[Notes] Year 2013 Review - Important Points

Year review 2013

The Ministry of Housing & Poverty Alleviation 

1.      Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Bill, 2013,

           During the year under review, the Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Bill was introduced in the Rajya Sabha. 
*      A uniform regulatory environment, to protect consumer interests,
*      Help speedy adjudication of disputes and ensure orderly growth of the real estate sector and has been much awaited by all aspiring home buyers.
*      The Bill is a pioneering initiative to protect the interest of consumers, to promote fair play in real estate transactions and to ensure timely execution of projects.
*      The Bill once enacted will lead to establishment of Real Estate Regulatory Authority and  Real Estate Appellate Tribunal  in every State for registration of all real estate projects and for speedier dispute resolution.  Stringent penalties have been sought to be imposed on habitual offenders.
*      Currently, the real estate and housing sector is largely unregulated and opaque, with consumers often unable to procure complete information, or enforce accountability against builders and developers in the absence of effective regulation.

2.      Street Vendors (Protection of Livelihood and Regulation of Street Vending) Bill, 2013 :

*      The Bill provides for protection of livelihoods rights, social security of street vendors, regulation of urban street vending in the country and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto.
*      The proposed Bill provides for a survey of existing street vendors. The manner of identification of street vendors will be specified in the scheme made by the concerned State/UT Governments as per provisions of the proposed Bill.  During the year, the Bill was passed by the Lok Sabha and is pending for consideration in the Rajya Sabha.

3. Rajiv Awas Yojana Scheme  Launched : 

*      Centrally Sponsored Scheme (CSS), and to be implemented in Mission mode during 2013-2022.
*      RAY will adopt a two pronged approach of  bringing all existing slums within the formal system and enabling them to avail the basic amenities that is available for the rest of the city and  Redressing the failures of the formal system that lie behind the creation of slums by planning for affordable housing stock for the urban poor and initiating crucial policy changes required for facilitating the same. 
*      In the implementation phase, RAY will cover all towns, cities and urban agglomerations in the country.
*      The Government of India would fund 50%, 75% and 80% of the project cost for towns, cities and urban agglomerations with Population more than 5 lakhs, less than 5 lakhs and those in North- Eastern Region and special category States of Jammu & Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh & Uttarakhand, respectively.

4.  Affordable Housing in Partnership Scheme (AHP):

*      The AHP  has been dovetailed with RAY with an aim to increase affordable housing stock. The Scheme which was earlier launched in 2009 in pursuance of the National Urban Housing and Habitat Policy 2007 to promote the agenda of ‘Affordable Housing for All’ was redesigned following the recommendations of the Task Force on Affordable Housing constituted by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation in 2011.
*      The modified Scheme will provide a subsidy of Rs. 75,000 per Economically Weaker Section (EWS) or Low Income Group (LIG) Dwelling Units of size 21-40 sqm
*      The project shall also mandatorily reserve 35 percent of the total number of dwelling units for EWS category (21-27 sqm.).The Scheme will apply to all towns, cities and urban agglomerations, mainly to the cities covered under Rajiv Awas Yojana.


5. Rajiv Rinn Yojana (RRY):

*      Under the Scheme , an interest subsidy of 5% (500 Basis Points) on loans will be granted to EWS and LIG categories to construct their houses or extend the existing ones.
*      The Loan upper limit would be Rs 5 lakh for EWS and 8 lakh for LIG; with the interest subsidy however limited to the loan amount of Rs 5lakh, The loan duration of 15 years would be normally entertained. 

6. National Urban Livelihoods Mission (NULM):

*      The NULM will be implemented in two phases: Phase I (2013-2017) and Phase II (2017-2022).
*      In phase I, NULM will target all cities with a population of 100,000 or more and district headquarter towns with a population of less than 100,000 as per Census of India 2011.
*       The Mission of NULM is to reduce poverty and vulnerability of the urban poor households by enabling them access to gainful self-employment and skilled wage employment opportunities, resulting in an appreciable improvement in their livelihoods on a sustainable basis, through building strong grassroots level institutions of the poor. 
*      The mission would also aim at providing shelter equipped with essential services to the urban homeless in a phased manner. In addition, the Mission would also address livelihood concerns of the urban street vendors by facilitating access to suitable spaces, institutional credit, social security and skills for accessing emerging market opportunities.

Ministry of home affairs

Strengthening of Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967

*      The Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Amendment Act, 2012 as passed by the Parliament has come into force from February 01,2013.  
*      The Act enlarges the ambit of the “Terrorist Act” by incorporating threats/dangers to the economic security of the country and the monetary stability of India by way of production, smuggling or circulation of high quality counterfeit Indian paper currency.  
*      The law increases the period of declaration of an association as unlawful from two years to five years, criminalizes high quality counterfeiting and includes within its scope offences by companies, societies or trusts and provides for punishment to them.

The Criminal Law (Amendment) Act, 2013:  

*      A Committee headed by Justice J. S. Verma, former Chief Justice of Supreme Court was set up on 23rd December, 2012 to give recommendations on amending laws to provide for speedy justice and enhanced punishment for criminals in sexual assault cases
*      In the Budget Session, the Criminal Law [Amendment] Bill, 2013 was passed by the Lok Sabha on 19th March, 2013 and by the Rajya Sabha on 21st March, 2013. The President of India has accorded his assent to the Bill on 2nd April, 2013.
*      Substantive amendments in IPC, Cr. P. C and Indian Evidence Act have been made to effectively deal with the crime against women.
*      Sentence of death has been provided as punishment in case of rape followed by death or vegetative state of the victim.
*       For the first time acid attack, human trafficking, voyeurism, stalking etc. have been included as a specific offence and severe punishment has been prescribed.
*       Non- treatment of victims of rape and acid attack by the hospitals (Government/ Private) has been made punishable.
*      The police has been made accountable and disobeying of any directions of law (like not recording of FIR) has been made punishable.  
*      Adequate provisions have been made to protect the women victim from harassment and humiliation during investigation and trial.

 Internal Security

*      Terrorist activities in the hinterland continue to remain a threat.  There have been three incidents of bomb blasts:- first in Hyderabad in which 17 persons died, the second in Bengaluru in which there was no casualty and the third in Bodh Gaya in which no casualty was reported.
*       The MHA has agreed to the request of the Bihar Government  for handing over the security of Bodh Gaya Complex to CISF.  In some of these incidents, the Investigating Agencies have been able to identify and arrest the persons responsible and in other cases the investigations are on. 
*       The Government is committed for safety and security  of its citizens and in this regard the   arrest of Yasin Bhatkal, Tunda, Haddi and solving  of recent blasts cases proves this resolve.

 Uttarakhand Disaster of June 2013

*      The State of Uttarakhand witnessed a severe disaster due to heavy rainfall, cloudbursts and landslides on 16-17th June, 2013.  All the 13 districts of Uttarakhand were affected.  The disaster was so massive that 580 people lost their lives, while 4473 people were injured.  Besides over 5526 people are missing.  .  In a massive rescue operation 1,10,000 persons were rescued. 

 Modernisation of State Police Forces

*      The Scheme for Modernization of State Police Forces (MPF Scheme) has been extended for a further period of five years with effect from the financial year 2012-13 to 2016-17, with funding partly under Non-Plan and partly under Plan.   
*      The items required by the State Police under mobility, weapons, equipment, training equipment, forensic equipment are funded under Non-Plan. 
*       The construction/upgradation of police stations/outposts, police lines, police housing, forensic science laboratories and training infrastructure, construction of buildings are funded under Plan budget.

Crime and Criminal Tracking Network & Systems

*      Crime and Criminal Tracking Network & Systems (CCTNS), Mission Mode Scheme was approved in 2009 with a provision of Rs 2000 Crores as a 100 % Centrally Sponsored Scheme to be implemented during 2009-2012. This has now been extended up to 31st March, 2015.   
*      A Pilot launch of CCTNS was launched on 4th January, 2013 which earmarked connectivity of nearly 2000 CCTNS locations in 25 States/Uts.  
*      The implementation of the project has picked up and  contracts with System Integrators have been signed in different States/Uts.

 Revised Travel Arrangements between India and Bangladesh

*      The Visa free regime has been agreed on reciprocal basis for holders of Diplomatic and Official Passports for a period up to 45 days of stay.
*      Grant of double entry visa valid for a maximum period of three months can be granted to Bangladeshi nationals applying visa for third countries, whose representative Missions are concurrently accredited to Bangladesh from India.
*       It also provides for medical visa, long term multiple employment visa and multiple entry student visa etc.

