Daily Current Affairs for UPSC IAS Preparation: 28 October 2017

Dr Rajiv Kumar, Vice Chairman, NITI Aayog delivers 24th CVC lecture on the topic “New India @ 2022”

The 24rd  lecture of the “Lecture Series” organized by the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC), was delivered by Dr. Rajiv Kumar, Vice Chairman, NITI Aayog, on the topic “New India @ 2022”.

In his lecture, Dr Rajiv Kumar spoke about many facets of India’s development, covering a broad historical perspective of our national development over time. He spoke of development as a mass movement, and discussed the three transformations that India is simultaneously going through – economic, social and political.

The different stages of India’s transformation were explained in a historical perspective, each period being characterized by deepening mass participation corresponding to the phase of economic, social and political transformation. The period from 1857-1942 was the period of India’s freedom struggle, which culminated in our political independence in 1947. The period from 1947 to 2017 was the period of post-independence India, accompanied by corresponding economic, social and political transformations. These transformations would become more significant with increasing mass participation in future, each future period being explained as a  point in time, viz., 2017  (Sankalp se Siddhi), 2022 (New India) and 2047 (Sarvashreshtha Bharat). The roadmap for future development was discussed in detail, with specific goals established for the various transformations envisaged, such as Poverty Free India, Dirt and Squalor Free India, Corruption Free India, Communalism Free India and Terrorism Free India.

The lecture was followed by a lively question and answer session where the audience put several questions on issues of contemporary relevance to the distinguished speaker. This lecture was attended by full time and part time CVOs based in Delhi/NCR as well as CMDs, Directors and other officers of Government Ministries/Departments, Central Public Sector Enterprises, Nationalized Banks, and other Organizations.


Shri Piyush Goyal inaugurates International Conference on Green Initiatives & Railway Electrification

Minister of Railways & Coal Shri Piyush Goyal inaugurated International Conference on Green Initiatives & Railway Electrification organised by Ministry of Railways through Institution of Railways Electrical Engineer (IREE) India. Minister of State for Railways & Minister of State for Communications (Independent Charge) Shri Manoj Sinha was specially present to grace the occasion.

The main objective of the two days international conference is to bring green power project developers and other stakeholders on a common platform for making Indian Railways (IR) an efficient and Greener mode of transport. This will open an international discussion on various Green initiatives including use of renewable energy, shift towards electric traction, development of new locomotive technology, high speed rail traction system and development in generation of Solar/Wind power as well as use of energy in efficient ways. This conference has the aim for giving boost to ‘Make in India’ and ‘Innovative India’ campaigns of Hon’ble Prime Minister of India.

Theme of the conference aims at achieving following activities:

1) Moving Indian Railways towards 100% Electric traction – Showcase new technologies, mechanisation and innovative solutions for speedy electrification.

2) Meeting Indian Railways high speed Locomotive requirements.

3) OHE for 200 kmph- Requirements & How to achieve in existing OHE.

4) Solutions for Energy Efficiency and increasing use of Renewable Energy on Indian Railways.

This conference will work as a platform to learn & share experiences of international & national experts and industry leaders on electrification, renewable energy technologies & solutions and best practices in the Rail Sector. This will further promote and popularize ‘Make in India’ initiative a new Indian Railways through promoting a sustainable approach implementing Energy Efficiency and increasing use of Renewable Energy in Indian Railways.


India and France to Strengthen Bilateral Defence Cooperation as a Key Pillar of Their Strategic Partnership

Raksha Mantri Smt Nirmala Sitharaman received the French Minister for the Armed Forces, Ms Florence Parly, in South Block. Minister Parly is visiting India from 26-28 October, 2017 on her first official visit as the French Minister for the Armed Forces.

The Ministers reviewed ongoing initiatives to further strengthen bilateral defence cooperation as a key pillar of the strategic partnership between India and France. They also discussed regional and international developments of mutual interest.

A range of measures to expand military to military ties, including enhancing the scope of their joint exercises, in particular the VARUNA naval exercise scheduled in early 2018, were agreed upon. Both countries will also actively explore additional measures to facilitate operational level interactions between their respective armed forces.

The Ministers reiterated their strong intention to further expand bilateral cooperation on counter- terrorism. Recognising the growing significance of maritime security in the Indo-Pacific and the need for greater maritime domain awareness, India and France will further expand information sharing arrangements building upon the Technical Arrangement on Exchange of White Shipping information signed earlier this year.

The two Ministers also comprehensively reviewed developments in defence equipment and industry cooperation, where France is a major partner. They agreed to strongly support projects for defence manufacturing under the Make in India initiative as well as promote defence technology and R&D cooperation.


Ministry of Tourism conducts Workshop on Innovation in Tourism

The Ministry of Tourism, Government of India organised a workshop on ‘Innovation in Tourism’ to receive innovative ideas and suggestions from stakeholders in the tourism sector to keep abreast with the developments taking place around the globe and respond to them in a proactive and adequate manner.

The workshop was chaired by Shri K. J. Alphons, Minister of State for Tourism (I/C) and attended by approximately 50 participants representing various segments of tourism industry viz hotels, tour operators, travel Agents, adventure tour operators, tourism professionals, media representatives and Trade Associations. Secretary, Ministry of Tourism and other senior officials also participated in the workshop.

The workshop deliberated extensively on various issues affecting Indian tourism and the came out with innovative solutions to overcome such issues and in order to position India as the most preferred destinations.

Some of the key innovative ideas that emerged in the workshop included effective promotion of Buddhist circuits and opening of land border at Piprahwa, countering negative publicity by putting in place an integrated ‘Reputation Management’ strategy and appointing a dedicated PR agency, constituting a Crisis Management Cell making available quality tourist guides (including those proficient in foreign languages), engaging with travel bloggers for generating positive stories on India on social media , setting up of a company through SPV to handle marketing and PR , advising the State Governments to replicate the best practices followed by states proactive in tourism , engaging with the NRI’s & POI through India missions abroad and preparing a country wide festival calendar.

Shri K. J. Alphons during the workshop informed that Ministry of Tourism will be constituting two Committees to work on Development of Buddhist Circuits and to, advise on Marketing & PR . It was also decided to regularly interact with the related central Ministries on matters pertaining to development and promotion of tourism and facilitating the tourist to ensure that they have a pleasant & memorable experience during their visit to India.