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Last Updated: March 30, 2020

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  • IIT Madras collaborated With two Industry Partners for research projects

    7 days ago
    Indian Institutes of Technology-Madras (IIT-Madras) has partnered with two industry partners namely MagGenome Technologies and BUDDI Health. The partnership aims for research in Artificial Intelligence (AI) and magnetic nanoparticles-based products. Provisions of Partnership: MagGenome Technologies: ♦ MagGenome Technologies is a Chennai-based nano-biotechnology start-up. It focuses on developing magnetic nanoparticles-based technologies for application in life science, chemical, pharmaceutical, and engineering industries. ♦ Under the collaboration, IIT-Madar and MagGenome Technologies will develop magnetic nanoparticles-based products including developing advanced nucleic acid extraction kits.  ♦ It will also focus on many other applications of magnetic nanoparticles for providing solutions in the areas of diagnostics, therapeutics, and environmental remediation. BUDDI Healthcare Technologies: ♦ BUDDI Health is a US-based cloud-based patent-pending deep learning platform for Healthcare. ♦ With BUDDI Healthcare Technologies, IIT-Madras will develop AI-based software products for the Healthcare industry.

    India, Japan signed major rail projects for public, freight transport

    9 days ago
    Japanese government funding agency JICA signed Rs.15,295 crore agreement with the Indian government for three mega rail infrastructure projects.  Aim: The agreement aims to cope up with the increase in freight transport demand in India by constructing new dedicated freight railway system between Delhi and Mumbai. Agreement Highlights: ♦ As per the agreement, JICA has granted Rs.8,553 crore for phase-1 of the Dedicated Freight Corridor; Rs.4,262 crore for Mumbai Trans Harbour Link Project-II and Rs.2,480 crore for the Mumbai Metro Line 3 Project-III. ♦ The project has been scheduled to be completed by ♦ The project will promote comprehensive regional economic development along the freight corridor. Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor (DMIC) initiative is part of the Japanese-Indian collaborative project aimed at comprehensive regional development. ♦ The agreement will provide long-term low-cost loans for development projects to various countries. Background: The loan agreement for the first phase was signed on 31 March 2017, for an amount of Rs.7,912 crore.

    Cabinet approved MoU signed between India and Germany to enhance Railway sector

    12 days ago
    The Union Cabinet led by the PM Narendra Modi apprised a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed between Ministry of Railways, GoI and DB Engineering & Consulting GMBH of Germany. The MoU was signed for technological cooperation in the Railway Sector. The agreement was signed in February 2020. MoU Provisions: ♦ The MoU will freight operations, passenger operations and infrastructure building and management between the countries in the railway sector. ♦ It will enhance the development of a modern, competitive railway organization, IT solutions for railway operations, marketing and sales and administrative purposes. ♦ It will also improve predictive maintenance, private train operations between the two parties. Background: Ministry of Railways have signed several MoUs, Memorandums of Cooperation (MoCs), Administrative Arrangements (AAs) and Joint Declarations of Intent (JDI) for technical cooperation in the rail sector with various foreign Governments and National Railways in several areas including development of world-class stations, high-speed rail, heavy haul operations and modernization of rail infrastructure, speed raising of existing routes, etc.

    APEDA signs MoU with SFAC to boost food clusters

    16 days ago
    Agricultural & Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) has signed MoU with Small Farmers Agribusiness Consortium (SFAC)  The MoU was signed by Neelkamal Darbari, Managing Director SFAC and Paban Kumar Borthakur, Chairman, APEDA. Agri Export Policy announced by the Government of India with Farmers’ Centric Approach suggests developing product-specific clusters in the country to help improving productivity and quality of the varieties of crops with special involvement of Farm Producer Organizations(FPOs).The main aim is to address the obstacles faced by FPOs through organizations like Small Farmers Agribusiness Consortium (SFAC) and State level organizations to expand the FPO network.The main focus to approach to bring synergy with such organizations engaged with them for mutually working together in the development of agriculture and allied sectors and its exports for bringing better value to the stakeholders. APEDA has been in dialog with SFAC for linking of Farmer Producer organizations, farmers’ cooperatives to the export value chain through capacity building, production of the quality products as per the requirement of importing countries, creation of infrastructure, facilitating primary and secondary processing in the clusters and also by linking them to the exporters.

    LLTS, IIT-Kanpur signed MoU to promote research in cybersecurity programs

    19 days ago
    L&T Technology Services Limited (LLTS) signed a multi-year Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur (IIT Kanpur). The MoU aims to collaborate on research in industrial and infrastructure cybersecurity. The MoU was signed by CEO and MD of LTTS, Dr. Keshab Panda, and Deputy Director at IIT Kanpur and Professor Manindra Agarwal in the premises of IIT Kanpur. MoU Provision: ♦ As per the MoU, LTTS and IIT-Kanpur will together set-up a Center of Excellence (CoE) in the IIT-Kanpur campus.  ♦ It will conduct research in the areas of Honeypot, blockchain, intrusion detection systems, malware analysis, vulnerability assessment, and penetration testing, and provide cybersecurity awareness and training programs.  ♦ The MoU will both LTTS access to IIT-Kanpur's cutting-edge testbed for critical infrastructure. ♦ The CoE will be a part of IIT-Kanpur's C3i Center was developed to work on solutions and technologies to protect India's Strategic and Critical Utility Infrastructure. ♦ LTTS' deep-rooted and proven technological expertise combined with the cybersecurity research expertise of the C3i Center will help counter such cyberattacks.

    APEDA, SFAC signed MoU to improve productivity and quality of the varieties of crops

    19 days ago
    Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) has signed MoU with Small Farmers Agribusiness Consortium (SFAC) on 18 March 2020. The MoU was signed by Ms. Neelkamal Darbari, Managing Director SFAC and Mr. Paban Kumar Borthakur, Chairman, APEDA.  MoU provisions: ♦ As per the MoU, SFAC will share a list of all clusters in various states with APEDA for achieving scale and aggregation with export orientation. ♦ APEDA and SFAC will jointly work together to link up the Farm Producer Organizations (FPOs) with the exporters to achieve the goal and double the farmers' income. ♦ Both the organization will work towards capacity development, outreach programs, awareness programs, and workshops of various stakeholders. ♦ APEDA and SFAC will work together to showcase to the Indian and Global Market, the products, technologies, processes, knowledge, and services by the FPO sector stakeholders through a variety of modes as may be identified by them from time to time. ♦ APEDA will facilitate certification of organic produce /areas by the FPCs assisted or identified by SFAC. ♦ The MoU will start an Agri-Business Promotion Unit in the North East and to mentor and handhold the FPOs in North East.

