27th IB Centenary Endowment Lecture








            Dr. Avinash Chander, Secretary, Defence Research and Development Organization has delivered the 27th Intelligence Bureau Centenary Endowment Lecture on the subject ‘Emerging Technological Challenges for National Security’, here today.

Following is the text of the Lecture:

“Emerging Technological Challenges for National Security




India got freedom 67 years back after subjugation of more than 1000 years by foreign rulers.  We are again facing challenges threatening our freedom.

On one hand we are seeing new young generation, with their entrepreneurial skills and innovation skills, ready to take India on path of economic andindustrial growth.We are building a new capability, we are having a new great potential for economic growth and the individual growth. At the same time we are facing challenges both external and internal fronts.

We are in the hub of most turbulent region currently. On our west front Pakistan, democracy which is facing its own internal dissentions, Afghanistan, Iraq, and Syriaare in the middle of turmoil. In the northeast we have insurgencies; we have hostile nuclear powers surrounding us on both sides andwith an established history of hostilities.

The security challenges today are going beyond traditional domains of land, sea and air. New forms of conflict, new domains of warfightingare emerging. The space which has become a dominant force in our day to day life, cyber space which is governing every activity has proved to be a boon and threat simultaneously, Underwater area is emerging to be a new area of conflict because of resource control, Unmanned warfare will change the way the wars are fought and the way the security challenges are going to be handled.

Asymmetric warfare, guerilla tactics, internal insurgencies sponsored by external forces has been traditionally a practice all over the world for thousands of years, and it is being refined more and more today by our adversaries.

These challenges also gives us an opportunity to play a leading role as a stabilizing force in this region if we can find solutions to these challenges and come out stronger, and that’s where the harnessing of our intelligence the process of information control becomes vital.

Information and Knowledge

Information has always been used as a weapon and it has emerged as the most powerful tool in present scenario. Harnessing of intelligence, processing of information, control of knowledge has become the single most important factor in security strategy.

The necessity to collect, process, and disseminate strategic and tactical information on the enemy’s forces and terrain has become increasingly important to forces.

From both the National and Homeland security perspective, knowledge about adversary’s capabilities, limitations and intentions assumes greater significance in order to degrade his strengths and exploit his weaknesses.

Intelligent Systems in Ancient India

Information gathering and Intelligence have been emphasized even in Vedas and Puranas. We find the invocations in Rigveda and Atharvaveda, where it talks how the spies of Agni came down from the sky with thousands of eyes. The son of Brihaspati, teacher of gods, Kacha was sent as a spy to Sukracharya to know the Sanjeevani Mantra as explained in MathsyaPurana. In sabhaparvam of Mahabharata “LokapalaSabhakhayanaParva” explains the importance of information gathering, establishing the spy network and related instrumentation in connection with armed forces.

 ‘ArthaShaastra’ by Kautilya defined it as an integral part of court craft. The first of two chapters on establishing an intelligence system explain five kinds of spies for gathering internal intelligence. Analyzing the information plays vital role in establishing the facts. The information has to be properly decoded, processed, validated against the source and then used to establish certain assumptions or to conclude the hypothesis.

Intelligence agencies in ancient India were not conceived of as an instrument of oppression but as a tool of governance. Intelligent agents were considered as `eyes of the king`.

The process and need remain the same today also,what has changed is the technology.

Modern Intelligence Infrastructure

Under this scenario, the intelligence agencies like RAW, IB, JCB,ARC, NTRO etc are playing an important role in defining  the needs and driving the technologies. In addition to enabling the military with possible threat information, these agencies are assisting in the management of internal security with equal importance.