Ministry of Women & Child Development

Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013:

*      Sexual Harassment at the workplace is a violation of women’s right to gender equality, life and liberty. It creates an insecure and hostile work environment, which discourages women’s participation in work, thereby adversely affecting their economic empowerment and the goal of inclusive growth.
*      The Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013 came into force with effect from 9th December 2013.  The Act seeks to cover all women, irrespective of their age or employment status and protect them against sexual harassment at all workplaces both in public and private sector, whether organized or unorganized.
*      The Act under Section 4 and Section 6 creates a redressal mechanism in the form of Internal Complaints Committee (ICC) and Local Complaints Committee (LCC). All workplaces employing 10 or more than 10 workers are mandated under the Act to constitute an ICC. Complaints from workplaces employing less than 10 workers or when the complaint is against the employer will be looked into by the LCC.  A  District Officer notified under the Act will constitute the LCC at the district level.
*       The Act mandates that the Committee shall complete the inquiry within a time period of 90 days. On completion of the inquiry, the report will be sent to the employer or the District Officer, as the case may be and they are mandated to take action on the report within 60 days.
*       The Act under Section 19 casts a responsibility on every employer to create an environment which is free from sexual harassment. Under it employers are required to organize workshops and awareness programmes at regular intervals for sensitizing the employees about the provision of this legislation and display notices regarding the constitution of Internal Committee, penal consequences of sexual harassment etc.
*       All Internal Complaints Committees are required to submit Annual reports to the employer who in turn will submit it to the district officer. All Local Complaints Committee shall submit their annual report to the district officer. The district officers will submit the report annually to the State Governments.

Indira Gandhi Matritva Sahyog Yojana (IGMSY)

*      A Conditional Cash Transfer scheme for pregnant and lactating women to better enabling environment by providing cash incentives for improved health and nutrition to pregnant and nursing mothers.
*      It is being implemented initially on pilot basis in 53 selected districts using the platform of ICDS.
*      Pregnant women of 19 years of age and above for first two live births are entitled for benefits under the scheme.
*      All Government/PSUs (Central & State) employees are excluded from the scheme as they are entitled for paid maternity leave.
*      The beneficiaries are paid Rs.6000/- in two equal installments per pregnant and lactating women on fulfilling specific conditions related to maternal and child health to partly compensation for wage loss to mothers/women during pregnancy and period of lactation.
*      The scheme is now covered under Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) programme and under which 16 districts have been included under Phase-I and Phase-II of the implementation.
*      As per provision of the National Food Security Act, 2013, the Ministry has reviewed the entitlement of maternity benefits of IGMSY beneficiaries in 53 districts from Rs. 4000 to Rs. 6000

2.      RMK: Rashtriya Mahila Kosh

*      (National Credit Fund for Women) was set up in 1993 with the objective of providing micro-credit to poor women for various livelihood.
*       Provide income generating activities at concessional terms in a client-friendly credit delivery process and thereby bringing about their socio-economic development.

3. Swadhar – A Scheme for Women in Different Circumstances

*      Swadhar Scheme was launched by the Ministry during the year 2001-02
*      To provide primary need of shelter, food, clothing and care to the marginalized women/girls living in difficult circumstances who are without any social and economic support;
*      To provide emotional support and counseling to rehabilitate them socially and economically through education, awareness etc.;
*       To arrange for specific clinical, legal and other support for women/girls in need;
*       To provide for help line or other facilities to such women in distress.

4.      Ujjawala

*      The scheme was introduced in Dec, 2007
*      Prevention, which envisages formation of Community Vigilance Groups/ adolescences groups, awareness and sensitization of stake holders and preparation of IEC material, holding workshop etc.
*      Rescue, safe withdrawal of the victim from the place of exploitation.
*       Rehabilitation, which includes providing safe shelter for victims with basic inputs of food, clothing, counseling, medical care, legal aid, vocational training and income generation activities etc.
*       Reintegration, which includes restoring the victim into the family/community (if so she desires) and follow up.
*      Repatriation, to provide support to cross-border victims for their safe repartition to their country of origin.

5.      Working Women Hostel (WWH)

*      Under the Scheme of Working Women Hostel financial assistance is provided for construction/ running of Hostel in rented premises for those working women who may be single, widowed, divorced, separated, married but whose husband or immediate family does not reside in the same area and for those women who are under training for job.

6.      Short Stay Homes (SSH)

*      The Scheme of Short Stay Home was launched in 1969.
*      This scheme was handed over for implementation to the Central Social Welfare Board during 1999-2000.
*        The Scheme is implemented through registered voluntary organizations having experience of handling the issues related to women and girls.
*      The budget under scheme varies as per the categorization of cities.
*      Enhancement of grant @ 10% for "Maintenance of inmates" every year and 15% for "Rent" provision after completion of every three years, is provided in the budget plan of the scheme. The period of stay of inmates normally extends from 6 months to 3 years.

7.      Family Counselling Centres

*      Launched in 1983.
*       The centers provide counselling, referral and rehabilitative services to the women and children who are victims of atrocities, family maladjustments and social  ostracism and also provide crisis intervention and trauma counselling in case of natural disasters.
*       The centers also create awareness and mobilize public opinion on social issues affecting status of women.
*      The FCCs work in close collaboration with the legal administration, police, courts, free legal aids cells, medical and psychiatric institutions, vocational training centers and short stay homes.

8.      Awareness Generation Programme

*      The Scheme was reformulated in 1986-87 in order to enlarge the scope of the scheme by incorporating components leading to enhancement of socio-economic status and renamed as Awareness Generation Project.  

9.       Condensed Courses Of Education For Adult Women

*       The scheme aims to provide educational opportunities to girls/women above the age of 15 years along with additional inputs of skill development/vocational training.

10.  Rajiv Gandhi National Creche Scheme

*      The present Rajiv Gandhi National Creche Scheme provides assistance to NGOs for running crèches for infants (0-6 years) and assistance is provided to ensure sleeping facilities, health-care, supplementary nutrition, immunization etc., for running a creche for 25 infants for eight hours i.e. from 9.00 a.m. to 5.00 p.m.

11.  Innovative Scheme

*      Scheme to cover the left out areas related to such groups of women and children. Several projects under this programme are being run for the welfare of prostitutes, rag-pickers and other such sections of society.

12.  STEP

*      Scheme Support to Training and Employment Programme (STEP) for women to ensure sustainable employment and income generation for margininalized and asset-less rural and urban women across the country. This scheme is a Central Sector Scheme.

13.  Women Empowerment and Livelihood Programme in Mid Gangetic Plain-‘PRIYADARSHINI’

*      The Ministry is administering IFAD assisted pilot project namely Women’s Empowerment and Livelihoods Programme in the Mid Gangetic Plains “Priyadarshini” in 13 blocks spread over 5 districts in Uttar Pradesh and 2 districts in Bihar.
*       The Programme aims at holistic empowerment (economic and social) of vulnerable groups of women and adolescent girls in the project area through formation of Women’s Self Help Groups (SHGs) and promotion of improved livelihood opportunities.           
*      The National Bank of Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) is the lead programme agency for the implementation.
*      The programme envisages giving training to the SHG members on topics such as income generation and allied activities, marketing of products and social issues etc.

1.                      Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act, 2012:

*      Model Guidelines under the POSCO Act, 2012 were issued by the Ministry on 18th September, 2013 under Section 39 of the POSCO Act. 
*      State governments are required to make guidelines for the use of professionals to assist the child in pre-trial and trial stage. 
*      model guidelines through consultations.

2.                      Prohibition of Child Marriage Act, 2006:

*      Government of India has brought in a more progressive Prohibition of Child Marriage Act, 2006 that includes punitive measures against those who perform, permit and promote child marriage.
*      This Act came into effect in November, 2007.As per Section 16(1) of the Act, the State Government shall, by notification in the Official Gazette, appoint for the whole State, or such part thereof as may be specified in that Notification, an officer or officers to be known as Child Marriage Prohibition Officers (CMPO) having jurisdiction over the area or areas specified in the notification.
*      Under Section 19(1) the State Government may, by Notification in the Official Gazette, make Rules for carrying out the provisions of this Act.

1.       Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) Scheme

*      It is the foremost symbol of country’s commitment to its children and nursing mothers, as a response to the challenge of providing pre-school non-formal education on one hand and breaking the vicious cycle of malnutrition, morbidity, reduced learning capacity and mortality on the other. 
*      The beneficiaries under the Scheme are children in the age group of 0-6 years, pregnant women and lactating mothers.

Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment

Revision in the Scheme of Post Matric Scholarship for the Scheduled Castes Students

*      The objective of this Scheme is to provide financial assistance to scheduled caste students studying at post matriculation or post-secondary stage to enable them to complete their education.
*      The financial assistance includes maintenance allowance, reimbursement of non-refundable compulsory fee, Book Bank facility and other allowances.

Scheme of Top Class Education for Scheduled Caste Students: Inclusion of New Institutions

*      Under this Central Sector Scheme, SC students who secure the admission in the notified institutions are provided full financial support to meet the requirements of Tuition fees, living expenses, books and computer. 

Elimination of Manual Scavenging: New law for prohibition of Employment of   Manual Scavengers and their rehabilitation

*      "The Prohibition of Employment as Manual Scavengers and their Rehabilitation Act, 2013”has been passed by the Parliament and has come into force on 6th December 2013.

The Constitution (Scheduled Castes) Orders (Amendment) Bill, 2012

*      to include certain castes as synonyms in the lists of Scheduled Castes for the States of Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha and Tripura;
*       to omit one caste from the list of Scheduled Castes of Sikkim, was referred to the Department related Standing Committee, which approved the amendments in the Bill, in its entirety.  The Lok Sabha has passed the Bill on 31.08.2013.