    Finance Ministry notified about its agreement with Brunei

    20 days ago
    Ministry of Finance appraised the Government of India about the agreement between India and the Government of Brunei Darussalam.  Agreement Highlights: ♦ The Agreement will enable the exchange of information, including banking and ownership information, between the two countries for tax purposes.  ♦ The agreement is based on international standards of tax transparency and exchange of information and enables the sharing of information on request and automatic exchange of information.  ♦ The Agreement also provides for representatives of one country to undertake tax examinations in the other country. It provides assistance in the collection of tax claims. ♦ It will also enhance mutual co-operation between the two countries by providing an effective framework for the exchange of information in tax matters in order to curb tax evasion and tax avoidance. Background: The agreement was signed on 28 February 2019 in New Delhi. The agreement was signed for the exchange of information and assistance in collection with respect to taxes.  Note: The Central Government is authorized under section 90 of the Income Tax (IT) Act, 1961, to enter into an agreement with a foreign country or specified territory for exchange of information for the prevention of evasion or avoidance of income-tax chargeable under the Income Tax Act, 1961. Brunei Darussalam: Sultan and Prime Minister: Hassanal Bolkiah Crown Prince and Senior Minister: Al-Muhtadee Billah Capital: Bandar Seri Begawan Currency: Brunei dollar (BND)

    OIL signed agreement with Numaligarh Refinery for crude oil sale

    21 days ago
    India's second-largest national oil explorer Oil India Ltd (OIL), signed an agreement with Numaligarh Refinery for purchase and sale of crude oil for a term of five years. The agreement was signed by the finance directors of the two companies. Agreement: ♦ The Crude Oil Sales Agreement (COSA) will come in effect from 1 April 2020 to 31 March 2025. ♦ The agreement will streamline the sale and purchase transactions of crude oil produced from fields in North East India. Numaligarh Refinery: Owned by: Numaligarh Refinery Limited Location: Morangi, Assam Numaligarh Refinery is a joint venture (JV) between Bharat Petroleum (61.65%), Oil India (26%), and Government of Assam (12.35%).

    GoI, World Bank signs loan agreement on Integrated Project for Source Sustainability and Climate Resilient

    26 days ago
    The World Bank signed an $80 million loan agreement with the Government of India, Government of Himachal Pradesh on 11 March 2020. The aim is to improve water management practices and increase agricultural productivity in selected Gram Panchayats in Himachal Pradesh. The loan from the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) has a final maturity of 14.5 years, including a grace period of 5 years. Highlights: ♦ The Integrated Project for Source Sustainability and Climate Resilient Rain-Fed Agriculture will be implemented in 428 Gram Panchayats in 10 districts in Himachal Pradesh.  ♦ The project includes setting up of hydrological monitoring stations to monitor water quality and quantity. ♦ It is expected that it will benefit over 400,000 smallholder farmers, including women, and pastoral communities. ♦ The project aims to make the best use of all available technologies and resources to increase water-use efficiency. ♦ It will improve upstream water sources in pastures, forests, and grasslands. ♦ The project will enhance the climate resilience of agriculture and its allied activities and also ensure sufficient water is available for sustainable agriculture both in Himachal Pradesh and in downstream states.  About the World Bank: Headquarters: Washington, DC, US Membership: 189 countries (IBRD), 173 countries (IDA) President: David Malpass MD & CFO: Anshula Kant Parent organization: World Bank Group World Bank is a component of the World Bank group. The bank provides loans and grants to poor countries to support infrastructure development and their capital projects.  It constitutes of 5 international organizations, namely: ♦ International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) ♦ the International Development Association (IDA) ♦ International Finance Corporation (IFC) ♦ Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA) ♦ International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) IBRD: Established on: 1944 Membership: 189 countries IBRD offers a number of financial services and products, lends loans to middle-income developing countries.

    Infosys partners with Qualcomm to offer smart cities solutions

    26 days ago
    Software major Infosys partnered with the US-based chipmaker Qualcomm to offer smart cities solutions through Qualcomm's accelerator program. The partnership will provide solutions for smart stadiums, smart venues, and smart event management. Highlights: ♦ The Accelerator program will connect cities, municipalities, state-run agencies, and enterprises with Qualcomm Technologies' ecosystem. This will help deliver efficiencies, cost savings, and access to solutions for smart cities' problems. ♦ The solutions have been built upon Qualcomm's proprietary framework for smart spaces. It offers features for building and resource management, physical assets management, and occupants' safety and security. ♦ The framework uses digital technologies to deliver an enhanced user experience for personal comfort, wellness, collaboration, and convenience. ♦ It will also optimize resources for easy maintenance and improved efficiencies.

    DAY-NULM signs MoU with Amazon for e-marketing of products made by SHGs

    31 days ago
    Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana- National Urban Livelihoods Mission (DAY-NULM) that functions under the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs signed MoU with Amazon for e-marketing of products made by Self Help Groups (SHGs) across the country in urban areas. Provisions: ♦ The partnership aims to provide access to a wider customer base for products made by SHGs and to strengthen the mission of creating sustainable livelihoods in urban areas. ♦ It is expected to unleash the innate entrepreneurial potential of urban women. ♦ The presence of women entrepreneurs on the '' is currently growing, since the inception of its dedicated program Amazon Saheli.  

    India-EU to work together on Integrated Local Energy Systems

    31 days ago
    India and the European Union agreed to work in the Integrated Local Energy System during India's Smart Utility Week 2020. As per the agreement, the countries will work upon clean energy and climate. Highlights: ♦ The partnership will foresee strengthened cooperation in energy research and innovation, especially in renewable energy and its integration in the energy system.  ♦ The collaboration will make energy supply cleaner, more efficient, and affordable to all. ♦ The Indo-EU flagship call is in line with both the European Union's and India's involvement in Mission Innovation (MI). MI is a global initiative of the European Commission and 24 countries. MI committed to reinvigorate and accelerate global clean energy innovation with an aim to make clean energy widely affordable. ♦ It will also give novel solutions encompassing local integration across various energy vectors and increase renewables share in the energy mix and high energy efficiency.

    India signs deal with the US for Air Force One

    31 days ago
    The desi "Air Force One" will be ready to fly the President or Prime Minister by 2021. It is equipped with advanced missile defence measures. India has signed around $190 million to deal with the US for two self-protection suites (SPS).  Air Force One: ♦ The system will be retrofitted on the two custom-built Boeing-777 aircraft, which was earlier acquired for long-haul VVIP travel.  ♦ The system has fully-integrated advanced missile approach warning sensors, defensive electronic warfare systems, infra-red (IR) counter-measures, digital radio frequency jammers, and other such contraptions under the overall SPS. ♦ It has the capability to serve as an airborne command centre to direct military operations during nuclear, chemical, biological (NBC) attacks. ♦ The two extended-range B-777s will also have encrypted satellite communication facilities. ♦ It will replace the almost 30-years-old 747-400 jumbo jets being currently used for VVIP flights.  ♦ The SPS will ensure a robust capability for automated detection and jamming of different kinds of missiles. 

    APEDA signed MoUs with various organizations to implement Agri Export Policy

    33 days ago
    Agricultural and Processed Food Export Development Authority (APEDA) signed MoUs with specialized institutions namely the Indian Institute of Technology Delhi (IITD),  Indian Chamber of Food and Agriculture (ICFA), SGT University, Pearl Academy, and Quality Council of India (QCI) Delhi, on 4 March 2020. The MoU aims to utilize its expertise to work together to boost the activities in the interest of agriculture and allied sectors to bring better value to the stakeholders.  Highlights: ♦ As per the agreement, IITD will cooperate in the areas of technology development for export promotion by APEDA. It will also develop early detection techniques for detecting spoilage of agri-produce to boost Agri exports. It will also identify the cause and suggest low-cost mitigation technology and develop Internet of things (IoT) based technologies in areas like early warning systems, efficient and precision farming related to international food exports. ♦ With the Quality Council of India (QCI), APEDA aims to develop training material on various QCI Certification Schemes such as Product Certification, Inspection, INDGAP certification, IND-HACCP Certification, etc. ♦ ICFA will work with the clusters identified by APEDA to enhance the capabilities of all the stakeholders in the supply chain for higher value realization for exports. It will support agri-startups to scale up their businesses and commercializing their products and conduct capacity development programs for large scale GAP certification in agriculture. ♦ APEDA will develop suitable export worthy varieties of potatoes, groundnut, high TSS onion varieties, Moringa plantation for successful cultivation in Haryana, through a pilot project at SGT University agricultural fields. Pearl Academy, along with APEDA, will develop appropriate media and marketing strategies to promote Agriculture, and Processed food export through Digital Marketing, content creation, and social media support, photoshoots promotion campaigns, etc. Background: APEDA has been focusing on a collaborative approach to bring synergy with number of organizations and institutions having inherent professional and specialized expertise for the development of Agriculture and its export enhancement set under the Agri Export Policy (AEP) announced by GoI.  The Agriculture Export Policy focuses on agriculture export-oriented production, export promotion, better price realization to the farmer, and synchronization within policies and programmes of Government of India. It focuses on "Farmers' Centric Approach" for improved income through value addition at the source itself to help minimize losses across the value chain. The Policy suggests adopting the approach of developing product-specific clusters in different agro-climatic zones of the country to help in dealing with various supply-side issues like soil nutrients management, higher productivity, adoption of a market-oriented variety of crop, use of Good Agriculture Practices, etc. APEDA has been engaged with state governments for the implementation of AEP. The states of Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh, Kerala, Nagaland, Tamil Nadu, Assam, Punjab, Karnataka. Also, the action plans of other states are at different stages of finalization. It has also formed State-level Monitoring Committees under the Chairmanship of State Chief Secretary has been formed in 18 States.

