▼ West Bengal rechristened [08-30-16]
West Bengal assembly has adopted a resolution to rechristen the state’s name. It would be known as Bangla in Bengal, Bengal in English and Bangal in Hindi.
- The new name will require a constitutional amendment to effect the change
- In Bengali language, the state is currently referred to as Paschim Bengal which translates into West Bengal
- Renaming would change it to Bangla in Bengali
- This would blend well with the change in the spelling of the state capital
- During the time of partition, British province of Bengal had split into West Bengal and East Pakistan (formerly east Bengal) which became part of Pakistan and later became Bangladesh in 1971
- West Bengal is redundant now as there is no East Bengal
- Punjab was divided into West and East but called just that by both India and Pakistan following the partition
- Ms. Banerjee, the CM of the state has urged the centre to pass the resolution through the Parliament
- Consent of the Parliament is necessary to affect a name change
- In September 2011, the State Assembly has passed a resolution changing the name of the State to Paschim Banga both in Bengali and English
▼ 3 pronged action plan to resolve Kashmir crisis by Mehbooba Mufti [08-29-16]
According to a state government release, Kashmir CM Mehbooba Mufti outlined a three pronged action plan before the Prime Minister for the resolution of the Kashmir crisis. This includes involvement of separatists and Pakistan in substantiative dialogue to work out the solution to the problem in the light of contemporary geopolitical realities.
- Plan includes facilitating visit of an App Party Delegation in the valley later next week.
- It also indicates a possible change in the governor and appointing an interlocutor to hold talks with all stakeholders in the state
- Stressing the need for initiating a credible and meaningful political action on the ground to make peace and stability a reality in the state, she called for reviving the reconciliation and resolution processed which was initiated by NDA government headed by AB Vajpayee from 2002 to 2005.
- The CM also said that intra and inter state Confidence Building Measures initiated during the time helped transform the situation in the state and region.
- The resolution process needs to be revived, said the CM.
▼ Mukhi sworn in as Lt Gvnr of Andaman and Nicobar Islands, other governors sworn in [08-24-16]
Senior BJP leader Jagdish Mukhi was on 22 August 2016 sworn in as the 12th Lieutenant Governor of the Union Territory of Andaman and Nicobar Islands.
- Mukhi Succeeded Lt General A K Singh (Retd) who was appointed in July 2013. Earlier, he had been a minister and Leader of Opposition in the Delhi Assembly in the past.
- Mukhi was also a professor in Delhi University and has authored a book titled 'Company Law and Secretarial Practice’.
- Banwarilal Purohit on 22 August 2016 was sworn in as the Governor of Assam.
- Purohit succeeded Padmanabha Balakrishna Acharya, Governor of Nagaland who was Governor in-charge of Assam.
- V P Singh Badnore on 22 August 2016 took oath as the new Governor of Punjab. He was also sworn in as the Administrator of Chandigarh Administration.
- Punjab and Haryana High Court Chief Justice S J Vazifdar administered the oath of office and secrecy to Badnore at Punjab Raj Bhawan in Chandigarh.
- Badnore replaced Kaptan Singh Solanki, who is the Governor of Haryana. Solanki had been holding additional charge of Punjab Governor and Administrator of Chandigarh Administration since January 2015.
▼ Gujarat Assembly Speaker and Deputy Speaker elected [08-23-16]
Ramanlal Vora on 22nd August was elected unopposed Assembly Speaker.
- Vora is a prominent Dalit face of Gujarat BJP.
- He was earlier cabinet minister in the government for 15 years.
- He was recently dropped when Vijay Rupani took over as CM from Anandiben Patel.
- Assembly convened and Vora’s name was proposed by the CM and seconded by the Leader of the Opposition Shankersingh Vaghela.
- Another BJP leader Shambhuji Thakor was elected as Deputy Speaker gayer a voice vote.
- Chandrika Bariya was field from Congress for the post.
- On 23rd August, 2016, the assembly is said to ratify the Goods and Services Tax bill for constitutional amendment.
▼ PM Narendra Modi to be face of Incredible India campaign [08-22-16]
PM Narendra Modi will be the face of the Incredible India campaign of the Union Culture and Tourism Ministry.
- A decision has been taken and concepts for ad films will soon be submitted.
- Modi will talk about the significance of different places in those filks.
- Union Culture and Tourism Minister had earlier said the PM was the best face of the campaign.
- Its last brand ambassador was Bollywood actor Aamir Khan who made controversial remake on “leaving India.”
- Bollywood superstar Amitabh Bachchan’s name was also proposed before deliberations were made
- PM Modi has been touring the world to have India’s voice heard on international forums and clarifying the nation’s stand on Kashmir.