Extension of Tenure of the National Commission for Safai Karmacharis (NCSK)

*      The Cabinet, in its meeting held on 21.02.2013, approved the extension of the term of the National Commission for Safai Karmacharis (NCSK) for a further period of three years, from 01.04.2013 to 31.03.2016.

Utilisation of 10% of Special Central Assistance (SCA) to Scheduled Castes Sub Plan (SCSP) Funds for Skill Development

*      The Finance Minister had, during his Budget Speech 2013-14, announced that 10% of Special Central Assistance (SCA) to Scheduled Castes Sub Plan (SCSP) Funds would be utilized for Skill Development.
*      the Guidelines have been issued to States/UTs to utilize at least 10% of SCA to SCSP funds for skill development programmes within existing framework of the Scheme w.e.f. the current financial year 2013-14, in order to enhance the employability of the Scheduled Caste persons.

Up-gradation of Merit of SC/ST Students

*      The Scheme has been revised with effect from 01.08.2013 as follows: (a) The number of slots for each State has been increased; (b) The rate of scholarship has been enhanced from Rs. 15,000 to Rs. 25,000 per annum; and (c) The rate of Disability Assistance has been doubled.

The Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989

*      The Cabinet note on The Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989 was sent to the Cabinet Secretariat on 22.08.2013 and 28.10.2013 containing the proposed amendments in the Act. The Cabinet in its meeting held on 13.11.2013, approved the amendments. The Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes(Prevention of Atrocities)Amendment Bill has been introduced in the Lok Sabha during the winter session of the Parliament on 12.12.2013.

UMBRELLA-SCHEME: Scheme for Development of Scheduled Castes

*      The Umbrella Scheme would subsume the existing Schemes indicated below:-
*      Post Matric Scholarship Scheme for SC Students, Pre-Matric Scholarship Scheme for SC students (studying in Classes I & X),Pre-Matric Scholarship to the Children of those engaged in the unhygienic occupations,Up-gradation of Merit of SC students,*Grant for construction of Boys & Girls Hostels for SC students,State Scheduled Castes Development Corporations,Protection of Civil Rights (PCR) Act, 1955 & Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989.Pradhan Mantri Adarsh Gram Yojana
*      *The Planning Commission has, inter-alia, indicated to merge the Schemes for construction of hostels for SCs and OBCs. 

Backward Classes Development

*      Marketing support was provided by NBCFDC to artisans belonging to Other Backward Classes by organizing participation in the following exhibitions and fairs:
*      Surajkund Craft Mela at Faridabad, Haryana from 1st to 15th February, 2013 wherein beneficiaries, artisans/handicraft persons participated to display their products and handicrafts.
*      5th East Himalaya Expo 2013 at Siliguri, West Bengal from 25th to 31st October, 2013.
*      Shilpotsav 2013 on behalf of the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment at Dilli Haat, opposite INA market, New Delhi from 1st to 11th November, 2013
*      India International Trade Fair (IITF) 2013 at Pragati Maidan, New Delhi from 14th-27th November 2013.

National Policy of Senior Citizens (NPSC)

*      announced in 1999 to reaffirm the commitment to ensure the well-being of the older persons.
*       The Policy envisages State support to ensure financial and food security, health care, protection against abuse and exploitation, shelter and other needs of senior citizens to improve the quality of their lives. 
*      Keeping in view the changing demography of the senior citizens in the country over the last decade,
*      the Ministry constituted a Committee to (i) assess the present status of various issues concerning senior citizens, in general, and implementation of NPOP, 1999, in particular, and (ii) draft a new NPOP keeping in view the emerging trends in demographic, socio-economic, technological and other relevant fields. 
*      The Ministry observed the International Day for Older Persons (IDOP) on 1st October 2013.

Drug Abuse Prevention

*      to address the issue of alcoholism in the country. Under this Scheme, various Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs), Panchayati Raj Institutions, Urban Local Bodies etc are provided with financial assistance for running and maintenance of Integrated Rehabilitation Centers for Addicts (IRCAs).
*       Following awareness programmes were undertaken to prevent alcoholism in the society:

*      Awards for outstanding services in the field of prevention of alcoholism and substance (drug) abuse to encourage

*      The Ministry conducted an awareness generation programme in two states namely Punjab and Manipur during the year 2011-12 & 2012-13.

*      Nehru Yuva Kendra Sangathan through its network of volunteers at village level created awareness about the ill effects of alcoholism and substance (Drug) abuse among the rural masses. The addicts were identified and de-addiction camps were organized for these addicts.

Issues Relating to Transgender Persons

*      The Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment has been designated as the Nodal Ministry for Transgender Persons with effect from July 2012.
*      An Expert Committee has been constituted under the chairmanship of Additional Secretary (SJE) to make an in-depth study of the problems being faced by the Transgender Communitand suggest suitable measures for addressing these issues.

Skill Development Training to Youths

*      Principal Secretary to Prime Minister and National Skill Development Agency (NSDA) is monitoring the progress in regard to the persons being provided skill development training vis-à-vis the annual target set for the Ministry for the year 2013-14

Department of Disability Affairs

Rights of Persons with Disabilities Bill, 2013

*      The Persons with Disabilities (Equal Opportunities, Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Act, 1995 has been in force for over 17 years.
*       In order to harmonize the provisions of this Act in line with the United Nations Convention on Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD), the Act has been reviewed and a new Bill namely   Rights of Persons Disabilities Bill, 2013 was finalized after extensive consultations with the Central Ministries/Departments, State Governments/UTs and various stakeholders.
*      In the year 2012, the Ministry had signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Government of Afghanistan for bilateral cooperation in the area of Disabilities.
*      In terms of this MOU, Delegations from Government of Afghanistan already visited India twice this year and all necessary cooperation was extended to them to promote developing suitable infrastructure for empowerment of persons with disabilities.
*      Detailed guidelines for conducting examination by the academic institutions as well as by recruitment agencies for the persons with Disabilities has been issued 
*      The main objective of the Scheme is to provide grant in aid to the various implementing agencies (NGOs/NIs/District Disability Rehabilitation Centres/ALIMCO/State Handicapped Development Corporation/other local bodies) to assist the needy disabled persons in procuring durable, sophisticated and scientifically manufactured, modern, standard aids and appliances that can promote their physical, social and psychological rehabilitation, by reducing the effects of disabilities and enhance their economic potential.  The aids and appliances supplied under the Scheme must be ISI.  The scheme also envisages conduct of corrective surgeries, whenever required, before providing an assistive device.
*      To create infrastructure and capacity building at District level for providing comprehensive rehabilitation services to the persons with disabilities at the grass root level and for facilitating at the district level for awareness generation, training rehabilitation professionals the Ministry provides assistance for setting up District Disability Rehabilitation Centres (DDRCs) in under-served districts of the country. 

Achievements of Ministry of Tourism during the year 2013

2.       Infrastructure Development:

*      Infrastructure Development for Destination and Circuits (PIDDC), Human Resource Development (HRD), Fairs and Festivals and Adventure & Rural Tourism for infrastructure augmentation.
*      The Ministry has launched a scheme for development of nationally and internationally important destinations and circuits through Mega Projects
*      The mega projects are a judicious mix of culture, heritage, spiritual and ecotourism in order to give tourists a holistic perspective.                     

Broad Basing Of Hospitality Education

*      For this purpose, Ministry of Tourism supports creation of new Institutes of Hotel Management (IHM) and Food Craft Institutes (FCI) in States besides providing financial assistance for modernization and capacity enhancement of existing IHMs and FCIs.

Capacity building and employment generation:

Skill Testing and Certification of the Existing Service Providers

Hunar Se Rozgar Tak (HSRT) programme

*      A special initiative was launched in 2009 -10 for creation of employable skills amongst youth belonging to economically weaker strata of society in the age group of 18 to 25 years (upper age limit raised to 28 years in November, 2010) with the basic objective to reduce the skill gap affecting the hospitality and tourism sector and to ensure the spread of economic benefit of tourism to the poor

New Initiatives of Human Resource Development

Liberalisation of visa regime:-

More Port of Entries added for Tourist Visa on Arrival

*      The Tourist Visa on Arrival facility as extended to four more airports viz. Thiruvananthapuram,  Bengaluru, Hyderabad and Kochi w.e.f. 15.08.2013.

VOA Scheme becomes popular

*      a total number of 17,594 VoAs were issued as compared to 13,903 VoAs during the corresponding period of 2012 registering a growth of 26.5%.

 (v)    Tourist Police

*      The State Governments / UT Administrations of Andhra Pradesh, Goa, Karnataka, Kerala, Maharashtra, Himachal Pradesh, Rajasthan, Jammu & Kashmir, Uttar Pradesh, Delhi, Punjab, Madhya Pradesh and Odisha have deployed Tourist Police, in one form or the other.  

I respect women campaign:

*      a new campaign for the safety of women titled ‘I respect women’.