    ICAR, PBRI signs MoU to undertake research work and education

    36 days ago
    Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Hardiwar-based Patanjali Bio Research Institute (PBRI) on 1 March. The MoU aims to undertake research work, training, and education. The MoU was signed by ICAR Director General Trilochan Mohapatra and PBRI CEO Acharya Balkrishna in the presence of Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar. Aim: The MoU aims to foster close interaction in research, technology demonstration, capacity building, seed production, entrepreneurship, and skill development. MoU provisions: ♦ The MoU will provide a new opportunity to include a new arena to work for both organizations. ♦ It is expected to promote organic farming practices across the country. ♦ Specific plans will be developed under the agreement to work on collaborative research programmes in areas of national interest related to sustainable agriculture development that is suitable for different agro-ecologies in India. ♦ The agreement will enable the postgraduate (PG) students of deemed universities and research institutes of ICAR to undertake internships in various areas of specialization with PBRI. ♦ As per the agreement, ICAR will assist PBRI in capacity building, technology demonstration, seed production for scaling up popular varieties developed by ICAR so that it can be transferred among the farming community of the country.

    IAF, Savitribai Phule Pune University signs MoU to establish Chair of Excellence

    36 days ago
    The Indian Air Force (IAF) entered into an academic collaboration and signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Savitribai Phule Pune University. The MoU aimed to establish a 'Chair of Excellence' at the Department of Defence & Strategic Studies.  Chair of Excellence: ♦ The IAF has named it as "Marshal of the Air Force (MIAF) Arjan Singh Chair of Excellence" with an aim to pay tribute to the legend and commemorate the centenary birth year of the MIAF Arjan Singh.  ♦ The Chair will empower the IAF officers to pursue Doctoral Research and higher studies in Defence & Strategic Studies and allied fields. ♦ The chair will facilitate research and higher studies in the area of National Defence and allied fields of Air Force officers.  ♦ It will be inculcating a strategic outlook and building a pool of strategic thinkers. Participants: Delegations including Shri Nitin Karmalkar, Hon'ble Vice-Chancellor of SPPU, Air Marshal Amit Dev AVSM, VSM, Air Officer-in-Charge Personnel, IAF, and Air Vice-Marshal LN Sharma AVSM, Assistant Chief of the Air Staff (Education) and other senior IAF and University officials participated in the meeting.

    India, Myanmar exchanged agreements in various fields

    39 days ago
    India and Myanmar signed several Memorandum of understanding (MoUs) during the State Visit of the President of Myanmar to India from 26-29 February. President Myint's visit comes after the invitation extended by President Ram Nath Kovind. MoUs: 1) MoU was signed on Cooperation for Prevention of Trafficking in Persons; Rescue, Recovery, Repatriation, and Re-Integration of Victims of Trafficking by HE Shri Saurabh Kumar Ambassador of India to Myanmar and HE Moe Kyaw Aung, Ambassador of Myanmar to India 2) An agreement was signed regarding Indian Grant Assistance for Implementation of Quick Impact Projects (QIP) by HE Shri Saurabh Kumar, Ambassador of India to Myanmar and HE Moe Kyaw Aung Ambassador of Myanmar to India. 3) A Project Agreement was signed for construction of an incinerator in Mrauk Oo township hospital, construction of seed storage houses and water supply systems in Gwa township under Rakhine State Development Programme by HE Shri Saurabh Kumar, Ambassador of India to Myanmar and HE Moe Kyaw Aung, Ambassador of Myanmar to India. 4) Project Agreement for distribution of electricity by solar power in five townships of Rakhine State under Rakhine State Development Program was signed by HE Shri Saurabh Kumar, Ambassador of India to Myanmar and HE Moe Kyaw Aung, Ambassador of Myanmar to India. 5) Project Agreement for construction of Kyawlyaung- Ohlphyu road, construction of Kyaung Taung Kyaw Paung road in Buthedaung Township under Rakhine State Development Program was signed by HE Saurabh Kumar, Ambassador of India to Myanmar and HE Moe Kyaw Aung, Ambassador of Myanmar to India. 6) A Project Agreement for construction of pre-schools under the Rakhine State Development Programme was signed by HE Shri Saurabh Kumar, Ambassador of India to Myanmar and HE Moe Kyaw Aung, Ambassador of Myanmar to India. 7) An MoU for Cooperation on Combating Timber Trafficking and Conservation of Tigers and other Wildlife was signed by HE Shri Saurabh Kumar, Ambassador of India to Myanmar and HE Moe Kyaw Aung, Ambassador of Myanmar to India. 8) An MoU between Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas (MoPNG) India and Ministry of Electricity & Energy, Myanmar for cooperation in the field of petroleum products was signed by Shri Sunil Kumar, Joint Secretary Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas, India and U Than Zaw Director-General, Oil & Gas Planning Department, Ministry of Electricity & Energy,    Ambassador of India to Myanmar Shri Saurabh Kumar and Ambassador of Myanmar to India Mr. Moe Kyaw Aung. 9) An MoU between the Ministry of Communications of India and the Ministry of Transport & Communications of Myanmar on cooperation in the field of communication was signed by Mr. Anshu Prakash, Secretary, Department of Telecommunications (DoT), Ministry of Communications and H.E Moe Kyaw Aung, Ambassador of Myanmar.

    India, US signs 2 MoUs and 1 Letter of Cooperation during Trumps State visit to India

    41 days ago
    US President Donald J. Trump along with the First Lady Melania Trump visited India on 24-25 February. During his visit, 3 MoUs and 1 Letter of Cooperation were signed. Agreements: ♦ A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Mental Health between Department of Health and Family Welfare of the Government of the Republic of India and Department of Health and Human Services of the Government of the US. ♦ An MoU was signed on the Safety of Medical Products between Central Drugs Standard Control Organization (CDSCO) within the Directorate General of Health Services of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare of the Republic of India and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) of the Department of Health and Human Services of the United States of America. ♦ An agreement to purchase more than $3 billion of American military equipment ♦ A Letter of Cooperation was signed between India's Indian Oil Corporation Limited (IOCL) and ExxonMobil India LNG Limited and America's Chart Industries Inc.