 The strength of any nation depends primarily on in its intelligence agencies. The intelligence agencies assess potential of the adversaries in terms of their Economic strength, Defence and Industrial infrastructure, Communication and Transport systems, political leadership, scientific and technical prowess, sociological, cultural and geographical factors and so on. Thus, the mission of our intelligence agencies is to support defence planning and operations and contribute to national security through a coordinated effort by the entire intelligence community



Technology for Intelligence

Technology in a way has revolutionized the mere genesis of intelligence, with it being a critical enabler in every phase of the intelligence cycle: Information gathering, Information analysis and Information dissemination to the decision makers. The impact of technology has not only revolutionized the traditional means of intelligence such as the Human Intelligence (HUMINT), but has also opened new disciplines such as:Signals Intelligence (SIGINT), Geospatial Intelligence (GEOINT), Imagery Intelligence (IMINT), Cyber Intelligence (CYINT) and Measurement and Signature Intelligence (MASINT).

Let us look at intelligence collection. The human intelligence today has secure encrypted IP based, electronic channels that enable practically indecipherable and untraceable transfer with 512 bits long encryptions; digital steganography is one of the most difficult to intercept. Spread Spectrum & Frequency Hopping based encrypted communication is extensively used in battlefield operations.

Technology allows precise location of a transmitter, fingerprinting the system enable detection of individual transmitters. Precise measurements from space in hyper spectral domain are processed to differentiate between decoys and the real targets. It is also possible to detect missile launches & the nuclear radiations based on space based sensors, integrated with information from ground radars & networked sensors.

            The most important means of information gathering continues to be the open source intelligence – the internet monitoring, social media interaction, mobile communication access. A whole lot of technologies from voice processing, natural language processing, data mining, text analysers, ontology & taxonomy involving individual characterization, correlation and so on are being developed and constantly upgraded.

At the same time, there is a need to strengthen the security our communication as well as cyber infrastructure.



Cyber Security – Threats & Solutions

Today, military strategiesare guided by Network-Centric Operations (NCO). These Operations rely on computer equipment and networked communications technology to provide a shared awareness of the battle space that is expected to synergize sensors, command and control and result in superior decision-making, and overwhelming war-fighting advantage. It uses electronic and information technologies to provide real time situational awareness, mission-critical information, coordination and collaboration throughout the chain of command, securely and reliably.

The networking world is also going to be a driving force. Networks of every-day usage items are already a reality in terms of Internet of things. In future every human being will be having embedded devices in the body. Technologies being developed for mobile ad-hoc networks, swarms of mobile devices, intelligent dust will be common place. Ubiquitous networking may be the technology of the day wherein sensors (communicating over wireless frequencies) would be mounted everywhere in the environment making the environment highly interactive.

The cyber domain is also fast expanding: The 5G systems will allow massive data transfers upto1Gb/sec. the data flow and volumes will enhance multifold. By 2020 we are expecting to have 50billion systems connected to the network. Old net structures are giving way to dense cloud structures. Speed of information processing doubles every 12-18 months, parallel processing with optical interconnects on a single chip are enhancing the computation capability. A single breakthrough capability like quantum computation can change the entire scenario.

How do we protect our infrastructure and our cyberspace? US PRISM program used multiple techniques to breach the security. These involved hardware manipulation through the companies data, database tapping of agencies like Google, Microsoft, Yahoo etc., internet and mobile phone metadata tracking, bypassing encrypted layers and direct intelligence.

In this context we need to make our critical cyber infrastructure trustworthy, dependable, survivable and conforming to the desired needs. The challenges are social engineering & masquerade at action level, password guessing and key logging at Human-Machine Interaction level, breaking of crypto protocols at algorithm level, tampering with authority, denial; of service, malware at software and hardware architecture level and finally interception and jamming at physical information layer.

Another critical threat comes from the life cycle risks which consist of supply chain Risk or Risk in operations. Supply chain risk gets inserted during development, shipment, Installation, Patch, Upgrade or remote maintenance. The operations risks can be introduced through insider Exploits or remote vulnerability exploits.

DRDO has made indigenous efforts for threat identification, Risk Assessment, Trustworthy development, indigenously architecture high assurance platforms and high assurance systems evaluation.