International focus on the North-East:

*      The 1st International Tourism Mart (ITM) was held at Guwahati in January, 2013 to promote the tourism potential of North-Eastern States of India. The 2nd International Tourism Mart (ITM) was held in Tawang, Arunachal Pradesh in the month of October, 2013. 
*      The North-East which was termed as a “Paradise Unexplored” has a huge tourism potential that is yet to be tapped of its true potential.

Focus on Bodhgaya:

*      The Ministry of Tourism, Government of India, the Departments of Tourism of the Governments of Bihar and Uttar Pradesh and International Finance Corporation (World Bank Group) have entered into an agreement to cooperate in upgrading the quality of services and goods provided for tourists along the “Buddhist Circuit” in UP & Bihar.

Additional Central Financial Assistance for the State of Uttarakhand:

*      Overall all Uttarakhand will get roughly Rs. 195 crore from the Ministry of Tourism this year.

Two new campaigns launched.

*      India Tourism launched two new campaigns:
*      an International Campaign called ‘Find What You Seek’ and a Domestic Campaign called ‘Go Beyond’.
*       These campaigns were launched at the recently concluded “World Travel Market 2012” which was held at London.
*      The launch of these campaigns reflects a very important paradigm shift in our strategy to promote India within the country and abroad.
*       The ‘Go Beyond’ campaign focuses on promoting lesser known destinations to domestic as well as international tourists.

Campaign Clean India:

*      objective to increase tourist arrivals to the country and to improve quality of services and provide a hygienic environment in and around tourist destinations across the country.
*      On the request from the Tourism Minister, the Oil & Natural Gas Commission (ONGC) has agreed to adopt and upkeep the environs of Taj Mahal Complex including up gradation of tourist facilities in the monument.
*      The ONGC will directly fund the aforesaid works covered under the Clean India Campaign to Archaeological Survey of India.

777 days of the Indian Himalayan Campaign

*      The idea is to remind the world that 73% of the Himalayas are in India. 
*      The main motive is to attract tourists during the Indian summer traditionally considered an off-season for India.
*       This is being done to boost hotel occupancy not only in the Himalayas but also in the towns where the air and rail heads for the Himalayas are located.
*      50% concession has been announced on the climbing fee for climbing these mountains.

Virtual Walking Tours:

*      India has become the first country in the world to give free walking tours.  At present they are available for six towns.  Software for another three cities is ready.  Within two years every Indian state will have one walking tour.
*      360° Tours:  These have been created for almost 100 Indian cities already.  The target is 1,000 cities mainly visited by foreign and domestic tourists.
*      Revamping of Incredibleindia.org website to help the tourism sector:

          Travel Planner:

*      Google has created a Travel Planner for 200 odd Indian destinations. 
*      India is the only country in the world right now to have a Travel Planner.  It has been made by Google.  In the past, Google made a planner for Brazil also.  However, that planner is no longer functioning.
*      By clicking a few important details of what you are looking for India, you could get a video, several pictures, 360° views and all the relevant information about that particular place.

Creation of photo bank:

*      In partnership with M/s. Google, Ministry of Tourism has created a photo bank of more than 2,000 photos about India.

Creation of bank of videos:

*      Through a collaboration with Pixel, the Ministry of Tourism has created a small bank of videos about India; within few months we should have at least three videos about three every important destinations/monuments in India.

Sound and Light Shows:

*      India is the only country to put its sound and light shows on Youtube in Dolby and stereophonic sound.

                      Participation in travel shows

*      fairs and exhibitions including IMEX-America 2013 in Las Vegas; and IT & CMA (Thailand).

                      Road Shows


          Food Festival



*      India Joined Global Leaders for Tourism Campaign
*      25th Joint Meeting of UNWTO Commissions for South Asia, East Asia and the Pacific and UNWTO Conference on Sustainable Tourism Development
*      1st Joint Working Group Meeting on Tourism Cooperation between India and Ukraine
*      20th session of the UNWTO General Assembly
*      1st Tourism Working Group Meeting of the BIMSTEC

Achievements of The Department of Space During 2013

V.Narayansami Inaugurates ISRO Navigation Centre near Bengaluru 

*      The ISRO Navigation Centre (INC), established at Indian Deep Space Network (IDSN) complex at Byalalu, about 40 km from Bangalore, was inaugurated on May 28, 201) by Mr. V. Narayanasamy, Minister of State in the Prime Minister’s Office, Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions.
*      INC is an important element of the Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS), an independent navigation satellite system being developed by India. 

GSAT-15 communication satellite and launch services 

*      The building of the GSAT-15 is part of the Indian Research Organisation’s (ISRO`s) efforts towards in-orbit spare capacity to meet contingency and to protect the services of existing users.
*      The satellite will provide required redundant capacity, will augment capacity in the Ku band, and shall provide in-orbit redundant requirement of safety of life operations benefitting civil aviation services in the country.
*      Nine operational INSAT/GSAT satellites are currently providing different frequency bands to nearly 195 transponders.
*       The GSAT-15 satellite will cover the entire Indian mainland.
*      The satellite will be similar to the GSAT-8. 

GSAT-16 communication satellite and launch services 

*      The project will meet contingency requirements, protect services of existing users and will augment and support existing telecommunication, television, VSAT and other satellite based services in the country.
*       Nine operational INSAT/GSAT satellites are currently providing different frequency bands to nearly 195 transponders.
*      The satellite shall be similar to the GSAT-10. 

PROF. Satish Dhawan Endowed Fellowship Established at California Institute of Technology

India’s Advanced Weather Satellite INSAT-3d Successfully Launched 

*      India’s Weather Satellite INSAT-3D, carrying advanced weather monitoring payloads, was today launched successfully by Ariane-5 (VA214) launch vehicle from Kourou, French Guiana on 26 July, 2013.

ISRO Successfully Launched India’s First Navigation Satellite IRNSS-1A 

*      ISRO’s Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle, PSLV-C22, was successfully launched IRNSS-1A, the first satellite in the Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS),
*      This is the twenty third consecutively successful mission of PSLV.
*       The ‘XL’ configuration of PSLV was used for the mission.
*       Previously, the same configuration of the vehicle was used thrice to launch Chandrayaan-1, GSAT-12 and RISAT-1 satellites. 

India’s Advanced Communication Satellite GSAT-7 Launched Successfully 

*      India’s advanced multi-band communication satellite, GSAT-7, was successfully been launched at 0200 hrs on August 30, 2013) by the Ariane-5 launch vehicle of Arianespace from Kourou, French Guiana.
*      Ariane-5 precisely placed GSAT-7 into the intended Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit (GTO) after a flight of 34 minutes 25 seconds duration

. INSAT-3D Satellite Successfully Placed in Geosynchronous Orbit  

*      India’s advanced weather satellite INSAT-3D, launched in the early hours of July 26, 2013 from Kourou, French Guyana, was successfully placed in Geosynchronous orbit after three orbit raising manoeuvres commanded from ISRO`s Master Control Facility at Hassan. On 1st August 2013. 

GSAT-7 Transponders Successfully Switched on 

GSAT-7 Satellite Placed in Geosynchronous Orbit 

Realization of Second Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB) at Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Sriharikota (SDSC-SHAR) 

*      The Second Vehicle Assembly Building is to  provide enhanced launch frequency of PSLV and GSLV by facilitating parallel integration operations.
*      It will also provide redundancy to existing Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB) for integration of GSLV MK-III and also as a prime integration facility for third launch pad and future general launch vehicles. 

Successful Launching of Mars Orbitor Mission

*      ISRO successfully launched its Mars Orbitor Mission on 5th November 2013 from its Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Sriharikota.                  

