities.
He also encouraged the participants to visit various natural and historic places of Nepal and enjoy its serenity rather than being confined in their hotel rooms.
The two-day summit is being organised by the Ministry of Industry with the objective of inviting foreign investment in nine key sectors that form the backbone of the country's development.

13th Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO) Summit Held in Pakistan.
The 2017 ECO summit is the 13th summit of the Economic Cooperation Organisation, held on the 1st of March 2017 in Islamabad, Pakistan.
Pakistan's Ministry of Interior drafted a comprehensive security plan for the summit. Under the plan, local holiday was declared in the Islamabad-Rawalpindi metropolitan area while, educational institutions and offices were to be closed.
Kashmir Highway will also be partially closed during the summit. The army was given responsibility for the security of the Red Zone within the city.
Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan chaired a meeting in which it was decided that there will be two VIP routes for the guests and a bomb disposal squad would clear the route for them from airport to red zone.
Rangers personnel would also look after the security situation in the area. The Kashmir highway would be closed for general public till night of for security reasons.
Foreign Minister of Afghanistan, presidents of Azerbaijan, Iran, Tajikistan, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Prime Ministers Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan, and Deputy Prime Minister of Uzbekistan will represent their countries at the ECO summit.

March 2

Discussion on bilateral ties held between Foreign Sec S. Jaishankar and US NSA.
Foreign Secretary S. Jaishankar met US National Security Advisor Lt Gen HR McMaster to discuss counter-terrorism, bilateral relations and ways to take Indo-US ties forward.
The meeting between Jaishankar and McMaster gains significance as the top military leader was appointed the National Security Advisor by US President Donald Trump.
During the meeting held at the White House, the two officials are believed to have discussed issues related to security relationship, counter-terrorism, and defence partnership.
Jaishankar also met Speaker of the House of Representatives Paul Ryan and discussed various issues, including ways to enhance economic and defence cooperation between both countries.
During his meeting with Jaishankar, Ryan expressed the condolences of the House of Representatives on the death of Srinivas Kuchibhotla, 32, and Alok Madasani, another Indian of the same age, injured in the shooting by navy veteran Adam Purinton, who yelled ''terrorist'' and ''get out of my country'' before opening fire on them.

Steel minister inaugurates maiden Regional conference of Eastern States.
Steel Minister Chaudhary Birender Singh address Regional conference on Enhancing steel consumption in India organized by Steel Ministry in Gangtok, Sikkim.
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 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.
The steel Minister emphasized on the numerous advantages of steel and promotion of steel intensive structures for longevity, safety and reducing costs during the construction and added that steel industry should develop innovative ways to make common man understand the numerous advantages of Steel.

March 3

India set to participate in Permanent Indus Commission meet in Lahore.
India is going to attend the Permanent Indus Commission meet, scheduled to be held in Lahore. Pakistan forwarded the invitation to India to resolve the Indus Water Treaty (IWT).
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 treaty which was signed in 1960 by Indian Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru and Pakistan President Ayub Khan, gives India control over the three eastern rivers of the Indus basin, the Beas, the Ravi and the Sutlej, while Pakistan has the three western rivers, the Indus, the Chenab and the Jhelum.

India to Host 10th International Conference on Theory and Practice of Electronic Governance: ICEGOV 2017.
The Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology, Government of India, in collaboration with United Nations University and UNESCO, is organizing a three-day International Conference 10th ICEGOV 2017 in Delhi from 7th March to Thursday, 9th March, 2017. Themed on Building Knowledge Societies: from Digital Government to Digital Empowerment, the ICEGOV 2017 will be inaugurated by Shri Ravi Shankar Prasad, Hon'ble Union Minister of Electronics & Information Technology and Law & Justice in the presence of Ms. Maria Manuel Leitao Marques.
The key objective of ICEGOV2017 is to explore how Digital Government can lead to Digital Empowerment by local knowledge. It is 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 Honorable Prime Minister’s vision to transform India into a transparent and digitally empowered country.
ICEGOV 2017 is the 10th edition of ICEGOV, which will focus on the use of technology to transform relationships between government and citizens, businesses, civil society. It will try 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.

March 4

National Conference on Jal Kranti Abhiyan held in New Delhi.
Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation has organized a national conference on Jal Kranti Abhiyan in New Delhi on 2017. Union Minister for Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation Sushri Uma Bharti will inaugurate the conference.
Union Ministers of State for Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation Dr. Sanjeev Kumar Baliyan and Shri Vijay Goel will also attend the conference.
About 700 participants representing various stakeholder groups such as farmers, Panchayat members, officials, NGOs and students will be attending the daylong conference.
One of the main objectives of the Jal Kranti Abhiyan is ''strengthening grass root involvement of all stakeholders including Panchayati Raj institutions and local bodies for Participatory Irrigation Management''.
There are four important components of Jal Kranti Abhiyan viz. Jal Gram Yojana, Development of Model Command Area, Pollution Abatement and Mass Awareness Programme.
Under Jal Gram Yojana two water stressed villages in each district of the country are to be selected and a comprehensive water security plan is formulated to achieve water security for these villages.
So far 726 such villages have been identified against the total target of 828. Integrated Water Security Plan for 180 Villages have been prepared and 61 of them have been approved.

March 5

Destination North East 2017 to be host by Chandigarh.
Chandigarh will be hosting a three-day long Destination North East 2017 event, aimed at showcasing North East as a potential destination for investment.
The event is being organised by the Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER), government of India and an industry body PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
The event will see round table discussions and exhibition stalls showcasing various features of the North East Region in order to attract investments in tourism, skill development, food processing, handlooms and handicrafts, rural livelihoods, entrepreneurship and microfinance, horticulture and floriculture, medicinal & aromatic plants, organic farming and bamboo development.
The objective of Destination North East, 2017 is to showcase North East as a potential destination for investment and highlight the rich cultural heritage, traditions and customs of the region.