Capability exists for development of high grade cryptographic devices with indigenously developed cryptographic algorithms, architecture for LAN and WAN security and near term risk mitigation of software based security systems running on COTS computing platforms.

DRDO has initiated the development for trustworthy and secure networking devices that can maintain their performance integrity in face of attacks, trustworthy computing platforms for application specific information processing and trustworthy storage solutions to prevent data leakage.

Compared with attacks on software, attacks on ICs are much more difficult to detect and defend. However, the ultimate solution for such problems can only come with hardware fabrication within the country. This will require both investment and strategic direction.



Space Based Intelligence

With the advent of today’s satellite technologies, the focus of intelligence took a paradigm shift from earth to space.

Space based Intelligence is another prominent technology area in enhancing the planning, coordination and execution of the military as well as homeland operations in the future. Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance operations, together called as ISR provides early warning of enemy threats and enables military forces to increase the effectiveness, coordination and lethality. ISR includes systems ranging from satellites, to aerostats, to unmanned aerial vehicles, to unmanned combat air vehicles, to other space based equipment. Space based intelligence assures Day/Night and all weather ISR. High resolution imagery, multi spectral images giving information and intelligent information on the landscapes are of prime importance.

SAR & GMTI have emerged as most effective sensors for long range detection and tracking of military targets under all weather, day/night conditions and achieving an accurate ‘kill’ of enemy targets through guided weapons. SAR/GMTI fitted on aircrafts can provide High resolution capability for precision mapping and navigation, analyze terrain composition and texture, battleground surveillance, target / decoy recognition, detect and track moving targets on the ground, etc



Space Security

Our space assets are to the tune of about $26 billion, but it is not the value of the assets, but the value of economy they are supporting which run into 100’s of billion dollars, through navigation, communications, mass media , all are dependent on Satellites. Our ability to predict cyclones,weather and crops, all are dependent on space.All these technologies, though offering benefits, are not spared from adversary threats.

To achieve self-reliance in the satellite navigation system, India is establishing the Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System with dependents from across all the services. It is necessary to safe-guard such system of national importance.

One space assets are vulnerable to Electronic warfare like Jamming, ASATs, Laser attacks, Killer microsatellites, etc. Thus, space security is emerging as an important element in India’s national security matrix.

Space security demands that we should develop capability to identify and deter any attacks on these assets. Space Situational Awareness for Surveillance of all space objects, activities, and terrestrial support systems (satellites &debris).Rapid Spacecraft Development, Assembly, Test and Integration are required. We need to develop the ability to position constellation of satellites in formation flights.  We need launch systems   that are simpler and require less preparation time in order to greatly increase the rapid reaction capabilities.



Low Intensity Conflicts

Majority of threats gradually are moving towards low intensity conflicts as the efforts in making larger damages are much smaller.

Asymmetric warfare requires new technologies to detect and prevent infiltration. The ability to monitor their movements, funding processes, support base,  Spot and control, ability to monitor their networks, training, monitor their social fabric that enables their growth require total control of information, constant growth of new technologies and new knowledge.

The Foliage and Ground Penetrating Radars and through wall detection Radar being developed by DRDO will provide situational awareness in low intensity warfare environments. The standoff detection of IEDs and Explosives being developed based on Lasers will provide the necessary capability to identify the threats by comparing the stored spectral database of the explosives. Detection of concealed arms and ammunition is another major concern.

Similarly low weight, fast and long range rifles for war and non-lethal rifles for home land security are developed by DRDO.  Corner shot rifles, Arms & Ammunitions requirements are being developed and constantly being improved to meet the specific needs and challenges. Similarly portable Explosive Detection & Diffusion systems, Remotely Operated Vehicle- DAKSH, a Sentry Robot, Explosive Detection Kit (Post Blast), SAW Based Sensor for DNT & TNT are some of the products developed.

Communication & Jamming: To protect places of strategic importance and ensuring the security of VIPS from threats originating from remotely operated electronic systems, reliable communication and jamming systems are essential. With the high potential cell phones available with every one, such systems have become mandatory and their constant upgradation is becoming vital.