    MoU signed between NMCG, SPMG-UK, ICT to renovate Ghat at Badrinath

    42 days ago
    A tripartite Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between the National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG), State Program Management Group-Uttarakhand (SPMG-UK) and Indorama Charitable Trust (ICT) in Delhi on 24 February. The MoU was signed by Ashok Kumar Singh, Executive Director (ED), National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG); Rajeev Kshetrapal, Director, Indorama Industries and Uday Raj Singh, Project Director, SPMG, Government of Uttarakhand.  MoU Highlights: ♦ The MoU aims to work together to renovate or develop the Ghat at Badrinath and Ghats and Crematoria at Gangotri in Uttarakhand. ♦ The total cost for the project is Rs.26.64 crore ♦ The Detailed Project Report (DPR) was developed by M/S WAPCOS, a Government of India Enterprise. ♦ The activities under the project will include the construction of Bathing Ghats and Crematoria, repair and modernize the existing Ghats and Crematoria ♦ Providing public amenities on Ghats, Bank erosion protection works, Operation & Maintenance (O&M) for 5 years. Clean Ganga Mission: The Clean Ganga campaign was taken up in Mission Mode since Prime Minister Narendra Modi led Government assumed office in 2014. The Mission is about to be completed but the Namami Ganga Mission is an unending process. Indorama Group provided financing for the project under the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiative.  Badrinath Bathing Ghat: Badrinath Bathing Ghat is located along the bank of river Alaknanda. The sites of Ghat was identified via the local consultation is 2099m2. The total cost of the project will be Rs.10.31 crore. The Operation and Maintenance for the ghat will be for five years. The Development project includes Changing Room, Toilet with bio-digester and reed bed, chhatri, platform,  water spout, signages, horticulture work, railing, etc. The duration of the project construction is 15 months. Gangotri Bathing Ghat and Crematoria: Gangotri Ghat is situated along the bank of river Bhagirathi at Gangotri. The Centre is planning one bathing ghat and one crematoria at Gangotri in a total area of 2170 m2. The total cost of the project is Rs.16.02 crore. The construction work is expected to conclude in 15 months. The development project includes Toilet with bio-digester and reed bed, Changing Room, water spout, chhatri, platform, signages, horticulture work, railing, solar light pole, etc.

    DMRC signs with several government agencies to effectively utilize the groundwater

    46 days ago
    The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) signed up with several government agencies to effectively utilize the groundwater. DMRC will dewater during the construction of five of its underground stations in phase 4. Agreement provisions: ♦ The groundwater will be used to revive a dried lake in North Delhi among others. ♦ DMRC started its work on the RK Ashram-Janakpuri corridor under phase-4 in December 2019. Five underground stations namely R.K Ashram, Nabi Karim, Sadar Bazar, Pul Bangash and Ghanta Ghar will be built on the line where the groundwater level is high. ♦ Water preservation is the major focus area for DMRC during the construction of phase 4 corridors.  ♦ The agreement will ensure the dewatered groundwater from the five upcoming underground stations on the RK Ashram-Janakpuri corridor are properly utilized. ♦ Under the move, groundwater from the Ghanta Ghar and Pul Bangash metro station sites will be used to revive the Roshanara Bagh lake. ♦ Also, groundwater from RK Ashram and Nabi Karim sites will be supplied to the water tank maintained by the Central Public Works Department. ♦ The municipal authority will start boating and other beautification in order to attract tourists.

    Gujarat signed MoU with ITDC to promote tourism

    46 days ago
    India Tourism Development Corporation (ITDC) Ltd signed an MoU Tourism Corporation of Gujarat on 20 February 2020. The move is an attempt to enhance the tourism growth in India. The MoU was signed by G Kamala Vardhana Rao, C&MD, ITDC, Jenu Devan, Commissioner of Tourism and Managing Director, Tourism Corporation of Gujarat in an event held at Dhordo, Kutch. MoU Provisions: ♦ The MoU will provide consultancy services for innovative or decorative lighting and the illumination of important monuments and sound and light shows at important places in Gujarat. ♦ The Gujarat state government has developed many focussed sights to attract tourism.  ♦ The state government aims to work with ITDC to promote and develop tourism through innovative and creative steps. ♦ Both sides discussed the importance of Destination Management and Community Participation in the tourism sector.  ♦ The MoU will help them to understand the concepts and frameworks, approaches, challenges faced in implementation and impact generated by such initiatives on the society and the overall economy.

    DFCCIL signs MoU with RailTel for maintenance of OFC network

    46 days ago
    Dedicated Freight Corridor Corporation of India (DFCCIL) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with RailTel for the maintenance, development, and marketing of the existing and upcoming telecom infrastructure comprising of Optical Fibre Cable (OFC) network. The MoU was signed by Anurag Sachan MD and Puneet Chawla Chairman & Managing Director Railtel.  MoU: ♦ Under the telecom infrastructure along the Dedicated Freight Corridor (DFC) alignment consisting of Towers, Telecom Network, OFC, and associated equipment will be leased by RailTel to third parties.  ♦ Revenue raised from the sale and marketing of the spare OFC capacity will be shared by DFCCIL and Railtel.  RailTel: RailTel Corporation, a Mini Ratna (Category-I), is one of the largest neutral telecom infrastructure providers in India. The Public sector undertakings (PSU) owns a pan-India OFC network on exclusive Right of Way (ROW) along the Railway track. RailTel provides nationwide Broadband Telecom & Multimedia Network connections in all parts of the country. This facility has been provided in addition to the modernization of Train operations and administration network systems.

    India, Myanmar signed MoU for bus services from Mandalay-Imphal

    47 days ago
    India and Myanmar signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for the commencement of a bus service between the two countries from April 2020. The information was provided by Chief Minister of Manipur N Biren Singh.  Aim: The opening of bus service between India and Myanmar aims to promote tourism and visits between people of the two cities. MoU Highlights: ♦ The MoU was signed between Shwe Mandalar Express Company Limited, Yangoon and Seven Sisters Holiday, Imphal on 14 February. The MoU was signed under the Act East Policy. ♦ Under the MoU, the 14-hour inaugural trip is set for 7 April 2020. ♦ The companies and the government have been working on this route since 2018 when the border gate opened. ♦ Shwe Mandalar Express will offer bus service from Mandalay to Tamu in Chin State. ♦ Seven Sister Holidays will provide service from Tamu to Moreh and Imphal.

    India and Norway strengthen partnership on blue economy

    48 days ago
    Union Minister for Earth Sciences Dr. Harsh Vardhan and Norway's Minister for Climate and Environment Mr. Sveinung Rotevatn opened the India-Norway Task Force on Blue Economy for Sustainable Development on 18 February. The aim is to make the Indo-Norwegian Ocean Cooperation a key pillar in the bilateral relationship. The meeting is the third meeting of the Task Force. Other initiatives: ♦ India and Norway also signed a Letter of Intent (LoI) to confirm that they will develop a new framework for collaboration on Integrated Ocean Management and Research.  ♦ Several projects on combating Marine Litter is being carried out as a part of the Joint Initiatives. ♦ Both countries aim to manage the resources in the oceans in a sustainable manner. ♦ The agreement will ensure integrated ocean management at the government level. India-Norway Task Force on Blue Economy: The India-Norway Task Force on Blue Economy for Sustainable Development was launched jointly by the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Norwegian Prime Minister Ms. Erna Solberg. It was launched during her visit to India in January 2019. The task force aims to develop and follow up joint initiatives between the two countries. It mobilizes relevant stakeholders from both Norway and India at the highest level. It will also ensure continued commitment and progress across ministries and agencies.