▼ Union Government constitutes NCTF [08-17-16]
Union Government on 12th August 2016 constituted the National Committee on Trade Facilitation. Committee seeks to develop a pan India roadmap for trade facilitation as per the TFA or Trade Facilitation Agreement of the World Trade Organisation.
- On April 22, 2016, India ratified the TFA which was the result of the Bali Package 2013 or Ninth Ministerial Conference of the WTO.
- It is an inter-ministerial body on trade facilitation which will be the national level body that will facilitate domestic coordination and implementation of TFA provisions.
- This will synergise the various trade facilitation perspectives across the nation and the focus will be on outreach programme for sensitisation of stakeholders.
- Committee will have a 3 tier structure with the main national committee for implementation of TFA.
- It will also be headed by Union Cabinet Secretary Pradeep Kumar Sinha at apex level.
▼ Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis announces commencement of 34 cyber labs [08-17-16]
Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis announced the commencement of 34 cyber labs in various parts of the state to crack down on cybercrime.
- A total of 51 psych labs will eventually be started in the state.
- CM also launched Aaple Sarkar, an integrated web based platform that allows citizens to register grievances and send suggestions to government on various issues in January 2015.
- There are now 30 lakh applications on the portal leading to 92 percent rate of satisfaction.
▼ Nagaland to grant 33 percent reservation to women in urban local bodies [08-16-16]
Nagaland’s state government on 10th August 2016 took the decision to grant 33 percent reservation to women in Urban Local Bodies.
- Decision was taken during a cabinet meeting held in Kohima.
- Decision was announced during the State Level Watershed Conference by CM TR Zeilang.
- Elections to the state ULBs have been pending for several years as the tenure of the first municipal bodies came to an end between December 2009 and March 2010.
- Joint Action Committee on Women’s Reservation of the Naga Mother’s Association was fighting the SC for 33 percent reservation which led to the withholding of the elections to the ULBs.
▼ Parliament: LS functioned 110.84% of the time in monsoon session [08-16-16]
Parliament functioned overtime in the monsoon session with the LS working for 110.84 percent and RS for 99.54 percent of the scheduled time, as per figures shared by the government.
- During this session, 15 bills were introduced. LS passed all 15 while RS approved 14 including the GST Bill.
- Some bills were introduced and passed on the same day for example Lokpal Bill, Taxation laws (Amendment) Bill and Maternity Benefits (Amendment) Bill
▼ MDWS launches short film series "An Open Mind" for Swachh Bharat people’s campaign [08-12-16]
Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation, GoI launched a short film series called “An Open Mind” in honour of Sanitation Champions spearheading the Swachh Bharat campaign
- The aim is to drive positive behaviour change in communities by eliminating open defecation and adopting safe sanitation practices
- The film series showcases real life stories of individuals who have made the campaign mission their own by adopting innovative ideas to encourage the use of toilets in communities and promote safe waste treatment practices
- The launch films have been created by BBC Media Action
▼ DGCA issues Civil Aviation Requirements from September 2016 [08-12-16]
DGCA (Directorate General Civil Aviation) has issued Civil Aviation Requirements which specify requirement of FDTL or Flight Duty and Time Limitation for cabin crew. Existing CAR has been reviewed and the revised CAR will be effective from September 1, 2016
- Revised CAR lays down provisions for extension of FDTL of cabin crew under unforeseen operational circumstances
- Some of the steps to strengthen security arrangements including time bound deployment of Central Industrial Security Force at major airports and deployment of Quick Reaction Teams at major airports also form part of CAR
▼ Special plan for Tripura introduced [08-12-16]
Along with devolution of funds to state governments, GoI has allocated funds for development of NE region
- For Tripura, Minister of DONER released INR 120 crore under the Non Lapsable Central Pool of Resources
- Border Area Development Programme is also administered by MGA for specific funds for development of the border areas
▼ President of India proposes 9 sutras for Innovation [08-11-16]
President Mukherjee emphasised the use of the National Knowledge Network and spoke on ‘Innovation: A Way of Life’.
- 9 sutras were proposed to promote innovation namely:
i. We should not snub children when they ask questions to which we have no answer;
ii. We should promote and reinforce a scientific temper by questioning our beliefs which are not compatible with scientific way of thinking;
iii. Innovation clubs and tinkering labs should be set up in schools, colleges and research institutions;
iv. We should build viable and sustainable bridges between formal and informal knowledge systems;
v. We must give due recognition to cultural, technological and traditional skills while implementing our employment guarantee schemes and skill development programmes;
vi. We should bring our educational system in line with contemporary societal expectations;
vii. We need to overcome the deeply-embedded inertia in our psyche and constantly ask ourselves: how can I solve this problem? Can I still try, no matter if I fail a few times?;
viii. We must develop a sense of immediacy as time and tide waits for none;
ix. We must not tolerate inefficiency, shabbiness and poor quality work.