Personnel Protection: To provide self-protection of the defending forces, light weight bullet proof armour for whole body protection, bullet proof vehicle - Vajra and bullet proof helmets and jackets are being developed.

Research and development in all these technology areas are keenly pursued in the laboratories of life sciences, Armaments and Combat Vehicle technology clusters of DRDO.

Terahertz Technology

Terahertz radiation falls in between infrared and microwave radiation in the electromagnetic spectrum, and it shares some properties with each of these. Like infrared and microwave radiation, terahertz radiation travels in a line of sight and is non-ionizing Like microwave radiation, terahertz radiation can penetrate a wide variety of non-conducting materials. In the near future broadband or frequency- agile terahertz radar shall be able to form high resolution 3D images of targets, and to extract detailed information on targets in the land, air and in space.

As Terahertz radiation can penetrate fabrics and plastics, it can be used in surveillance, such as security screening, to uncover concealed weapons on a person, remotely. This is of particular interest because many materials of interest have unique spectral "fingerprints" in the terahertz range. This offers the possibility to combine spectral identification with imaging. The Net Centric Operations shall demand large spectrum and terahertz shall be critical enabler by providing terabits per second data rate.



Unmanned Systems

Autonomous systems such as Unmanned Aerial Vehicle, Unmanned Combat Aerial Vehicle and Aerostats are highly effective in Surveillance and Reconnaissance. UAVs can be configured to operate in cooperative mission adaptive mode wherein Multiple Autonomous UAVs collaborating to accomplish a large scale ISR Mission carries out distributed intelligent processing of sensor data onboard and communicate each other to share information, to give commanders a complete, theatre-wide picture in real time.

Nishant unmanned aerial vehicle is already in use by Armed forces and the PMFs. RUSTOM 1 with capability of 7-8 hours endurance is ready. Next generation UAV Rustum-2 capable of operating at an altitude of 30,000 ft,  24 hrs endurance with payload of 350 kg and capable of carrying sensors like SAR, Maritime Patrol radar, ELINT, COMINT, Optical, IR imagery and tracking capability will made available within an years’ time including indigenous sensors..

Aerostat, an aerial platform for surveillance, operating at an altitude of 1 km and having a capacity of 2000 cubic mtswith payload of about 350kg has been developed. Advanced aerostats with a capacity of 5000 cubicmtrand more are under development. The future will be lighter than airship.

Radar with Electronic Scanned Array (ESA) technology is going to be available for high resolution imagery.

This coupled with high energy weapons capable of destroying / disabling systems at tens of kilometers is going to be vital. Unmanned Ground Vehicles (UGV) will be participating in intelligent missions capable of identifying and distinguishing between friendly & enemy systems with proper signature management.

SWARM of UGVs operating in a coordinated movement and  Unmanned Ground Vehicles supporting the soldier will form integral part of the fighting forces, having the ability to go ahead of the fighting forces for detection of mines, booby traps etc, for intelligence gathering in the forward areas to enable timely action to avoid sabotage.

Advanced data compression techniques have enabled the soldier to transmit the video imagery through a hand–held system for analysis and decision making. The ability to see through the fog enhances the fighting capability and enable intelligence gathering.



Futuristic Technologies

There are several technology areas being explored for strengthening the intelligence.

Multi-INT fusion

Multi-INT fusion is basically computer-based discovery, collection and exploitation of location- spatial and geospatial- information from many diverse sources. The sources of imagery can be satellites or UAVs based on IR or SAR imaging. The imagery thus obtained, integrated with MTI, Maps and SIGINT and processed in the computer provides the right information and inference to predict and anticipate the situation/location of the Target/threat environment.

We have already entered Nanotechnology era, with many sub 100 nm technologies entering the commercial domain. This will result in a suite of new manufactured nanomaterials, nanodevices and nanosystems with unprecedented properties and functionality. Nanotechnology is expected to revolutionize the military capabilities in medium term, in areas as diverse as Information technology, future soldier systems, semiconductor technology, sensors and actuators, photonics, stealth and camouflage, biomedical science, biotechnology and aerospace systems.