    GoI, World Bank signs loan agreement to improve groundwater management

    49 days ago
    Government of India and the World Bank signed a $450 million loan agreement on 17 February. The agreement aims to support the national programme to arrest the depleting groundwater levels and strengthen groundwater institutions in India. The loan agreement was signed by Shri Sameer Kumar Khare, Additional Secretary, Department of Economic Affairs, and Mr. Junaid Ahmad, India Director, India on behalf of the World Bank. Agreement Provision: ♦ The Atal Bhujal Yojana (ABHY)-National Groundwater Management Improvement Programme is supported by the World Bank. ♦ The agreement will allow the implementation of the ABHY scheme in the states of Gujarat, Maharashtra, Haryana, Karnataka, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, and Uttar Pradesh and cover 78 districts.  ♦ The programme will enhance the recharge of aquifers and introduce water conservation practices. ♦ It will promote activities related to water harvesting, water management, and crop alignment and equip communities and stakeholders to sustainably manage groundwater. ♦ It will support on-ground actions that are based on community ownership and judicious management of water resources.

    India, Portugal signs Cooperation Agreement in the field of Maritime Transport and Ports

    52 days ago
    A Cooperation Agreement was signed between India and the Republic of Portugal in the field of Maritime Transport and Ports on 14 February 2020. The objective of the agreement is to strengthen the coordination of Maritime transport between the two countries. Agreement Highlights: ♦ The agreement will open avenues for cooperation to promote Maritime Transport between India and Portugal for better operation of their merchant fleets. ♦ It will also enhance cooperation to harmonize and unify their position with International Organization Institution, forums and conferences related to Maritime and Port activities. ♦ It will also help the two countries to coordinate accession to international conventions 

    Cabinet approves MoU signed between India and Iceland in the field of Fisheries

    54 days ago
    The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi approved a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed between India and Iceland in the field of Fisheries. The MoU was signed on 10 September 2019. Aim: The MoU will strengthen the existing friendly relations between India and Iceland. It will also enhance consultation and cooperation on Fisheries including consultation on bilateral issues. MoU Provisions: ♦ The MoU will create facilities for the exchange of scientists and technical experts and their proper placement, especially in areas of estimating Total Allowable Catches in offshore and deep-sea areas. ♦ Provision of training to fisheries professionals from key fisheries institutions in the various management aspects on areas of modern fisheries management and fish processing. ♦ Under the MoU, scientific literature research findings and other information will be exchanged. ♦ It will hold an exchange of experts/expertise to study the prospects of fishing.

    AP govt signed MoUs with Agri institutions to provide technical assistance to farmers

    56 days ago
    The Andhra Pradesh State government signed memoranda of understanding (MoU) with 11 premier agricultural institutions in the country on 10 February 2020. MoUs were exchanged between the state Agriculture Department and institutions, including the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR), National Institute of Plant Health Management, M S Swaminathan Research Foundation, Central Fertiliser Quality, and Training Institute, and National Seed Research and Training Institute, Amaravati.  Aim: The aim is to usher in revolutionary changes in the agriculture sector through technology and knowledge transfer to farmers in the state. MoU Provisions: Under the MoU, the institutions will provide technical assistance which will lead to a sustainable increase in farmers' income using organic and natural farming processes. Rythu Bharosa Kendras: ♦ Also, the AP government is to set up 11,158 Rythu Bharosa Kendras across the state by June. ♦ It would be manned by agriculture, horticulture, veterinary and aquaculture assistants to guide farmers in best practices. ♦ These centres will have fertilizer, quality seed, and pesticides guaranteed by the state government. ♦ It aims to enhance farm management practices and train farmers in organic and natural farming.

    HAL signed MoU with Elbit Systems for Digital HUD for fighter planes

    60 days ago
    Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) signed an MOU with Israel-based defense electronics company Elbit Systems on 6 February 2020 during the DefExpo 2020. The MoU aims to promote and market the Digital Head-Up Displays (HUD) units.  MoU Highlights: ♦ The MOU will extend cooperation for new HUD technologies in the country. ♦ It will also promote Digital HUD to the Indian Defence Services and other potential customers.  ♦ The digital HUD will incorporate new features like Large Eye Motion Box and Digital Image Source to increase the pilot's situational awareness, Wide Instantaneous and Total Field of View with Minimal Binocular Disparity.  ♦ The HUD system, under the MoU, will be compatible with Night Vision Imaging Systems having improved maintenance features. Digital Head-Up Displays (HUD): HUD is a transparent display that provides a seamless view of critical information to the pilot. This information will be projected directly in the pilot's line of sight on a screen just inside the windshield. It will allow them to keep their visual attention focused outside the aircraft.

    India, Russia signed 14 MoUs at the Fifth round of IRMIC

    60 days ago
    The fifth round of India-Russia Military Industrial Conference (IRMIC) was conducted on the sidelines of Defexpo-2020 at Lucknow on 6 February 2020. The conference was co-chaired by Indian Defence Secretary Dr. Ajay Kumar, and Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade of Russian Federation Mr. Oleg Ryazantsev. 14 MoUs were exchanged between the Russian Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) and the Indian companies during the conference. Conference Highlights: ♦ The Ministers discussed the Inter-Governmental Agreement (IGA) on the Joint manufacturing of spares in India which was signed at Vladivostok, Russia on 4 September 2019.  ♦ The IGA provides a framework for the partnership of Russian OEMs with the Indian industry for the manufacturing of spare parts of Russian origin equipment in use by the Indian Defence Forces.  ♦ India's efforts to expedite the collaboration between the Indian and Russian Companies were highlighted.  ♦ Russia reaffirmed its active participation in the collaborations under the ambit of the IGA. It also said that it will take all necessary steps to facilitate the manufacturing of parts in India. ♦ The also discussed the way forward to achieve the objectives of IGA under the Make in India initiative. Participants: A large number of delegates from the defence sector companies of India and Russia participated in the conference.

    IOC Signs an Annual Agreement on Rosneft's to Buy Crude

    61 days ago
    State-claimed Indian Oil Corp, India's top purifier, has marked an arrangement with Russian oil major Rosneft that gives it an alternative to purchasing as much as 2 million tons, or 40,000 barrels for each day (BPD) of unrefined in 2020, the Indian oil serve said on 5th February 2020.  India has been expanding the wellsprings of its raw petroleum imports to fence geopolitical dangers that can gag supplies from a specific area or nation. The purifier will practice its alternative to purchasing Urals rough under this first yearly arrangement with Rosneft at whatever point the value is sufficiently low to make up for cargo costs.  IOC Agreement Under the agreement, IOC has the alternative to take as much as 40,000 BPD of oil this year, said the source, who declined to be named as he isn't approved to address the media.  Indian state purifiers usually purchase Russian oil through the spot advertise as opposed to under the agreement. The country's unrefined imports from Russia have commonly been low since the cargo costs will, in general, be higher than for provisions from the Middle East. India, the world's third-greatest oil purchaser, and merchant, transport in over 80% of its rough needs, as a rule depending on the Middle East for the more significant part of its inventory. Be that as it may, its imports from that area slid to a four-year low a year ago.  The Middle, a lot of India's unrefined imports, shrank to 60% a year ago - down from 65% in 2018 and most minimal since 2015 - as record yield from the United States and nations like Russia offered open doors for merchants to take advantage of different supplies.  