- The President said India is the world’s largest youth-populated nation.
Over 600 million people in India out of a total population of 1.28 billion are below the age of 25 years and must utilise this.
▼ Mental Health Care Bill 2013 passed by RS on August 8, 2016 [08-10-16]
RS on 8th August 2016 passed the Mental Health Care Bill 2013 repealing the Mental Health Act 1987
- Upper house passed the bill with 134 amendments
- Bill provides for mental health services and care for persons with mental illness
- It also permits right of such persons to be protected during the delivery of mental healthcare and services
- Bill also states every person should have right to access mental health care and treatment from services run or funded by the government
- Right to access mental health care includes affordable good quality and easily accessible services
- Persons with mental illness also have right to equality of treatment, protection from inhuman and degrading treatment, free legal services and access to medical records and right to complain regarding deficiencies in the provision of mental health care
- It also provides for a mentally ill person to make an advance directive that states how he wants to be treated for the illness during a mental health situation and who his or her nominated rep should be.
- The bill also decriminalises suicide and prohibits ECT
- It is based on the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities that was ratified in 2007.
▼ Former Arunachal Pradesh CM Kalikho Pul found dead [08-10-16]
Former Arunachal Pradesh CM Kalikho Pul died on 9th August 2016 in Itanagar in AP
- He was found dead at the age of 47 and allegedly committed suicide
- The circumstances behind the death are being investigarted
- Pul was from the Kaman Mishmi ethnic group
- From 2003-2007, he served as State Finance Minister in the Ministry of CM Gegong Apang
- He broke away from INC to become acting CM of AP in February 2016
- His government was supported by BJP until it was dismissed by court order in July 2016
▼ Yoga guru TKV Desikachar passes away [08-10-16]
Well known yoga guru TKV Desikachar passed away on 8th August 2016 at the age of 78 following a brief illness
- He was known for transforming the manner in which yoga is practiced and turning it into therapy and wellness component
- He is the son of T. Krishnamacharya who is also known as father of modern yoga
- He helped people with tailor made programmes called Viniyoga
- He also taught Yoga to philosopher K. Krishnamurthi in 1960s
- In 1976, he founded the Krishnamacharya Yoga Mandiram
▼ Manipur’s Iron Lady Irom Sharmila ends hunger strike [08-10-16]
The world’s longest hunger strike ended on August 9 when Irom Chanu Sharmila ended her 16 year long fast with honey
- Sharmila went on a hunger strike for 5757 days and was being force fed by a nasal tube to keep her alive in prison turned hospital in Imphal
- She announced that she would break the fast and join politics to end the AFSPA Act through political means
- The 44 year old is now competing for the post of CM of the NE state
▼ GST Bill passed in LS [08-9-16]
Greatest tax reform since independence received the nod of Parliament as LS on 8th August 2016 passed all amendments to landmark Goods and Services Tax Bill passed by RS
- Bill was passed by 2/3rd majority with 443 members in LS voting in favour of the GST Constitution Bill
- AIADMK has staged a walkout when voting began
- Bill now has to be ratified by atlas 16 states in 30 days after it is passed by Parliament
- While LS passed the GST Constitutional Amendment Bill in may 2015, separate amendments to the clauses were proposed in the Upper House which has been ratified in the Lower House
- GST is a uniform indirect tax levied on goods and services revived across the nation and replace various taxes imposed on goods and services.
▼ Telangana Irrigation Department signs MoU with ISRO [08-8-16]
Telangana Irrigation Department signed an MoU with Indian Space Research Organisation for setting up Telangana Water Resources Information System (TWRIS) on Bhuvan web portal
- MoU with the Hyderabad headquartered National Remote Sensing Centre of ISRO was inked to capture field level irrigation network and mark irrigation structures on satellite visualisation tool Bhuvan
▼ Rail Geet dedicated to Indian nation [08-8-16]
Minister of Railways Shri Suresh Prabhakar Prabhu dedicated the Rail Geet/Railway Song to the nation
- This marks the first time Rail Geet has been composed for Indian Railways.
- Geet has been composed by music director Shravan and sung by Udit Narayan and Kavita Krishnamurthi. It is written by former Railway officer Shri Satya Prakash.
- The song has two versions : a longer version of 5 minutes duration and a shorter version of 3 minutes duration.
- Both the versions of the song are available on the YouTube account of Railway Ministry https://www.youtube.com/user/RailMinIndia.
▼ Arunachal Pradesh CM Pema Khandu inducts 10 ministers, expands cabinet [08-8-16]
In the first expansion of the cabinet, the CM of the State of Arunachal Pradesh Pema Khandu expanded his cabinet by including 10 ministers including former speaker Nabam Rebia
- Governor Tathagata Roy administered the oath of office and secrecy to the newly appointed ministers.
