NHAI Approved Pilot Project for Developing Greenbelts
- The National Highways Authority of India (NHA1) approved a pilot project for developing greenbelts along the National Highways (NHs) on November 27, 2015. The project will run for five years.
- The project will be implemented on a 5 km stretch on NH-7 between Jam and Hinganghai in Nagpur region at an estimated cost of 7 11.80 crore. Around 20000 trees of scientifically chosen species have been proposed to be planted on both sides of the stretch in multiple rows.
- The project was submitted by the National Environmental Engineering Research Institute (NEER1), Nagpur for undertaking scientific studies on designing greenbelts along national highways. During five years various experiments will be conducted in NEERJ laboratory to record the impact of greenbelt development.
Government Approved Rs 3120 Crore for Infrastructure Boost
- The Urban Development Ministry approved an investment of Rs 3120 crore under the Atai Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation (AMRUT) on November 26, 2015 for boosting urban infrastructure in 102 cities across five States.
- With this approval, the Ministry has so far cleared a total investment of Rs 11654 crore in 272 Atai Mission cities for improving infrastructure for ensuring water and sewerage connections to all households in such sties besides, enabling water supply as per the norm of 135 litres per capita per day for urban areas.
- At present, only about 50% of urban households are provided with water connections and water supply is about 75 Ipcd. Availability of sewerage connections is very low. Atai Mission seeks to bridge this deficit.
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2019 is the New Deadline for Completion of PMGSY Schemes
- The Union government on November, 2015, reduced the deadline for completion of rural connectivity through all-weather roads under Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY) by three years from 2022 to 2019.
- The government has also decided to increase the annual allocation oi the Central release for PMGSt works during year 2015-16 by 7 5000 crore and with this the total Central allocation to Stares would now be 7 15100 crore.
- The goverment has also accepted the recommendation of the Sub-Group of Chief Ministers qn Rationalisation of Centrally Sponsored on modified sharing pattern in the ratio of 60.40 belween the Centre and States for all states except for 8 North-Eastern and 3 Himalayan States, where the formulae of 90.10 will be applied.
HRD Ministry Set-up Expert Panel for Promotion of Sanskrit
- The Human Resource Development Ministry has constituted a 13-member expert panel on November 22. 2015 in a bid to promote Sanskrit language in the country. The committee will be headed by the former Chief Election Commissioner (CEC), N. Gopalaswami.
- The committee will also examine the ways in which the language can be integrated with other disciplines such as Physics, Chemistry’, Mathematics, Medical Science and Law.
- The committee will also study current issues related to teaching Sanskrit as an academic subject. The HRD Ministry also had earlier set-up a panel for promotion of classical languages. In October, 2014, it was decided to discontinue the teaching of German language as an option to Sanskrit.
Union Cabinet Approved Setting-up of NARF
- The Union Cabinet, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has approved on November 18. 2015, the proposal of the Department of Health Research in the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare for setting-up of a National Resource Facility for Bio-medical Research (NARF) at Genome Valley in Hyderabad by the Indian Council for Medical Research (ICMR).
- The institution will be the first of its kind for quality laboratory animals for basic and applied biomedical research in the country.
- It will be developed as a world-class facility for breeding and housing of animals such as primates, cabines and other specialised models such as transgenic and knockout rodents required for testing of various R&D products.
Technology Acquisition and Development Fund’ Launched
- The Minister of State for Commerce & Industry (Independent Charge), Nirmaia Sitharaman, launched on November 18, 2015 the Technology Acquisition and Development Fund (TADF) under National Manufacturing Policy. It is being implemented by Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion (DIPP).
- The TADF is a new scheme to facilitate acquisition of Clean, Green & Energy Efficient Technologies, in form of Technology/Customised Products, Specialised Services Patents/Industrial Design available in the market available in India or globally, by Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) across the sectors.
- The Scheme is conceptualised to contribute to the national focus of ‘Make in India’ and bridge the technological gap at an affordable cost. Under the Scheme which would be implemented through Global Innovation and Technology Alliance (GITA), a joint venture company, support to MSME units is envisaged by Direct Support for Technology Acquisition and In direct Support for Technology Acquisition through Patent Pool.
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