    APEDA-CFTRI Sign MoU for Guwahati Liason Office

    62 days ago
    A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed by CSIR-CFTRI with APEDA to set up a Liaison Office in Guwahati, Assam, to give specialized help to the nourishment businesses in the North East district. It will profit the ranchers, makers, and business people. APEDA has embraced numerous limited time exercises as of late to bring the North East conditions of India on to the fare map. In 2019 five global purchaser merchant meets were sorted out by APEDA in Assam, Manipur, Tripura, Arunachal Pradesh, and Sikkim to grandstand the capability of agribusiness/cultivation. They handled nourishment items, including natural products, to open the fare window from the North Eastern States.  Capacity building is another such territory where APEDA is distinctly centering on hand-holding the new exporters from the North East district. As of late, APEDA composed a presentation visit to Maharashtra, considered as one of the significant fare centers, to familiarize the exporters and state authorities from Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, and Nagaland on send out arranged cultivating, packhouse and current nourishment handling units.  APEDA has likewise sorted out explicit effort projects and preparing on trade process for the partners from the North East area. North East district has enormous potential in changing over vast zones into natural affirmation for which preparing on the prerequisites of the National Program on Organic Production (NPOP) have been bestowed toward the North East states to make mindfulness on the massive capability of natural farming and fares.  Focal Food Technological Research Institute, CSIR−CFTRI, Mysuru, (a constituent lab of Council of Scientific and Industrial Research, New Delhi) is a spearheading Institute working in the territory of Food Science and Technology, and Human Resource Development began during 1950. Throughout the years, it has brought out numerous creative items and procedures into the market on top of the best in class R&D practices of the Institute and the changing way of life of the purchasers. A portion of these endeavors incorporate improvement of newborn child nourishments items, moment prepared blends, parboiling of paddy, development of spirulina, wellbeing, and health nourishment items. Cultural mediations have been the sign of CSIR-CFTRI, and an enormous number of ranchers engaged in moderate and practical strategies for esteem expansion to agri-items adding to the country's economy. It has been on the cutting edge for creating a quality human asset for the improvement of the nourishment industry.  North Eastern Region has gigantic open doors for nourishment preparing and other agri-business that can add to the financial upliftment of the locale and create offices for new businesses. It is normal that the contact office of CSIR-CFTRI will reinforce the nourishment preparing division in the North East and will have duplicating impact on the fare of customary and handled nourishment items from the locale.

    NTPC signs 750 Million Dollar Worth of the Largest Single Foreign Currency Loan Ever

    63 days ago
    State-owned electricity producer NTPC Ltd today announced it had signed a 750 million dollar syndicated loan in Japanese Yen. The proceeds will channelize to fund programs to reduce emissions from power plants and hydro projects. The loan was issued under the automatic route of the External Commercial Borrowing Regulations of Reserve Bank of India and had an 11-year door-to-door maturity under two tranches. The company mentioned that the Indian State Bank, Tokyo fully underwrite the facility; Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation, Singapore; and Bank of India, Tokyo as of January 20, 2020, and will be launched shortly by the banks for general syndication. Loan Procedure The loan proceeds will soon be used to finance Capex to build the Flue Gas Desulphurization (FGD) network, hydro projects, and other projects using ultra-supercritical low carbon technology. FGD systems significantly reduce Sulfur Dioxide emissions in thermal power plant flue gasses and are a step towards sustainable operations and a cleaner environment.

    Today Current Affairs: Centre to sign an accord with Bodo militant group NDFB

    70 days ago
    The government of India signs an accord with the banned Assam-based insurgent group Democratic Front of Bodoland (NDFB) on 27 January 2020. The agreement will be signed by the Joint Secretary in the MHA, Satyendra Garg, and Assam Chief Secretary Kumar Sanjay Krishna with the leaders of the four factions of the NDFB. It will be presided over by the Union Home Minister Amit Shah and Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal. Accord highlights: ♦ The accord will provide a great deal of political and economic leverage without their key demand of separate Bodoland either in the form of a state or a Union Territory (UT). ♦ It will provide for some political rights to the Bodo tribals living in Assam. It will be a special economic package for the community. Bodo tribals: The Bodo tribals are an ethnolinguistic group present in Assam. The people of the tribe are a part of the Bodo-Kachari family. The people speak the Bodo language. The Bodo tribal people are active in the Bodoland Territorial Council and in districts of Kokrajhar, Baksa, Udalguri, and Chirang of Assam. 

    India signs 15 MoU with Brazil including Cyber Security

    72 days ago
    During the visit of Brazilian President Jair Messias Bolsonaro to India, 15 agreements were signed between India and Brazil in various fields on 25 January 2020. The MoUs are: 1) MoU on Bioenergy Cooperation 2) MoU for Cooperation in the field of Oil and Natural Gas 3) Investment Cooperation and Facilitation Treaty  4) Agreement on Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters 5) MoU in the field of Early Childhood 6) MoU on Cooperation in the field of Health and Medicine 7) MoU in the field of Traditional Systems of Medicine and Homeopathy. 8) Cultural Exchange Programme for the period 2020-2024 9) Agreement on Social Security 10) MoU on Cooperation between the Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In), Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MEITY) of India and the General Coordination of Network Incident Treatment Centre, Department of Information Security, Institutional Security, Cabinet of the Presidency of Brazil (CGCTIR/DSI/GSI) on cooperation in the area of Cyber Security 11) Programme of Scientific and Technological Cooperation for implementing the agreement on scientific and technological cooperation for the period 2020-2023 12) MoU on Cooperation in the field of Geology and Mineral Resources 13) MoU between Invest India and the Brazilian Trade and Investment Promotion Agency 14) Joint Declaration of Intent (DoI) for Cooperation in the fields of Animal Husbandry and Dairying 15) MoU for establishing a nodal institution in India to carry out research on Bioenergy

    India, Bangladesh signs to upgrade Ashuganj-Akhaura road

    73 days ago
    India and Bangladesh signed an agreement to upgrade Ashuganj-Akhaura road into a 4-lane highway on 24 January. The agreement aim is to upgrade the 50.58 kilometre long road between Ashuganj river port and the Akhaura land port in Bangladesh into a 4-lane highway.  Aim: The project is aimed to boost connectivity between the North-eastern part of India and Bangladesh. It will facilitate sub-regional connectivity among South and South-east Asian countries.  Agreement: ♦ Under the agreement, the Roads and Highways Department (RHD) of Bangladesh and an Indian Company Afcons Infrastructure Limited will upgrade the 39 km long road between the Ashuganj river port to the Dharhar area.  ♦ The RHD and an India-Bangladesh joint venture (JV) firm will upgrade the remaining part of the road from Dharhar to Akhaura.  ♦ The deal expects the work to be completed on time and to maintain quality. India-Bangladesh relation: Among the ties between India and Bangladesh, development cooperation is a crucial aspect. The project is part of the $2 billion second line of credit (LoC) extended by India to Bangladesh in 2016. 46 projects in Bangladesh have been identified by the two governments that would improve connectivity within the country and out of the country.

    India, World Bank sign USD 210 mn loan agreement for Maharashtras Agribusiness

    73 days ago
    Government of India (GoI) and the World Bank signed a $210 million loan agreement for the State of Maharashtra. The loan was aimed to support Agribusiness and Rural Transformation projects in the state. The loan amount from the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) has a grace period of six years and a maturity period of 13.5 years. Aim: The project aims to support smallholder farmers to participate in competitive agriculture value chains and facilitate agri-business investments in the state. The main objective of the agreement is to increase market access and productivity in focus commodities Agreement: ♦ The agreement will support to build the resilience of crops to recurrent floods or droughts in Maharashtra. ♦ The project will be implemented in all 36 districts of Maharashtra. ♦ It is expected that around 1 million farming households will directly benefit from the project.  ♦ At least 43% of farmers and farm-workers participating in project activities are expected to be women.  ♦ Specific focus will be given to women-led enterprises and the participation of women in the decision-making processes of farmer producer organizations. ♦ It focuses on enhancing the capacity of the state to effectively manage and deliver agricultural technical support and services and increase credit linkages to formal financing institutions ♦ It will improve Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) standards and investing in business development services which will help small holder farmers in the state.