- The newly-inducted ministers are Tanga Byaling, Rajesh Tacho, Nabam Rebia, Honchun Ngandam, Wangki Lowang, Kamlung Mossang, Tapang Taloh, Kumar Waii, Takam Pario and Jomde Kena.
- Khandu is the CM of the NE state while Chowna Mein is the Deputy CM.
▼ One doctor for every 893 patients in the country: LS Minister [08-8-16]
There is one doctor for every 893 patients in the country, if allopathic doctors and those practicing Ayurveda, Unani and Homoepathy streams are considered together, as per LS announcement.
- Minister of State for Health Faggan Singh Kulaste indicated there were 9.59 lakh registered allopathic doctors in the country and 6.77 lakh Ayurveda, Unani and Homeopathy doctors.
- With 80 percent availability of doctors, it is estimated that close to 7.67 lakh (allopathic) doctors may be actually available for service.
- This gives a doctor to population ratio of 1:1681.
- In case allopathic and AUH streams are considered together, it gives a doctor population ratio of 1:893.
- As per the Indian Medical Council Act 1956, only practitioners enrolled in state medical register can practice medicine.
▼ Vijay Rupani takes oath as CM, Nitin Patel is deputy CM [08-8-16]
Vijay Rupani will take over as the new CM of Gujarat while Nitin Patel will be the deputy CM of Gujarat. Oath taking ceremony took place on 7th August 2016.
- Rupani was picked for the state’s top job by party MLAs.
- The meeting saw the participation of BJP President Amit Shah and senior leader Nitin Gadkari.
- Vijay Rupani was the state president of BJP and minister for transport, water supply, labour and employment in Anandiben’s cabinet.
- He was elected for the first time in 2014 winning the Rajkot West seat.
▼ CCEA permits NHAI to monetise public funded NH projects [08-4-16]
Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs chaired by PM Modi has authorised the National Highways Authority of India to monetise public funded NH projects which are operational and generating toll revenue for atlas two yeas after the Commercial Operations Date through the Toll Operate Transfer Model.
- Close to 75 operational NH projects have been identified for the monetisation.
▼ Madras HC to be renamed TN HC [08-2-16]
Tamil Nadu Assembly on August 1, 2016 passed a resolution unanimously for renaming the Madras HC as the Tamil Nadu HC.
- Resolution was moved by TN CM Jayalalithaa
- Resolution was passed in light of High Courts (Alteration of Names) Bill 2016 introduced in LS on 19th July 2016 introduced by Minister of Law and Justice, Ravi Shankar Prasad aiming to modify HC names of Bombay, Calcutta and Madras
▼ AP government inks deal with Japan to develop food value chain in state [08-2-16]
AP government on 31st July 2016 inked an MoU with Japan to develop food value chain in the state.
- As per the MoU, Japan’s Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries will promote direct investment in agriculture and food related industries by Japanese companies, in Andhra Pradesh.
- Along with developing a food value chain, it will also establish food industrial parks and develop cold chains.
▼ Government has cleared the name of Lt General Bipin Rawat for Army vice chief [08-2-16]
Government of India has cleared the name of Lt General Bipin Rawat as the new Army vice chief from September 1, while Lt Gen P M Hariz will replace him as the Southern Command chief.
- The force on August 1 also got a new signal officer-in-chief in Lt Gen A R Prasad.
▼ Gujarat CM Anandiben Patel resigns [08-2-16]
CM of Gujarat Anandiben Patel resigned on August 1, 2016 as protests by Dalits threatened BJP’s political chances.
- Patel was the state’s first woman CM and she posted her resignation on FB.
- She said the decision to resign was driven by the fact that she had nearly attained 75 years in age, reaching the years at which the PM expects ministers to resign.
- Modi appointed Patel as his successor in Gujarat in 2014; he ran the state for 13 years prior to that.
- Caste driven protests have driven Patel to resign.
- She also said she wanted to provide time for the new CM at important events like the forthcoming elections and the Vibrant Gujarat Summit.
▼ Gujarat government appoints JN Singh as Gujarat Chief Secretary [08-1-16]
Gujarat government has appointed JN Singh a 1983 batch IAS of Gujarat cadre as new Chief Secretary of the State in place of GR Aloria superannuating on July 31.
- Order was issued by the personnel department headed by additional Chief Secretary Anil Mukim.
- Dr. Singh was currently Chief Secretary (Finance) and also officiating as MD of Gujarat State Petroleum Corporation.
- In Gujarat, he was MD of the Sardar Sarovar Narmada Nigam Ltd, principal secretary revenue and additional Chief Secretary finance and personnel