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Punjab announces free education from Nursery to PhD for its women

Punjab’s Chief minister Captain Amarinder Singh has announced free education for girls from nursery to the doctorate level in government institutions of the state. The CM was speaking in the Vidhan Sabha on June 19. Punjab’s female literacy rate is certain to improve with the government’s announcement to provide free education to girls in the state. The female literacy rate in the state is 70.73%. However, not only literacy rate but overall living condition may see improvement with government’s provision of free education for women who wish to pursue even higher studies. Free is motivating The government has announced to provide free textbooks to all government school students. It will also introduce pre-primary classes (nursery and LKG) in government schools beginning next academic sessio...

Food fancy! Amazon may get centre’s nod to retail food products

In a major reform that is said to benefit the farmers and agriculturists, the central government has given its nod for the retailing of food products in the country. In June 2016, the government had allowed 100 per cent FDI in multi-brand food retail, including through e-commerce. However, the food products have to be produced, processed or manufactured in the country. Charming farmers It is said that the opening up of food retail will benefit farmers as the middlemen will be eliminated. Middlemen are often blamed of eating up farmers’ earnings and controlling the market prices. The government expects the organised retailers to source directly from the farmers. E-commerce players baking the idea! Now, US based retail giant Amazon’s $500-million investment in food retail is likely to get th...

8,000 crore spend: Railways aims to bring improved security & comfort to your travel experience by 2023.

Indian Railways seem a lot more committed to provide world-class comfort to its passengers. In an upcoming move, Indian Railways is going to introduce coaches with improved interiors and more facilities. It will induct about 40,000 coaches at an approximate cost of Rs 8,000 crore by 2023. Railway department is also looking to strengthen the safety features in existing conventional coaches. It will equip strong couplers to prevent capsizing during accidents. Phased plan The Railways aim to have 40,000 new look coaches operational within five years. The plan outlines retrofitting of 1,000 coaches in the current fiscal. The number will increase to 3,000 in the next fiscal and 5,500 coaches will be made available in subsequent years. Besides, Railways expect to manufacture some 15,000 new coac...

Can Kashi do it? Varanasi aims to become 100% clean energy city by 2025

Union Power Minister’s visit to Berlin has brought some good news for Varanasi. The power ministry has taken up the challenge that the world’s oldest city, Varanasi, will become a 100 percent clean energy city before 2025. The holy city has to draw energy only from the renewable sources so as to become a clean energy city Drawing parallels from his visit, he said Munich in Germany aims to become a clean energy city by 2025.The recent government’s undertaking marks that Varanasi will be ahead of this German city. Tough ambition At present, India does not have any city or town that is completely energized by renewable energy sources. Amid this challenge, Varanasi—known for its oldest civilization alive, will give a tough time to the planners to connect the narrowest and oldest streets to the...

Railways revamp: 20 stations to get a Malaysian facelift

The Tier-II cities in India may soon boast of hosting business havens and of standing as India’s fastest growing cities. Indian Railways is forging a long term partnership with Malaysian government to give the railway stations of these cities a facelift. The Indian Railways plans to join hands with the southeast country to redevelop about 20 stations in Tier-II cities across the country. This will attract 1 lakh crore rupees of private investment. The development project will improve the infrastructure at the platforms and the surrounding areas. About development plan It would entail construction of hotels, eateries, multiplexes, shopping malls and office complex for the use of developers. The commercial exploitation rights under the agreement will be valid for a period of 45 years, while ...

India brings pneumonia under Universal Immunsation Programme

The Health Ministry introduced a new vaccine called Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine (PCV) under the Universal Immunisation Programme (UIP) on May 13 2017. PCV will protect children from one of the most common causes of pneumonia, a bacterium which also causes ear infections, meningitis and blood infections. PCV will be introduced for free across the country in a phased manner.  The first phase will cover around 21 lakh children in Himachal Pradesh, parts of UP and Bihar. The second phase will cover MP and Rajasthan. Pneumonia: leading cause of death in Indian children under 5 A child in India loses his/her to pneumonia every 3 minutes. As such, India accounts for 20 % of global pneumonia deaths in children below five years of age. Benefits of PCV introduction PCV was available in private In...