    IOCL signed MoU with Ghana to implement Ghanas National LPG Promotion Policy

    74 days ago
    Indian Oil Corporation Ltd (IOCL) signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Ghana's National Petroleum Authority (NPA) on 23 January 2020 at Shastri Bhawan, New Delhi. The MoU was signed by Union Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas Dharmendra Pradhan witnesses media signing of an MOU on LPG cooperation with National Petroleum Authority (NPA) and Ministry of Energy (Petroleum) Ghana.  MoU Provisions: ♦ As per the MoU, IOCL will expand Ghana's liquified petroleum gas (LPG) network. ♦ IOCL will provide its assistance and technical expertise in the implementation of Ghana's National LPG Promotion Policy ♦ The MoU will provide administrative assistance to IOC when it commercially participates in Ghana’s downstream petroleum sector. ♦ The MoU comes after India's success in the Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (PMUY) that provides clean fuel, and China's Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) which aimed to invest about $8 trillion in infrastructure projects across Europe, Asia, and Africa.  Ghana: President: Nana Akufo-Addo Vice-President: Mahamudu Bawumia Capital: Accra Currency: Ghanaian cedi (GHS) Ghana is bordered by: ♦ Burkina Faso in the north ♦ Gulf of Guinea and the Atlantic Ocean in the south ♦ Ivory Coast in the west ♦ Togo in the east   

    MoRD signs MoU with Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to strengthen grassroots institutions

    74 days ago
    The Ministry of Rural Development (MoRD) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) under the Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana, National Rural Livelihoods Mission (DAY-NRLM).  Aim: The MoU aims to strengthen grassroots institutions of the rural poor. Signed by:  The MoU was signed by Smt. AlkaUpadhyaya, Additional Secretary and Mission Director NRLM on behalf of MoRD and by Shri AlkeshWadhwanion behalf of BMGF in presence of Secretary, Shri Rajesh Bhushan who appreciated the initiative and collaboration between the two parties. MoU provisions: ♦ The MoU reiterates DAY-NRLM and the Foundation's shared focus on improving the lives of India's poor and the marginalized with the aim of reducing poverty through institutions of marginalized rural women for promotion of diversified and gainful self-employment while creating skilled wage employment opportunities. ♦ The MoU will remove barriers such as gender inequality and lack of opportunities for women's entrepreneurship and poor health. ♦ It will provide access to financial institutions and markets.  ♦ As per the MoU, the Ministry will make use of the foundation’s expertise, and leverage its network, to provide technical assistance and support to the DAY-NRLM.

    Cabinet approved MoUs signed between India, Tunisia and Papua New Guinea Electoral Commission for elections

    75 days ago
    The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi approved the Memoranda of Understanding (MoU) between India, Tunisia, and Papua New Guinea. The MoU aims to boost India's international relations. Impact: ♦ The Election Commission entered into Memoranda of Understanding (MoU) with the Independent High Authority for Elections of Tunisia (ISIE) and the Papua New Guinea Electoral Commission (PNGEC) for elections for cooperation in the field of electoral management and administration. ♦ The MOUs aims to promote bilateral cooperation.  ♦ It aimed at providing technical assistance and capacity support for the ISIE and PNGEC for elections for cooperation in the field of electoral management and administration ♦ It also ensures cooperation in the field of electoral management and administration ♦ The MoU will ensure to provide support to such bodies in conducting elections in their respective countries. 

    India, Brazil to sign Bilateral Investment Treaty and Strategic Action Plan

    76 days ago
    India and Brazil will be signing a Bilateral Investment Treaty (BIT) during the visit of Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro as the Chief Guest of the Republic Day celebrations from 24-27 January 2020. Around 20 agreements are to be signed. Action plan: ♦ The two countries aim to upgrade the strategic partnership with an action plan. ♦ The Strategic Partnership Action Plan will serve as an umbrella agreement for the plans the two countries will make in order to increase defence cooperation, technology sharing, and a logistics agreement. ♦ Also, the Bilateral Investment Treaty is expected to take the partnership between the countries to the next level ♦ The countries are committed to foster economic growth in both countries. Note: The bilateral relations between India and Brazil was elevated to a Strategic Partnership in 2006. Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Bolsonaro met twice in 2019.   

    Indian Navy signed MoU for offshore Data with GSI

    76 days ago
    Indian Navy signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Geological Survey of India (GSI) on 21 January 2020. The MoU was signed by  Commodore AA Abhyankar, who heads the Indian Navy's Oceanology and Meteorology Directorate and Shri N Maran, Deputy Director-General of GSI. MoU Highlights: ♦ The MoU aims to ensure the sharing of seabed sediment data, products and expertise for Naval Application in Meteorology and Oceanography.  ♦ GSI's Marine and Coastal survey Division based at Mangaluru has mapped most of India's 2.1 Million sq. km  Exclusive Economic Zone and has a vast repository of offshore data.  ♦ As per the MoU, the data collected using GSI's oceanic research vessels Samudra Manthan, Samudra Ratnakar, Samudra Kaustubh and Samudra Shaudhikama will be used by Indian Navy's blue water fleet. Reliable and accurate oceanographic modeling will support the fleet's expansive maritime operations in the Indian Ocean region. Geological Survey of India (GSI): Established on: 1851 Headquarters: Kolkata Director-General: S. N. Meshram C.G.S. GSI functions under the Ministry of Mines. It is one of the key national survey organizations of India.

    GoI signed agreements to end Bru-Reang refugee crisis

    80 days ago
    Union Minister for Home Affairs Amit Shah headed the signing of an agreement between the Government of India, Governments of Tripura and Mizoram and Bru-Reang representatives in New Delhi 16 January 2020. The agreement will end the 23-year old Bru-Reang refugee crisis. This historic agreement is in line with PM Modi's vision for the progress of the North East and the empowerment of the people of the region.  Background: In 1997, around 5,000 families comprising around 30,000 Bru-Reang tribals were forced to flee Mizoram and seek shelter in Tripura due to ethnic tension. These people were housed in temporary camps at Kanchanpur, in North Tripura. Since 2010, the Central Government took efforts to permanently rehabilitate these refugees and it has been assisting the two State governments to take care of the refugees. Until 2014, 1622 Bru-Reang families returned to Mizoram in different batches.  On 3 July 2018, an agreement was signed between the GoI, the two State governments and representatives of Bru-Reang refugees and 328 families comprising of 1369 individuals returned to Mizoram.

    Assam, World Bank sign $88 mn loan agreement to implement Inland Water Transport Project

    80 days ago
    World Bank signed an $88 million loan agreement with the Government of India and the Government of Assam on 16 January 2020. The loan is to help modernize Assam's passenger ferry sector that runs on its rivers including the Brahmaputra and implement Inland Water Transport Project. Inland Water Transport Project: ♦ There are more than 361 ferry routes cross the Brahmaputra in Assam and provides a crucial means of transport to thousands of commuters in both the urban and rural areas of the Brahmaputra Valley. ♦ The Assam Inland Water Transport Project (AIWTP) will improve the passenger ferry infrastructure and its services in the state ♦ It will also strengthen the capacity of the institutions running inland water transport.  ♦ Well designed terminals and energy-efficient vessels will make the ferry services more sustainable with the least disruption to nature. ♦ The project will support the state's efforts to corporatize its own ferry activities.  ♦ Under the project, the government ferries will be operated by the Assam Shipping Company (ASC) and the Assam Ports Company (APC) will provide terminals and terminal services on a common-user basis to both public and private ferry operators.