Achievements of Ministry of Defence During the Year 2013

Reaching out to the People in Distress

*      the Armed Forces were called by the state Government of these two states for rescuing its citizens and tourists from some of the most dangerous terrains devastated by floods & landslides
*      The troops from Central Command of the Army launched the biggest rescue and relief operation ‘Rahat’ in collaboration with ITBP, BRO and National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) on June 17.
Agni –V: India reiterated its expertise in high end missile technology when the second test flight of over 5000 Km Intermediate Range Ballistic Missile (IRBM) Agni-V proved successful on 15th September.
*      These include the composite rocket motor, state-of-the-art avionics, 5th generation on-board computer distributed architecture, highly accurate laser Gyro-based Inertial Navigation System (RINS), reliable redundant micro-navigation system and the re-entry kit shield that withstands temperature of more than 4000 degrees Celsius ensuring that avionics function smoothly by maintaining an inside temperature less than 50 degrees Celsius.
*      After successful test firing of Agni-V, DRDO now aims for 10,000 Km range Inter –Continental Ballistic Missile (ICBM), which according to its Chief would be preceded by above 6000  Km range Agni-VI to be launched soon.
*      In the meantime the training and user trials of Agni-II, Agni-III and Agni-IV of varying ranges as well as supersonic 300 Km range BrahMos and Prithvi–II have been successfully accomplished in the year.
*       All these missiles which were tested by the users, the Strategic Forces Command of Indian Army, in the presence of scientists and engineers of DRDO and other collaborating laboratories.
 LCA programme finally out of woods: The much awaited and long-delayed indigenous Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) project for the Indian Air Force undertaken by the Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd. (HAL) with its tech partner DRDO finally will see the light of the day, as its initial operational clearance-II is scheduled on 20th December to be held at HAL, Bangalore.
*      The LCA ‘Tejas’, a fourth generation fighter aircraft is meant to meet the versatile and stringent requirements of the Indian Air Force as its front-line multi mission aircraft.
*      Besides developing the fighter version, Aeronautics Development Agency (ADA), the main lab for DRDO incharge of designing and making this metal bird, is also now fully engaged in developing LCA Trainer for IAF and LCA Navy Trainer.  
*      The weaponisation programme, the focus of the current IOC phase of LAC attained a significant milestone by the successful and flawless firing of the air-to-air close combat missile, weapon carriage and release trials. Recently, initial block of flight testing of LCA Naval variant (NP-1) has been successfully completed. Successful Night Flying of LCA has been yet another achievement.
*      Thus the programme is moving towards certification leading to Final Operational Clearance (FOC), which is expected towards the end of next year.
INS Vikrant Launched: India launched its first indigenous aircraft carrier INS Vikrant on August 12 at Kochi marking the end of Phase-I (IAC-I) of the project.
*      The imposing ramp of the 37,500 tonner Short Take Off But Assisted Recovery (STOBAR) carrier boasted indigenous design and built capabilities of the country.
Atomic Reactor of ‘Arihant’ went critical: In adding another feather to its crown of superior state-of-the-art nuclear technology, Indian defence scientists and technologists successfully activated the atomic reactor on board INS Arihant in early August.
*      The next major milestone would be when Arihant begins its trials, which has been planned for September 2014. The nuclear submarine will go for extensive trials before it becomes operational with the Indian Navy.
INS Vikramaditya: The Carrier, in its previous avtar as Admiral Gorshkov, can carry over 30 combat aircraft/helicopters and has the staying power of operating nearly 45 days in high seas with its 1600 crew & officers.
*      It is equipped with long range Air Surveillance Radars, Advanced electronic warfare suite capable of maintaining a surveillance bubble of over 500 Kms around it. The deadly Mig -29K deep penetration striker aircraft, Kamov-31, Sea Harriers and ALH Dhruv helicopters comprise its air element.
*       The ship is also equipped with the state-of-the-art launch and recovery system along with aids to enable smooth and efficient operation of sea-borne aircraft.
C-17 Globemaster III
Giving impetus to the long standing strategic airlift of the Indian Air Force, the Boeing C-17 Globemaster III was formally inducted into the IAF on 02 September at Hindon Airbase near Delhi.
*      Four of the C-17 have been already delivered to the IAF and the fifth aircraft joined the fleet in November.
Pilatus PC 7 MK II Basic Trainer Inducted
The IAF’s premier flying Academy located at Dundigal, Hyderabad witnessed the unveiling of Pilatus PC7MKII basic trainer aircraft, which heralded a new era in imparting high quality flying training to budding pilots ensuring proficiency in handling more sophisticated aircraft.
Boeing P-8I Arrives at INS Rajali
The first of the three Boeing P-8I aircraft for the Indian Navy arrived at INS Rajali, Arakonam on 15th May. The P-8I aircraft based on the Boeing 737-800(NG) airframes is equipped with an array of sensors for maritime reconnaissance, anti-submarine operations and for electronic intelligence missions. The aircraft has drawn its lethality from its arsenal of highly potent Anti-Surface and Anti-Submarine weapons.
Advanced Jet Trainers (AJT) inducted
The Indian Navy inducted the first fully Indian manufactured Hawk Advanced Jet Trainer (AJT) at INS Dega, Vishakhapatnam on 06 November.
ALH–Dhruv Squadron Commissioned
            The first Advanced Light Helicopter (Dhruv) Squadron was commissioned into the Navy at Kochi on 12 November.
Mig -29K Squadron Commissioned
 INAS 303, the first Mig 29K squadron was commissioned on 11th May 2013 by the Defence Minister Shri AK Antony at INSA Hansa, Goa. Mig-29K, arguably one of the best in the subcontinent today is equipped with high-end avionics completed with anti-aircraft beyond visual range missiles, guided anti-ship missile and smart guided bombs and rockets.
INS Sarayu Commissioned
            INS Sarayu, the lead ship of the indigenous Naval Offshore Patrol Vessel (NOPV) Project was commissioned on 21 January. Aimed at meeting the increasing ocean surveillance and patrolling requirements of the Indian Navy, the primary role of the ship is to undertake EEZ surveillance, anti-piracy patrols, fleet support operations and provide maritime security to offshore assets and carry out escort operations for high value assets.
INS Trikand Commissioned
INS Trikand, the last of the three ‘follow on Talwar class’ frigates was commissioned into the Indian Navy at Kaliningrad, Russia on 29 June. It carries a state-of-the-art combat suite which includes the supersonic BrahMos Missile system, advanced surface-to-air missile, upgraded A190 medium range gun, Electro-optical 30mm close-in weapon system and Anti-submarine weapons and an advanced electronic warfare system. Her sister ships INS Teg and INS Tarkash were commissioned last year.
IAF- launches its 3G WCDMA Cellular Network Project
            With this project IAF has taken a quantum leap forward to their quest to provide mobile and secure entry-point connectivity to the air warriors deployed across the length and breadth of the country as it will facilitate real time exchange of information in an ever dynamic operational environment.
International Co-operation through Exercises & Defence Co-op. Talks
*      India-China joint exercises Hand-in-Hand 2013 conducted in Chengdu Province of China culminated on 13 Nov.
*      This battalion level exercise practiced the joint operations on Cordon & Search in international scenario.
*       Exercise ‘Ajeya Warrior’, a four week Indo-UK joint military exercise, also aimed at enhancing counter terrorism skills.
*      In October Indian and Russian armies conducted a joint exercise, Indra, at Mahajan field firing range in Thar Desert of Rajasthan.
*      It also saw a joint Indo-Russian command planning. A joint exercise between India and the French armies was organised from September 9-20 in the French Alps at Grenoble.
*       an Indo-Nepal battalion level joint military exercise, Surya Kiran-V was conducted at Pithoragarh in Uttarakhand from 23 September - 06 October.
*      In a bid to further strengthen the existing Indo-French relationship, a joint exercise between India and the French Army called ‘Shakti – 2013’ was organised from 9 – 20 September at Jodhpur which is the second joint military exercise between the two countries.
*      This platoon level exercise’s theme was on counter-insurgency operations in high altitude mountainous terrain under the UN Charter, thus emphasizing the shared concern of both countries about global terrorism.
Record Exercises with Foreign Navies
*      CORPAT – These Co-ordinated Patrols (CORPAT) with maritime neighbours of India not only strengthened naval co-operation with our neighbours but also helped in developing trust and confidence among participant countries. 
*      First India –Myanmar Navy Co-ordinated Patrol in March 13 with the aim of flushing out extremists operating from Myanmar soil and Navy-to-Navy understanding was successfully conducted.
*      Indo-Thai bilateral naval exercise in April and November.
*      India-Indonesia bilateral naval exercise in May and September.
*      India-RSN (Republic of Singapore Navy) exercise SIMBEX in May.
*      Bilateral naval exercise ‘Naseem Al Bahar’ between India and Royal Navy of Oman on 11 September.
*      Indo-UK exercise ‘Konkan’ in October.
*      Indo-US naval exercise ‘Malabar’ in November.
*      India-Sri Lankan Navy exercise ‘SLINEX’ in November.
*      Naval exercise between India and Japan Maritime Self Defence Forces in December.
*      India-Brazil-South Africa Maritime Exercise ‘IBSA mar’ was conducted among Indian, Brazilian and South African Navies in the IOR. The exercise is the maritime element of the regional co-operation initiative among these three countries.
Exercise on the anvil
      The 13th Meeting of India-Russia Inter-Governmental Commission on Military and Technical Co-operation (IRIGC-MTC) was held at Moscow in November
*      the two countries will hold joint Air-Force level exercises, for the first time besides a joint Navy exercise in the Peter the Great Bay in the Sea of Japan, both in 2014.
Developing Strategic Partnership
Working in tune with its ‘Look East Policy’, India has started forging strategic partnership with countries of Far East and ASEAN.
*      In this context, India’s willingness to co-operate with Vietnam Republic in helping it exploring oil from the South China Sea is significant.
*      Similarly its relations with Japan, South Korea, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, Maldives, Nepal and Afghanistan is steadily growing through bi-lateral exercises and fruitful defence co-operation talks in the form of defence exchanges, training and other areas.
*      India’s bilateral defence ties with US, UK, France, Turkey, Australia, Brazil, South Africa, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Iran, Germany, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Israel, Oman etc. is growing over the years.
*      Indo-French High Committee on Defence Co-operation which met in October this year decided to further strength the ties in different fields which include joint research & development in high technology and transfer of technology, defence equipment collaboration, training and close navy-to-navy interaction in matters like joint exercises and defence exchanges.
Coastal Security Initiatives
Drawing lessons from 26/11 terrorist attacks on Mumbai in 2008, the Govt. took a number of security measures to close the gaps in India’s vast coastline and strengthen the coastal security apparatus in a planned manner by involving all stakeholders in this endeavour.
*      India has already a chain of 36 radars along the Maharashtra, Gujarat and Kerala coast.
Welfare of Jawans & Ex-Servicemen
For soldiers deployed in high altitude areas, warm clothings, special shoes and attractive monthly compensatory allowances have been provided. To protect the officers, jawans and other ranks posted in very high altitudes from mental and physical fatigue, liberal leave facilities as well as rotation of personnel at regular intervals have been given high priority.
1.      To give further encouragement to promote indigenisation and developing Indian defence industrial base in the country, the Government promulgated amended Defence Procurement Procedure 2013 on 01 June, where a number of concessions and priorities have been given to ‘Buy Indian’ and ‘Buy and Make’  (Indian) categories, besides bringing further clarity in the definition of the Indigenous Content and simplifying the Buy and Make (Indian) process. Other significant changes include incorporation of the new offset policy guidelines which were promulgated in August 2012 and revision of the chapter on Ship-building which had been introduced in the DPP 2011. The Ministry has also undertaken the exercise of further simplification of the Make procedures and revision of the Fast Track Procedures which is likely to be completed in the near future.  
2.      Indian Air Force formally bade farewell to its Mig-21 (FL) fleet, after the fleet’s glorious service to the nation for more than thirty years, in December this year. Their place will be filed up by the LCA fighter version in near future.
3.      India signed the much awaited Border Defence Cooperation Agreement (BDC) with China during the Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh’s visit to China in October. The agreement is expected to bring in a relatively peaceful and intrusion free LAC in the northern sector. The agreement lays out a protocol to prevent incidents like intrusion, when Chinese troops came and pitched tents inside Indian territories in August/September.
4.      On July 02, 2013, India unveiled the much awaited National Cyber Security Policy to create a secure cyber eco-system in the country. 
5.      Indian Coast Guard Ship ‘Rajdoot’, the sixth in the series of light Inshore Patrol Vessels (IPVs) designed and built by M/s Garden Reach Shipbuilders & Engineers (GRSE), Kolkata was commissioned at Kolkata in May 2013.
6.      The Naresh Chandra Task Force constituted by the Govt. on national security and higher defence management submitted its recommendations, where among others, it has recommended to create the post of Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) in the Indian Armed Forces.
7.      The first NCC National Games was held in Delhi in November where 1900 boys and girls athletes from 17 NCC directorates, from all the States and Union Territories took part. The eight day long Games was inaugurated by the DG, NCC Lt. Gen P.S. Bhalla amidst much grandeur and fanfare.
8.      The foundation stone for India’s first National Defence University (INDU) was laid by the Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh in Binola, near Gurgaon in May 23, 2013 in the presence of high dignitaries including the Defence Minister.
9.      INAS ‘HANSA’ in Goa celebrated its diamond jubilee on 11th May, 2013.
10.  First Passing Out Parade at the newly established Indian Naval Academy at Ezhimala in Kerala was held on 25th May, 2013.
11.  Indian Coast Guard’s Offshore Patrol Vessel (OPV) ICGS ‘VAIBHAV’ was commissioned on May 21, 2013.
12.  Defence Minister Shri AK Antony dedicated to the Nation the new Air Force Station at Thanjavur in Tamil Nadu on 27th May 2013 where a special runway has been made for the operation of Su-30 MK-I fighter aircraft.
13.  Defence Minister visited Maldives in April 2013.
14.  Defence Minister visited Myanmar on January 21, 2013.
15.  Commissioning of Indian Coast Guard Ship Rajkamal was held in 08 January 2013.
16.  Govt. orders a CBI probe into Augusta Westland Contract for 12 VVIP Helicopters on 12 February 2013.
17.  The 9th edition of Asia’s biggest air show ‘Aero-India’ -2013 took place in Bangalore in February 2013, where 44 countries took part. Defence Minister Shri AK Antony inaugurated this mega event where in the Air show vintage Tiger Moth aircraft made its flight appearance after a gap of 22 years.
18.  HAL formally handed over to Army the weaponised edition of ALH-Dhruv as ‘ALH MK-IV Rudra’ on 08 February 2013 at Bangalore.
19.  Commissioning of Indian Coast Guard Ship ‘Rajratan’ held on 11 February 2013.
20.  Chinese Defence Minister with a delegation visited India on 22nd March 2013 and India-China Talks on Defence co-operation held in Delhi.
21.  Indian Navy concludes theatre level exercise Tropex-13 on 02 March 2013.