Motes and Smart dust:         Smartdust is a system of many tiny micro electromechanical systems (MEMS) such as sensors, robots, or other devices, that can detect, for example, light, temperature, vibration, magnetism, or chemicals. They are usually operated on a computer network wirelessly and are distributed over some area to perform tasks, usually sensing through radio-frequency identification. The concepts for Smart Dust emerged from DARPA due to the potential military applications of the technology. As this technology is a new dimension in the art of intelligence and is conceived as more relevant, focused research in this area is on the anvil.

Nanoscale and Quantum Communications shall be requirement for communication among future nanodevices. There are two main approaches that are being investigated for nano-communications. The first is EM based Nano Communications that uses electromagnetic waves as information carriers. CNTs are the most promising material for nano-communications which can act as antenna and demodulator together. The second is Molecular Communications based on natural communication technique used by insects communicating via pheromones and is envisioned to become a viable method for future nano devices. Concentration of the molecule at close proximity of the receiver may be used to understand the molecular bit transmitter sent.

The future shall bring lot of convergences to the fore. One of the possible future directions is programming adaptability into the material itself. Programmable matter, which has the ability to change physical properties such as shape, density, optical properties, and others in a response to user input or autonomous sensing, may become reality. These smart materials could be programmed to self-assemble, alter their shape to perform a desired function, and then disassemble. Materials having computational and communication capability will have tremendous impact both civilian and military capabilities. Morphing materials can be used to change an aircraft‘s wings in flight or in clothing that alters its characteristics to keep users cool in the day and warm at night. Such adaptability could produce electronic devices that can adapt to heat and dust in the desert and then shift to resist humidity and moisture in a jungle environment. The enabling set of technologies is convergence of chemistry, information theory, and programmability to build information directly into materials.

Converging Info/Bio/Nano:

The long term shall see the convergence of nanotechnology, biotechnology, information and cognitive technology that shall transform every aspect of life including warfare. It shall bring about unprecedented enhancement of human performance; brain-to-brain communication; cognitive warfare and even “Cyborg vision” may also become reality through convergence of human and machine intelligence.

Smart materials shall be combined to produce smart structures that perform sensing, controlling and actuation activities. The smart structures will be used to develop supernatural noses, ears and eyes that are smart enough to directly communicate with the brain. Such structures would enable soldiers to expand their sensory input exponentially.



Conclusion

Knowledge gets converted into Technology; when worked upon it, results in weapons. Technology doesn’t shape itself immediately into a weapon.  The transformation is time consuming.  How to convert a technology into a useful weapon is innovation cycle. These cycles used to take centuries and decades, The cycles have become much faster..

To meet the challenges of development of these high end and emerging technologies, we are committed to provide requisite training including upgrading professional skills of our Scientists & Engineers, required infrastructure for realization of these technologies and products, andinvigorating Academicenvironment.

But best of technologies are as good as the man behind it. What will continue to matter is his alertness, his ability to process information and threats and ability to take quick decisions and actappropriately. Our eternal freedom will depend on the ability to empower that man. That responsibility lies on all of us.”
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Teams to visit identified districts to expedite LTV/Citizenship issues 

A meeting was convened today by the Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) with representative associations especially of minority communities from neighbouring countries to address their grievances related to grant of Long Term Visa (LTV) and Indian Citizenship. 

Additional Secretary (Foreigners) in the MHA, Shri BK Prasad chaired the meeting of about 75 representatives from 15 such associations to discuss problems being faced by minority communities from neighbouring countries in grant of LTV and Citizenship. The representatives were also explained the procedure for grant of LTV and Indian Citizenship and the various initiatives undertaken by the MHA towards addressing their grievances and difficulties. 