    India signed MoU with Finland to deepen defence cooperation

    82 days ago
    India signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Finland on 15 January 2020. The MoU was signed by Defence Secretary Dr. Ajay Kumar and Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Defence of Finland Mr. Jukka Juusti. The MoU is signed on the sidelines of Raisina Dialogue 2020. MoU Highlights: ♦ The MoU is aimed at further defence cooperation between India and Finland. ♦ It will enhance co-operation in the field of Production, Procurement, Research and Development (R&D) of Defence-related Equipment and Industrial cooperation.  ♦ The MoU will induce cooperation between Finnish companies and Indian Defence Public Sector Undertakings.  ♦ Since DefExpo 2018, a draft MoU between the two countries in the field of defence cooperation was under discussion. It has now been approved in the run-up to DefExpo 2020. Background: In 2019, Mr. Jukka Juusti led a delegation to Aero India in Bengaluru to participate in the Make in India vision. His visit formalized an arrangement for Defence Industrial cooperation through an MoU. Also, a delegation from Finland had visited India between 29 November and 2 December 2018, to explore new business opportunities for Finnish companies. Previously, on 13 February 2016, Prime Minister of Finland Mr. Juha Sipila visited India for the inauguration of the Make in India week and held bilateral discussions with Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi during his visit to India. On 17 April 2018, Prime Minister Modi held a bilateral meeting with Mr. Sipila during his first India-Nordic Summit held in Stockholm, Sweden. Note: DefExpo 2020 is has been scheduled to be held in Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh from 5-9 February 2020.

    Indian Railways signs MoU with RailTel for Phase 2 of e-Office Execution

    84 days ago
    Indian Railways has signed MoU with RailTel, a Mini Ratna PSU under Ministry of Railways, for the phase 2 of the National Informatics Centre (NIC) e-office project. This comes after the successful completion of the Phase 1 execution of the NIC e office for 50000 users in 58 units. The MoU signed by ED/TD, Railway Board, Shri Umesh Balonda, and GM/IT project/RailTel, Smt. Haritima Jaipuriar Phase 2 of NIC e-office Project: ♦ In phase 2, RailTel will register 39000 users over 34 Railway divisions on the NIC e office platform by 30 June 2020.  ♦ NIC e-Office is a cloud-enabled software developed by NIC ♦ It is deployed from RailTel Tier III certified data centres at Secundrabad and Gurgaon.  ♦ NIC e-office is based on the Central Secretariat Manual of e-Office Procedure (CSMeOP).   ♦ Currently, 4 modules namely File Management System (eFile), Knowledge Management System (KMS), Collaboration & Messaging Services (CAMS) and Personnel Information Management System (PIMS), are part of the e-office system. ♦ E-Office ensures a paper-less culture that saves operational cost and reduces the carbon footprint which is one of the most urgent needs of the world. Phase 1: The phase 1 of NIC e-office execution began with a deadline in March 2020. It created 50000+ users in 58 units of Indian Railways and trained the executives to handle the platform in a span of a mere 6 months' time. RailTel completed Project 1 way ahead of the deadline.

    IIFPT signs MoU with 8 Institutes in India to help small farmers

    84 days ago
    The Indian Institute of Food Processing Technology (IIFPT), Bathinda signed Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with 8 different reputed institutes of the region in the states of Punjab and Haryana. IIFPT signed and exchanged the MoUs with the VC's and Director's of the 8 Universities, Colleges, and Institutes.   Aim: The MoU was aimed to increase the income of small farmers. It also aims to open new opportunities for the benefit of farmers. MoU Provisions: ♦ The MoU will empower the farmers and entrepreneurs to take benefits from the Gram Samridhi Yojana under which the Ministry of Food Processing Industries has got Rs.3000 crores for upgradation of technology.  ♦ The MoU will let the Universities, Colleges, and Institutes work in collaboration with each other to achieve the vision of PM Modi to increase the income of small farmers. ♦ It will facilitate a collaborative programme of research, consultancy, skill development, institutional development, information dissemination, and student's in-plant training. The linkage will strengthen the mutual bond and relationship between the partners. The 8 institutes that signed the MoU are: 1) Punjab Agricultural University (PAU), Ludhiana 2) Maharaja Ranjit Singh Punjab Technical University (MRSPTU), Bathinda 3) Central Institute of Post-Harvest Engg. & Technology (CIPHET), Ludhiana 4) National Dairy Research Institute (NDRI), Karnal 5) Indian Institute of Wheat & Barley Research (IIWBR), Karnal 6) Sant Longowal Institute of Engg. & Tech. (SLIET), Sangrur 7) Guru Nanak College, Budhlada 8) National Agri-Food Biotechnology Institute (NABI), Mohali 

    AP Government signed MoU with KFW to implement ZBNF

    88 days ago
    The Andhra Pradesh Government has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the representatives of a German firm, KFW, in Amaravati, Andhra Pradesh to implement Zero Budget Natural Farming in the state. It comes after the Zero Budget Natural Farming (ZBNF). Provisions of MoU: ♦ The agreement aims to scale up the ongoing project with KFW. ♦ The YS Jaganmohan Reddy led-State government has allocated Rs.304 crore on the project. ♦ The project aimed to cover 2.39 lakh farmers in around 600 village panchayats and promote natural farming. ZBNF: The ZBNF was implemented with German Assistance. It covered over 1 lakh hectares in the past two years. It has been aligned with other schemes like the Rastriya Krishi Vikas Yojana. The estimated amount of the project is Rs.1015 crore. The Andhra Pradesh government has taken a loan of Rs.711 crores out of the estimated amount towards the climate resilient, ZBNF.

    India, France agreement on ratification of Migration and Mobility Partnership get approval

    88 days ago
    The Union Cabinet chaired by the PM Narendra Modi approved the ratification of the Migration and Mobility Partnership agreement signed between India and France. The agreement was signed in March 2018 during the State Visit of the French President Emmanuel Macron to India. Agreement provisions: ♦ The Agreement represents a major milestone to enhance people-to-people contacts and strengthen cooperation on issues related to irregular migration and human trafficking between the two sides.  ♦ It also aims to foster the mobility of students, researchers, academics, and skilled professionals between the countries. ♦ The Agreement will be initially valid for a period of 7 years. It will then incorporate provision for automatic renewal and a monitoring mechanism through a Joint Working Group (JWG). ♦ The Agreement marks India's expanded multi-faceted relationship and confidence with France.

    Cabinet approved the agreement signed between India and Mongolia for outer space cooperation

    89 days ago
    The Union Cabinet approved the agreement signed between the Government of the Republic of India and the Government of Mongolia on 8 January 2020. The agreement aimed at enhancing the cooperation of the countries in the exploration and uses of outer space for peaceful and civilian purposes. The agreement was signed at New Delhi on 20 September 2019. Agreement provisions: ♦ As per the agreement, the countries shall enable pursuing the potential interest areas of cooperation in field such as space science, technology, and applications including remote sensing of the earth, satellite communication and satellite-based navigation Space science and planetary exploration, use of spacecraft and space systems and ground system, and application of space technology. ♦ The agreement set up a Joint Working Group, drawing members from DOS/ISRO and Communications and Information Technology Authority of the Government of Mongolia. The group will work out the plan of action including the time-frame and the means of implementing this agreement.

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