Achievements of The Ministry Of Science & Technology During 2013

PM Unveils New Science, Technology and Innovation Policy at Centenary Session of Indian Science Congress

*      It aims to bring all the benefits of Science, Technology & Innovation to the national development and sustainable and more inclusive growth. It seeks the right sizing of the gross expenditure on research and development by encouraging and incentivizing private sector participation in R & D, technology and innovation activities.
*      The policy also sought to trigger an ecosystem for innovative abilities to flourish by leveraging partnerships among diverse stakeholders and by encouraging and facilitating enterprises to invest in innovations.
*       It also seeks to bring in mechanisms for achieving gender parity in STI activities and gaining global competitiveness in select technological areas through international cooperation and alliances.
*      The policy goal is to accelerate the pace of discovery, diffusion and delivery of science led solutions for serving theaspirational goals of India for faster, sustainable and inclusive growth.   A Strong and viable Science, Research and Innovation system for High Technology led path for India (SRISHTI) are the goal for the STI policy.

CSIR-OSDD Collaborates with the Royal Society of Chemistry  in  “Advancing Cheminformatics for Novel Drugs” 

*      In pursuit of common aims and to raise awareness of the importance of Cheminformatics to accelerate the discovery of novel therapies for neglected diseases like TB and Malaria, the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), which provides scientific and industrial R&D that maximises the economic, environmental and societal benefits for the people of India today signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between its Open Source Drug Discovery (OSDD) initiative and the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC), the largest European organisation for advancing chemical sciences in its headquarter
*      The MoU, spanning three years, aims to address the objective of finding novel, faster-acting, and more effective regimens for TB and Malaria by advancing the discipline of Cheminformatics.

Measures for High Level Research Promote Science and Technology

*      Government has taken several measures to promote high level research in science and technology in Indian Universities and Institutes. Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) has engaged in high end research and has made significant contributions in many fields including aerospace, health care drugs & pharmaceuticals, food & food processing, energy etc. Department of Biotechnology (DBT) has implemented several integrated research programmes related to applications of biotechnology in agriculture, health care, environment and industrial development.
*      The infrastructural support programmes of DST such as Fund for Infrastructure Strengthening of S&T (FIST) and Promotion of University Research and Scientific Excellence (PURSE), Consolidation of University Research, Innovation and Excellence (CURIE) for women only universities, special packages for regional balancing of R&D infrastructure ( for North East, J&K, Bihar etc) have helped several universities and institutes to augment their research capability and engage in high end research .

DBT Announces Phase III Clinical Trial Results of Rotavirus Vaccine Developed in India Say Vaccine Demonstrates Strong Efficacy 

*      The clinical study demonstrates for the first time that the India-developed rotavirus vaccine ROTAVAC in collaboration with Bharat Biotech under the Public-Private Partnership mode is efficacious in preventing severe rotavirus diarrhoea in low-resource settings in India.
*      ROTAVAC significantly reduced severe rotavirus diarrhoea by more than half—56 percent during the first year of life, with protection continuing into the second year of life. Moreover, the vaccine also showed impact against severe diarrhoea of any cause.

Branch Laboratory of CSIR-IIIM at Srinagar Re-Dedicated to the Nation 

DST-CII White Paper on Stimulation of Private Sector’s Investment Into R&D Developed by a Joint Committee of Industry & Government 

*      Speaking on the occasion Shri Jaipal Reddy said business enterprises are one of the main source of innovation. They play a significant role in funding and performing R&D in most countries and, more than ever, governments seek to increase business investment in R&D and innovation. Global competition has led countries to seek to boost the innovative capacity of the business sector. 

*      The minister said Government of India has laid high emphasis on attracting investment of private sector into R&D to match public investments (that is 1% of GDP each by Government and Industry) before the end of 12th Five year plan. The minister referred Prime Ministers’ appeal to the Private Sector to invest into R&D and match the public investments into R&D in this regard.
*      He said Science Technology and Innovation Policy 2013 enunciated by the Prime Minister during the Indian Science Congress this year also gives emphasis on attracting private sector investment in R&D.
*       The minister further called upon the private sector to work together with public sector in PPP mode for the public good and happiness of the people of India. 

Ministry of Science & Technology, Govt. of India And Riken, Japan Signs MoU to Launch Joint Research Initiatives 

*      The cooperation will facilitate exchange and foster collaborations between Japan and India, in these fields. They extend a long history of collaboration between India and Japan, two powerhouses of Asian research and innovation. 