Centre rolls out Measles-Rubella vaccine campaign

The Centre launched a single-shot Measles-Rubella (MR) vaccination campaign on February 5, 2017. The first phase will cover nearly 3.6 Crore children from Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Puducherry, Goa and Lakshadweep, Following the campaign, MR vaccine will be part of the routine immunization, replacing the current 2 doses of measles vaccines given at 9-12 months and 16-24 months. Campaign details The campaign will be implemented in a mission mode and will eventually cover 41 Crore children nationwide in the age group of 9 months to 15 years. All children in the age group will be provided MR vaccination free of cost at school/outreach session sites and health centres, irrespective of their previous MR vaccination status or MR disease status. Nature of the 2 diseases Measles is one of the most imp...

Mission Indradhanush – Phase IV identified 82,880 beneficiaries in Karnataka

The fourth phase of Mission Indradhanush will cover as many as 55,806 children (0-2 years) and 11,332 pregnant women, who have missed their routine immunization in six districts of Karnataka Urban viz. BBMP, Kalaburagi, Tumakuru, Mysuru, Belagavi, and Vijayapura. The programme aims to immunize beneficiaries against 10 vaccine-preventable diseases,  including diphtheria, whooping cough, tetanus, polio, tuberculosis, measles, rubella, and hepatitis B. Strategy for Immunization drive Under the fourth phase, four rounds will be conducted during May, June, July and August. Each round will consist of 7-days intensified immunization campaigns, beginning on the 7 of each scheduled month. The programme will identify, mobilize and immunize due beneficiaries (totaling 82,880) among pregnant women, ch...

6 districts in Haryana have less than 51 % immunization coverage

The district-wise review of immunization recently released by the National Health Mission (NHM) has revealed alarming data in the case of Haryana. 6 districts in the state have the lowest immunization coverage in the country with less than 51 % children fully immunized. Gurgaon shockingly included in the list Mission Indradhanush was launched in India with the aim to provide 90 % immunization coverage for children by 2020, protecting children against 7 vaccine- preventable childhood diseases. In Haryana, four phases of the mission have been held till April 7, 2017. However, 6 districts in the state have the following low coverage: Mewat (13.1%), Gurgaon (23.6%), Palwal (25.3%), Rewari (41.2%), Faridabad (46.3%), Jhajjar (50%). The financial and industrial hub of India, Gurgaon ranks second...

Dawn in healthcare: Varanasi to host free medicare to its patients

Prime Minister Modi’s promise of extending free medical services in the country is beginning to realise. The first free medicare facility is established at Varanasi –PM’s own Lok Sabha constituency. The BHU Trauma Centre, often referred as Eastern Uttar Pradesh’s AIIMS, and Sundarlal Hospital in Varanasi will now offer free treatment to the patients seeking care at these facilities. Both the facilities handle large numbers of patients from Nepal and Bihar. Funds doubled The fund to the 334-bed facility at BHU has been doubled. The grant of one lakh rupees per bed has been doubled to two lakh rupees per bed now. Free care will be provided for 24 hours to a patient admitted in the trauma centre. Free facility Any medicines, scans & tests and other surgical procedure required within 24 ho...

India steers ‘Startup India’ overseas; introduces welcome policy to foreign startups

Indian startups will now get a smooth foray into the German markets. The central government is planning to sign an agreement with Germany for a startup exchange programme. Commerce and industry minister Nirmala Sitharaman met Germany’s economic affairs minister Brigitte Zypries and discussed opportunities to share knowledge and best practices in the startup ecosystem. Agreement in making According to some officials, a formal agreement between the two countries is being drafted and is likely to be signed soon. The agreement will be signed between Startup India and the German Startups Association, which has about 650 startups and 50 partners, including corporate entities and venture capital firms. The agreement will also include coordinates entities from the United States, China, India and I...

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