It was decided that the teams of MHA officials will visit 24 identified districts for Citizenship in eight States and 14 districts for LTV cases of these applicants. The visiting officials will hold camps during the next two months and assist the applicants in the settlement of Citizenship/LTV cases. 

The 24 districts relating to Citizenship are Indore and Bhopal (Madhya Pradesh), Nagpur, Thane, Mumbai city, Pune, Amravati and Jalgaon (Maharashtra), Ahmedabad, Surat, Kutch, Rajkot, Patan, Banskantha and Gandhi Nagar (Gujarat), Raipur (Chhattisgarh), Lucknow (Uttar Pradesh), Jodhpur, Jaisalmer and Barmer (Rajasthan), Sirsa (Haryana) and Bangalore, Krishna and Karwar (Karnataka). 

The 14 districts relating to LTV are Indore and Bhopal (Madhya Pradesh), Mumbai, Pune and Nagpur (Maharashtra), Ahmedabad and Gandhi Nagar (Gujarat), Jodhpur, Jaisalmer and Barmer (Rajasthan), Lucknow (Uttar Pradesh) and Bangalore, Krishna and Karwar (Karnataka). 

Upon directions from the Union Home Minister Shri Rajnath Singh, the MHA had set up of a Task Force under the Joint Secretary (Foreigners) to monitor and expedite processing of Citizenship and LTV applications, on September 05, 2014. The Task Force has since held interactive sessions in a number of cities across the country having concentrations of such people to monitor and expedite grant of Citizenship/LTV and addressed public grievances. 

MHA had received representations from time to time citing hardships and difficulties in grant of LTV/Citizenship applicants, especially of minorities from neighbouring countries who are often of poor economic standing. Reviewing the procedure, the Union Home Minister had directed senior officials in the MHA to expedite the entire process. 

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Government constitutes Committee to look into grievances related to 1984 riots 

The Government today constituted a Committee to look into various grievances relating to the 1984 anti-Sikh riots. The Ministry of Home Affairs has been receiving a large number of complaints from various individuals/associations in the matter of 1984 riots. 

The Committee comprises of Mr. Justice G. P. Mathur (Retired Judge of Supreme Court of India) as Chairman and Shri J. P. Aggarwal, Joint Secretary (Judicial) in the Ministry of Home Affairs as Member Secretary. 

The Committee shall oversee the implementation of the payment of enhanced compensation of Rupees 5 lakh per person killed during the 1984 riots, as approved by the Union Cabinet on December 10, 2014. The Committee shall further look into the need for constitution of Special Investigation Team (SIT) for investigating the cases of 1984 riots and submit its report within three months. 

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Infiltration from across the Border 

The fencing is not feasible along the riverine stretches of the Indo-Pakistan and Indo-Bangladesh Border. There is about 145.876 km of unfenced riverine stretches along the Indo-Pakistan Border which is about 6.3% of the Indo-Pakistan Border. Similarly, there is about 930.076 km of unfenced riverine stretches along the Indo-Bangladesh Border which is about 22.7% of the border. The riverine segments of the borders are being patrolled and dominated with the help of water crafts/speed boats/floating Border Out-Posts (BOPs) of the Border Security Force (BSF) water wing. 

The BSF, deployed on the Indo-Pakistan and Indo-Bangladesh Border, has developed its own technical solutions like Farheen LASER walls which are very useful to guard riverine/nullah gaps. These LASER walls have been deployed along the Jammu International Border. 

The thermal sensor like Hand - Held Thermal Imager (HHTI) (1710 numbers) are already installed along the Indo-Pakistan and Indo-Bangladesh Border. Further, at present, there is no proposal for installation of anti-tunnel ground sensors in the fenced stretches of both the borders. 

This was stated by the Minister of State for Home Affairs, Shri Kiren Rijiju in a written reply to Shri Anandrao Adsul, Shri Vinod Lakhamashi Chavda, Shri Dharmendra Yadav and Shri Shrirang Appa Barne in the Lok Sabha today. 