March 6

Labour Ministry to soon convene meet to increase EPFO stock market exposure to 15 per cent.
The labour ministry will soon convene a meeting of the Central Board of Trustees (CBT) to secure its nod to increase EPFO's stock market exposure to 15 per cent, from 10 per cent as of now.
We have put in 10 per cent, investing Rs. 17,000 crore in exchange traded funds (ETFs). Now, we are thinking of raising it to 15 per cent. I want to talk to the Central Board of Trustees in about 10-12 days, Labour Minister Bandaru Dattatreya.
CBT is the apex body of the Employees' Provident Fund Organisation chaired by the labour minister. It is represented by members from the labour ministry on behalf of the central government, EFPO, state governments, employers and trade unions.

3-day international conference on e-governance begin.
A three-day international conference on e-governance 'ICEGOV 2017' that will discuss the role of technology in transforming relation between government and its citizens, businesses and civil society, begins.
The event is being organized by the Electronics and IT Ministry in collaboration with United Nations University and UNESCO.
The ICEGOV 2017 - with the theme 'Building knowledge Societies: From Digital Government to Digital Empowerment' - will be inaugurated by Minister of Electronics and IT, Law & Justice, Ravi Shankar Prasad, in the presence of Maria Manuel Leitao Marques, Minister of Presidency and Administrative Modernisation, Portugal.

Mobile World Congress to be held in India on September 27.
India will organize its first mobile congress in September 27 with a special focus on reaching out to the South East Asian markets. There is Mobile World Congress in Barcelona and an edition in Shanghai.
There is nothing in between for South East Asia. India is emerging as one of the global leaders in telecom which we will also showcase in the Indian Mobile Congress, COAI Director General Rajan S Mathews.
The GSM Association, which organises annual global event of Mobile World Congress (MWC), has agreed to associate with the three-day event that will be held at Pragati Maidan starting September 27.

March 8

Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) Concludes First-Ever Leaders' Summit.
For the first time, leaders of the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) are meeting in Jakarta, Indonesia, for a summit.
IORA has 21 member states, including Australia, Bangladesh, Comoros, India, Indonesia, Iran, Kenya, Madagascar, Malaysia, Mauritius, Mozambique, Oman, Seychelles, Singapore, Somalia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Thailand, UAE, and Yemen.
The theme of this year’s conference is ''Strengthening Maritime Cooperation for a Peaceful, Stable and Prosperous Indian Ocean''. Among the leaders in attendance are Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena, Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, South African President Jacob Zuma, Indonesian President Joko ''Jokowi'' Widodo (the host), Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, and Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak. Other states sent high-level representation, including India, which sent its vice president, Hamid Ansari.

March 9

11th North East Business Summit begins in New Delhi.
The 11th North East Business Summit (NEBS) began. The two-day event is an initiative to facilitate investment, highlight strengths of the North-East Region (NER) and business opportunities which North-East has to offer.
Union Minister for Railways, Shri Suresh Prabhu, in a video message delivered on the occasion, an e-commerce portal will soon be launched to sell NER handicrafts and handloom worldwide on the IRCTC website.
Pointing out that most of the NER horticulture and agriculture produce is exported to neighbouring countries bordering the NER, Shri Verma the Government is committed to encourage value addition to the region’s natural produce.
The DoNER Secretary urged the entrepreneurs to take advantage of investment opportunities in the region especially as all Central Ministries have earmarked 10 percent budget to projects in the NER.
Shri Verma called upon the organizers of the NEBS to host the next Summit in the North Eastern Region so as to demonstrate the emergence of the region as a business destination.

Meeting held b/w Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan new US Energy Secretary Rick Perry.
Minister of State for Petroleum and Natural Gas Dharmendra Pradhan has discussed with new Energy Secretary Rick Perry the possibility of importing LNG from the US and Indian investment in the energy sector there.
Pradhan met Perry during an unscheduled trip to the US Capitol and discussed energy cooperation between India and the US, Indian investment in Liquefied natural gas (LNG) and Shale sectors, and the possibility of the US exporting LNG to India from early next year.
Perry co-operation between India and the US in the energy sector is in mutual interest as India’s energy need is set to see a rapid increase as the economy expands.
Pradhan arrived in Washington DC from Houston, a city located near the Gulf of Mexico, where he attended the influential CERAWeek energy conference and launched the new Hydrocarbon Exploration and Licensing Policy (HELP).

March 10

International Vision Zero Conference on Occupational, Safety and Health Begins In New Delhi.
The international conference on the VISION ZERO and its relevance to Occupational Safety and Health (OSH), is being organized from 15th to 17th, March 2017 at Vigyan Bhavan, New Delhi by Directorate General Factory Advice and Labour Institutes (DGFASLI), Government of India, Ministry of Labour and Employment and German Social Accident Insurance (DGUV), Germany in association with International Social Security Association (ISSA).
The conference aims to focus on the Occupational Safety and Health issues and challenges in the Manufacturing, Construction and Mining sector. The conference will provide a forum for promoting safety and health at work by exchanging knowledge, practices and experience.
The conference will be inaugurated by the Hon'ble Minister of State (Independent) for Labour and Employment, Shri Bandaru Dattatreya, in the gracious presence of Smt. M. Sathiyavathy, Secretary, Labour and Employment, Government of India.


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