Ministry of Science & Technology Launches E-Management of Inspire Award Scheme 

*      The Ministry of Science & Technology has launched its new project of E-MIAS for the future Inspire Awards. It was launched during the ongoing 3rd  National level Exhibition and Project Competitions (NLEPC) being held under the INSPIRE Awards 
What is E-MIAS
Under the INSPIRE Award Scheme, large number of nominations, running into lakhs, have to be processed for selection of the students for INSPIRE Award.  DST plans to e-manage the entire INSPIRE Award Scheme by using State-of-Art latest Information Technology which would enable e-filing of nominations by the schools across the country, its processing by the District and State authorities as well as DST in accordance with the norms of the scheme, transmission of data of selected students to the banks, credit of Award amount to the bank accounts of selected Awardees (wherever notified) or preparation of INSPIRE Award Warrants by the bank and their dispatch to the selected Awardees and all such related actitivities

Year End Review for the Department of Higher Education, Ministry of Human Resource Development

*      Rashtriya Uchchatar Shiksha Abhiyan (RUSA) is a flagship programme that has been launched with an outlay of Rs. 25000 crores under the XII Plan, ending 2017. The programme is aimed at strengthening and reforming State Higher Education. Under this scheme, 278 new universities will be set up.
*      A Single Common Entrance Test for engineering and management programmes has been implemented so as to reduce the stress of several admission tests.
*      Under the scheme, full interest subsidy is provided during the period of moratorium
*      A new National Mission on Teachers and Teaching (NMTT) is being launched to address the shortage of faculty, training and capacity building of teachers.
*      The University Grants Commission (UGC) has made accreditation of universities and colleges (other than technical institutions) mandatory so as to ensure and enhance their quality.

Ministry of Health and Family Welfare


1)      Infant Mortality Rate has come down to 42 in 2012 from 58 per 1000 live births in the year 2005.
2)      Maternal Mortality Ratio has declined from 301 per 100,000 live births in 2001-03 to 254 in 2004-06 and further declined to 212 in 2007-09 as per RGI-SRS data. The pace of decline has shown an increasing trend from 4.1% annual rate of decline during 2001-03 to 5.5% in 2004-06 and further to 5.8% in 2007-09.
3)      Total Fertility Rate has come down to 2.4 in 2011 from 2.9 in 2005.
4)      Under the Universal Immunization Programme (UIP) 61% of children aged12-24 months in India are fully immunized (CES 2009) against seven vaccine preventable diseases i.e. Diphtheria, Pertussis, Tetanus, Polio, Measles, severe form of Childhood Tuberculosis and Hepatitis B.
5)      Polio: WHO on 24th February 2012 removed India from the list of countries with active endemic wild polio virus transmission. The last polio case in the country was reported from Howrah district of West Bengal with date of onset 13th January 2011.  India completed 35 months (as on 18th Dec, 2013) without any polio case which is a remarkable achievement, globally acknowledged.
6)      Government of India declared 2012-13 as Year of “Intensification of Routine Immunization (IRI). As a part the strategy Special Immunization weeks were carried out in the low coverage pockets in the year 2012 -13 and more than 173 lakh doses of various antigens have been administered. Special Immunization weeks have been continued to observe in 2013-14 (April, June, July and August 2013) in 31states/UTs in high risk pockets as identified under polio programme. More than 98.11 lakh UIP doses of various antigens administered during these weeks. Monitoring data indicated that nearly 15% of all vaccinated children in the high priority states received the vaccine for the first time.
7)      Japanese encephalitis vaccination program started in 2006 in endemic areas of JE with strategy to cover all children of 1yr-15 years of age in mass vaccination drive (campaign mode) and then integrate JE vaccine into routine immunization program between 16-24 months of age with booster dose of DPT vaccine. JE vaccination drive is being carried out in 113 districts in 15 states. In addition, there is a plan to cover another 64 districts in next 2 years.


1.            National Urban Health Mission
*      to meet health care needs of the urban population with the focus on urban poor, by making available to them essential primary health care services and reducing their out of pocket expenses for treatment.
*      NUHM will cover all State capitals, district headquarters and cities/towns with a population of more than 50000.
*       It will primarily focus on slum dwellers and other marginalized groups like rickshaw pullers, street vendors, railway and bus station coolies, homeless people, street children, construction site workers. 
2.            Rashtriya Bal Swasthya Karyakram (RBSK)
*      is a new initiative launched in February, 2013 which includes provision for Child Health Screening and Early Intervention Services through early detection and management of 4 Ds i.e Defects at birth, Diseases, Deficiencies, Development delays including disability.
*      An estimated 27 crore children in the age group of zero to eighteen years are expected to be covered across the country in a phased manner. 
3.      New vaccines have been introduced - Hepatitis B vaccine and second dose of measles vaccine are now part of the Universal Immunization Programme. In 2011-12, Hepatitis B vaccine has been expanded in the entire country.

4.      Pentavalent, a combination vaccine, which includes DPT + Hep-B + Hib has been introduced in eight states: Kerala, Tamil Nadu in December 2011 and Puducherry, Goa, Haryana, Gujarat, Karnataka and J & K in 2012-13. This ensures complete immunization against five diseases and also reduces the chances of an Adverse Event Following Immunization due to less injection load.

5.      Government of India earlier provided only one JE dose and now has introduced two doses of JE vaccine under Routine Immunization with first dose at 9-12 months and 2nd dose at 16-24 months w.e.f 1st April 2013.

6.      Maternal and Neonatal Tetanus Elimination (MNTE): Government of India with support of national and international agencies (WHO, UNICEF, others) Maternal and Neonatal Tetanus (MNTE) validated in 18 states (2005-2013) the most recent states to have been validated are Uttarakhand, Delhi and Mizoram.

7.      Government of India along with the 11 SEARO countries and all partners has resolved to eliminate Measles and control Rubella in India and the South East Asian Region of WHO by the end of 2020.
8.      National cold chain management information system: A web enabled National Cold chain management information system (NCCMIS) developed in 2011-13 to track the status of cold chain equipment at the country level. It is aimed to capture real time data of functionality of cold chain equipment at all levels across the country. All states are uploading the data.
9.      National Training Package for Facility Based Newborn Care has been developed with participation of national neonatal experts in the country. This package will improve the cognitive knowledge and build psychomotor skills of the medical officers and staff nurses posted in these units to provide quality newborn care. The training includes 4 day class room training and 14 day observership training in smaller batches.
10.  For management of children with Severe Acute Malnutrition, 872 Nutrition Rehabilitation Centres have been operationalized in the country till December 2013. Training Package for Facility Based Management of Children with Severe Acute Malnutrition has been shared with the States in 2013.
11.  Home Based Newborn Care up to 42 days of life has been implemented through ASHAs. 23 states namely Bihar , Chhattisgarh , Jharkhand , Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Sikkim, Tripura, Gujarat, Haryana , Karnataka , Maharashtra , Punjab , West Bengal , Puducherry have already implemented HBNC and remaining states are in process to implementing the same.
12.  Establishment of Newborn care corners (NBCC) at delivery points and training of health care providers in NSSK for effective essential newborn care is a key component of the newborn continuum of care. A total of 13,653 NBCCs have been established in the country and 124,352 health personnel trained in NSSK by December 2013.
13.  Special New Born Care Units (SNCUs) at FRUs/DH and Newborn Stabilisation Units (NBSUs) have been established to provide care to sick, low birth weight and preterm newborns. By December 2013, 507 SNCUs and 1737 NBSUs have been made functional in the country.
14.  Promotion of early initiation of breast feeding (within one hour of delivery) , exclusive breast feeding till 6 months and timely complementary feeding with continued breast feeding is emphasized under the infant and young child feeding programme. A Guideline for Enhancing Optimal Infant and Young Child feeding Practices-2013 has been published and shared with the states in 2013.
15.  Weekly Iron and Folic Acid Supplementation (WIFS) Programme – (2012-13): To meet the challenge of high prevalence and incidence of anaemia amongst adolescent girls and boys, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has launched the Weekly Iron and Folic Acid Supplementation (WIFS) Programme for 10-19 years adolescent population. Till date the programme has been launched in 31 states/UTs. Total number of beneficiaries covered under this programme, including both in-school and out of school is about 3 crore.
16.  National Iron + Initiative (2012-13): The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on 7th Feb 2013 has launched National Iron + Initiative for prevention and treatment of Iron Deficiency Anaemia among different age groups. Under this initiative it is envisaged to ensure provision of IFA supplementation and therapeutic management of mild, moderate and severe anaemia in the most vulnerable groups – children (6months- 10 years), adolescents (10-19 years), pregnant and lactating women and women of reproductive age group (15-45 years) through a continuum of care approach.
17.   ‘Child’ and ‘Dhuan’: new Anti-Tobacco health spots for “Tobacco-Free Film Rules” under COTPA were released.  Two spots ‘Mukesh’ and ‘Sponge’ depicting harmful effect of usage of smokeless and smoking forms of tobacco. The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare replaced these spots with two new spots titled ‘Child’ and ‘Dhuan’ effective from 2nd October 2013. These spots have been dubbed in 16 Indian languages for a pan India coverage.
18.  JE Vaccine (JENVAC) launched this year. The vaccine is produced by NIV, ICMR and BharatBiotech. 
19.  Reverse Dot Blot Hybridization (RDB) Thalassemia Diagnostic Kit launched in December, 2013.
20.  The National Teeka Express launched to protect children from life-threatening childhood diseases.