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Fire Safety Officers 

‘Fire Services’ has been included as a municipal function in the XII Schedule to the Constitution of India in terms of Article 243-W. As such, it is the primary responsibility of the State Governments to raise and equip the fire services in their jurisdiction and enforce their fire safety Acts. 

The Government of Gujarat has informed that there is an enabling provision for creation of institute of fire safety and training. 

This was stated by the Minister of State for Home Affairs, Shri Kiren Rijiju in a written reply to Smt. Jayshreeben Patel in the Lok Sabha today. 

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Integrated Check Post 

The Integrated Check Post (ICP) Attari is spread over 120 acres and caters to the movement of both passengers and cargo at the International Attari road border. The ICP Attari has adequate facilities to handle the present level of both the imports and exports cargo. 

The desired sheds, one for export cargo and two for import cargo with refrigerated storage of perishable cargo are available at ICP Attari. There have been rare instances of strikes or halting of work for short durations. 

This was stated by the Minister of State for Home Affairs, Shri Kiren Rijiju in a written reply to Shri A.T. Nana Patil and Shri Sunil Kumar Singh in the Lok Sabha today. 

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Cases Handed over to NIA 

A total number of 88 cases have been assigned to the National Investigation Agency (NIA) for investigation and prosecution since its inception. Out of these 88 cases, investigation has been completed in 62 cases and charge sheets have been filed in 60 cases and closures reports have been filed in 2 cases. In 12 cases, trials have concluded and judgment has been delivered by the Special Courts constituted under the NIA Act, 2008, out of which, in 10 cases, 29 accused persons have been convicted, and 2 cases have resulted in acquittal. The remaining 26 cases are under investigation. 

This was stated by the Minister of State for Home Affairs, Shri Haribhai Parathibhai Chaudhary in a written reply to Shri C.S. Putta Raju in the Lok Sabha today. 

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PIB launches webpage on Good Governance 

One stop repository on Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee


Press Information Bureau has launched a webpage to mark ‘Good Governance Day’ on the website of the Bureau. The webpage is one-stop information resource on the former Prime Minister Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee, whose 90th birthday coincides with the Good Governance Day on 25th December. A presentation on the webpage was done to apprise Secretary Ministry of Information & Broadcasting, Shri Bimal Julka about the features of the page. Praising the webpage, Shri Julka said “efforts like this are step towards making people aware of the accomplishments of Shri Vajpayee” and hoped that general public, researchers and mediapersons will find the page a valuable resource. 

The webpage contains more than three hundred speeches of the former Prime Minister in both Hindi and English, segregated into themes like governance, education, science and technology and economic reforms. It has archival photographs of the key moments of the life of Shri Vajpayee including his tenure as Foreign Minister and Prime Minister. Another highlight of the page is films made by Films Division and Doordarshan on Shri Vajpayee. The page also provides video links to many key speeches of Shri Vajpayee. On the Audio front, the page carries ‘Kaljayi Swar Sampada’ comprehensive collection of Shri Vajpayees representative moments including his poetry, prepared by All India Radio. 

Keeping in the spirit of Good Governance Day, the page carries links to videos on best practices in governance, compilation of award winning case studies in innovative governance. The webpage also carries features written by senior journalists, close colleagues of Shri Vajpayee. 

The page carries sharable links for different social media platforms. There is a subject specific twitter widget to provide stream on the hashtag #GoodGovernanceDay



Additional Secretary Ministry of Information & Broadcasting, Shri Jitendra Shankar Mathur and Director General PIB, Shri Frank Noronha were also present on the occasion. The webpage can be accessed at http://pib.nic.in/goodgov. 

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NIESBUD signs MoU with World Centre India Services Council 

The National Institute for Entrepreneurship and Small Business Development (NIESBUD) an autonomous organization under the Ministry of MSME and World Trade Centre India Services Council (WTCS) has entered into a cooperation agreement to promote trade and commerce for the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise (MSME) sector in India. 