21.  The NTCC got the approval of the 1st National Level Mass media campaign for the year 2013-14. The new spot ‘Tears you Apart’ was aired initially in the government channels and subsequently on the private C & S Channels.

Year End Review-2013 Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances & Pensions.

Lokpal and Lokayuktas Bill         

Salient Features of the Bill 
            The Bill as passed by Parliament provided broadly for the following:
(a)        Establishment of the institution of Lokpal at the Centre and Lokayuktas at the level of the States, thus providing a uniform vigilance and anti-corruption road-map for the nation, both at the Centre and the States. 
(b)        The Lokpal to consist of a Chairperson and a maximum of eight Members, of which fifty percent shall be judicial Members. Fifty per cent of members of Lokpal shall be from amongst SC, ST, OBCs, Minorities and Women. 
(c)        The selection of Chairperson and Members of Lokpal shall be through a Selection Committee consisting of –
·         Prime Minister;
·         Speaker of Lok Sabha;
·         Leader of Opposition in the Lok Sabha;
·         Chief Justice of India or a sitting Supreme Court Judge nominated by CJI;
·         An eminent jurist to be nominated by the President of India
(d)       A Search Committee will assist the Selection Committee in the process of selection.  Fifty per cent of members of the Search Committee shall also be from amongst SC, ST, OBCs, Minorities and Women.
(e)        Prime Minister was brought under the purview of the Lokpal with  subject matter exclusions and specific process for handling complaints against the Prime Minister. 
(f)        Lokpal’s jurisdiction will cover all categories of public servants including Group ‘A’, ‘B’, ‘C’ & ‘D’ officers and employees of Government.  On complaints referred to CVC by Lokpal, CVC will send its report of Preliminary enquiry in respect of Group ‘A’ and ‘B’ officers back to Lokpal for further decision.  With respect to Group ‘C’ and ‘D’ employees, CVC will proceed further in exercise of its own powers under the CVC Act subject to reporting and review by Lokpal.
(g)        All entities receiving donations from foreign source in the context of the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA) in excess of Rs. 10 lakhs per year are brought under the jurisdiction of Lokpal.
(h)        Lokpal will have power of superintendence and direction over any investigation agency including CBI for cases referred to them by Lokpal.  
(i)         A high powered Committee chaired by the Prime Minister will recommend selection of the Director, CBI. 
(j)         Attachment and confiscation of property of public servants acquired by corrupt means, even while prosecution is pending.
(k)        Clear time lines for:-
Ø   Preliminary enquiry – three months extendable by three months.
Ø   Investigation – six months which may be extended by six months at a time.
Ø   Trial – one year extendable by one year and, to achieve this,  special courts to be set up.
(l)         Enhancement of maximum punishment under the Prevention of Corruption Act from seven years to 10 years.  The minimum punishment under sections 7, 8, 9 and 12 of the Prevention of Corruption Act will now be three years and the minimum punishment under section 15 (punishment for attempt) will now be two years.

*      Release of Documentary films on Good Governance Initiatives:            

*      Simplification of Procedure for Payment of Family Pension:

*      Grant of Family Pension to the family of missing employee/pensioner   

Food Processing Sector Witnesses Fast Growth, Rising Exports in Recent Years



*      Ministry of Food Processing Industries (MoFPI) is concerned with formulation and implementation of the policies and plans for the food processing industries within overall national priorities and objectives.
*       In an emerging country like India, where growth with equity is a primary policy thrust, the optimum development of the food processing sector will contribute significantly in tackling several developmental concerns such as disguised unemployment in agriculture, rural poverty, food security, food inflation, improved nutrition, and prevention of wastage of food. 
*      Food Processing Sector is an important segment of the economy, constituting a share of around 9.0 to 10.0 percent of GDP in Agriculture and Manufacturing sector. 
*      FP sector provides employment to around 65 lakh.  According to the latest Annual Survey of Industries for 2010-11, 
*      In terms of labour productivity, at 2004-05 prices, Output per worker in registered units increased from Rs 16.12 lakh to Rs 24.67 lakh (CAGR of 8.9%).
*      The overall exports from India increased by 40.5% in 2010-11 and by 21.8% during 2011-12, and declined by 1.8% in 3012-13, in US $ terms.  The food processing sector registered a growth of 38.1% during 2010-11 and 55.5% during 2011-12.  Export of food products during 2012-13 registered a growth of 14.0% in dollars terms.
*      In terms of value addition, during the last 5 years ending 2011-12, FPI sector has been growing at an Average Annual Growth Rate (AAGR) of around 8.6 % as compared to little less than  4 % in Agriculture and 8 % in  Manufacturing.
*      Government has approved setting up 12 more Mega Food Parks in addition to 30 on-going projects and 75 new Cold Chain Projects in addition to 74 already approved, during the 12th Plan period under the Infrastructure Development scheme of this Ministry. In pursuance to this, the Ministry had accorded in-principle approval to 10 Mega Food Park projects and 68 Cold Chain projects.  EOI for 15 more Cold Chain projects have been issued on 02.12.2013.  The Cold Chain Scheme guidelines have been revised for better implementation of the scheme. 
*      The Government on 27.06.2013 approved the National Mission on Food Processing (NMFP) as a Centrally Sponsored Scheme for the remaining period of 12th Plan with additional components of primary processing centres / collection centres in rural areas, reefer van / refrigerated trucks, modernisation of meat shop and old food parks.  
*      The Ministry has launched its new website which is more investor friendly and also disabled-friendly for visually impaired users.
*      On receipt of representations from the industry about the difficulties faced by them in implementing some of the provisions of Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006 and Regulations a meeting was organized in which representatives of Industry Chambers and Food Processing Industries participated along with Officers from Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI). 
*      In order to attract investment in the food processing sector, the Ministry prepared State Profiles, which contain information about production and productivity of crops and availability of infrastructure in various states for investment in food processing sector.  The State profiles have been circulated to State Governments / UT administrators for ready reference.  An investor’s portal has also been launched to facilitate investment in the food processing sector.
*      The Ministry has been organizing special camps with banks for the cases pending of 11th Plan under the Scheme of Technology Upgradation/ Establishment/ Modernization of Food Processing Industries. This exercise was done for facilitating entrepreneurs and also expediting release of committed liabilities pending on account of these cases.

Achievements of the Ministry of Water Resources During 2013

Bilateral Co-Operation Understanding in Water Resources Development and Management with Government of Rwanda 

*      India and Rawanda singed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on bilateral co-operation in Water Resources Development and Management.
*      13 Children from Across the Country bags Prizes in 3rd National Painting Competition on Water Conservation 
*      Redesigned Website of National Projects Construction Corporation Limited Inaugurated 
*      Union Budget 2013-14 Highlighted Five inland Waterways have been Declared as National Waterways 

Ministry of Water Resources notifies the Final Award of CWDT        

*      India Water Week-2013 organized

Ministry of Water Resources  organized  the “India Water Week-2013 from 8th-12th April, 2013 in New Delhi with the theme “ Efficient Water Management : Challenges and Opportunities”.

*      Policy on Groundwater Exploitation  
   Ministry of Water Resources formulated a Model Bill to regulate and control groundwater development and management in the Country. The same was  circulated by the Ministry to all the States/ Union Territories for enactment.The responsibility to protect ground water from contamination lies primarily with the States concerned.
*      Hydro-Meteorological Data Dissemination Policy (2013) Released

It is in pursuance of the recommendations of the National Water Policy (2012) for placing all hydrological data, other than those classified on national security consideration. It was also circulated amongst related Ministries/Departments. Based on the comments received, the Hydro-meteorological Data Dissemination Policy (2013) has been modified and finalized.
*      Declaration of the Year 2013 as “Water Conservation Year-2013” 

*      Draft National Water Framework Bill, Draft River Basin Management Bill  and Draft National Policy Guidelines released for Water Sharing/Distrution Amongst States for Comments.

*      Approval of Research and  Development programme in water sector for the XII Plan period 

*      Committee Constituted to Understand the Possible Causes of Recent Flood and Land Slides in the State of Uttarakhand and Suggest Remedial Measures 

*      Ground water management and regulation scheme for the XII Plan period

*      Special Committee for Interlinking of Rivers 

*      Continuation of Accelerated Irrigation Benefits Programme and Scheme of National Projects in XII Plan

*      Human Resources Development and Capacity Building Scheme for the XII Plan Period 

  This scheme was intended to propose generating awareness about water use efficiency, conservation and management of water by targeting various stakeholders including general public, school children, agriculturists, industrialists and other water users
*      Constitution of Supervisory Committee on Babhali Barrage

The Committee will comprise one representative from the Central Water Commission who will be the Chairman of the Supervisory Committee and one representative each from the State Governments of Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra, respectively. 

No comments:

Post a Comment