WTCS and NIESBUD will provide training in the form of entrepreneurship development and upskilling of domestic enterprises to facilitate export promotion by providing various services, information, certifications and data for smooth operations. 

The World Trade Centre will promote trade and business under one roof. It would be a Hub for export oriented, financial and allied services which would cover all major cities through the ‘Hub & Spoke’ model. It will help micro, small and medium enterprises in accessing overseas markets for their products and services. MSMEs will get benefits of robust and most modern infrastructure facilities and world-class services by World Trade Centre. 

Being a member of WTC Association, the WTCS has access to a large database of buyers and sellers, products and markets and thereby would help in promoting trade and commerce for its members. The agreement would enable exchange of information on various products, markets, buyers & sellers for benefit of MSME. 

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Opening remarks made by the Parliamentary Affairs Minister Shri M.Venkaiah Naidu during the Press Conference on conclusion of the winter session of Parliament. 

“I welcome all of you to this press conference of post-winter session of Parliament which has just concluded.

I know you would be very keen to know of the Government’s assessment of this important session that began when we have completed six months in office.

Six months is not a very long period but good enough time for the Government to make a clear statement of its intentions and particularly, through the forum of Parliament.

Our intention has been to do the needful to speed up economic recovery which is necessary to meet the aspirations of the people, which were amply conveyed in the last general elections.

This warranted some concrete initiatives to lay the ground for enhanced economic activity through simplification of tax regime, promoting ease of doing business, increased flow of investments etc.

On this count, we could effectively convey our intentions. Introduction of GST Bill, the Companies Amendment Bill, the Coal Mines (Special Provisions) Bill and the Electricity (Amendment) Bill in the Lok Sabha were clear pointers of our keenness to usher in the much desired reforms.

In fact, introduction of GST Bill is the high point of our government’s initiatives and of this winter session. All of you are aware of the efforts made by our government and the Finance Minister Shri Arun Jaitely in getting the states on board before introduction of this crucial Bill. When GST comes into being soon, this would be the most far reaching tax reform since Independence. GST is expected to increase GDP by about 2%. This would reduce corruption, and make business hassle-free.

Government can only make its best intentions known by introducing necessary legislative proposals and prioritizing the pending legislations inherited. Thereafter, it is for the Parliament to adjudicate and serve the felt needs of the country.

Two Bills related to labour reforms were cleared during this winter session. These being: The Labor Laws (Exemption from Furnishing Returns and Maintaining Registers by Certain Establishments) Amendment Bill, 2011 and The Apprentices (Amendment) Bill, 2014. (The Lok Sabha passed this Bill during the last Budget session this year.)

The Lok Sabha has also cleared important Bills during this winter session relating to proposed auctioning of coal blocks and enhancing ease of doing business.

On the whole, the Lok Sabha has passed a record 18 Bills as against 12 during the last Budget session early this year and 04 Bills during winter session last year.

On the contrary, the Rajya Sabha could clear only 12 Bills during this period. The Upper House could not take up 06 Bills that were passed by the Lower House and could have done so had the same spirit prevailed.

The major issue that emerged during the just concluded winter session is that should the two Houses of Parliament have different perspectives and priorities?

The fact of the matter being that the Government has majority in the Lok Sabha while the opposition has the numbers in the Rajya Sabha.

Why is that the Lok Sabha has been more productive while the Rajya Sabha not so productive?

Why is that the Rajya Sabha has been marred by interruptions during 16 of the 22 sittings, while only brief interruptions were witnessed during only 5 sittings of Lok Sabha during the same period?

Should the Rajya Sabha be disrupted for days on the issue of naming of an airport which was in pursuance of decisions taken earlier?

Can the majority be used to bring the House to a grinding halt negating the established Parliamentary democratic principle of collective responsibility of the Government?

So, the broader issue is how one should put to use the majority in Parliament?

It was evident that while the majority in the Lok Sabha was used constructively, the same was used to obstruct legislation in the Rajya Sabha.

It may be true that the responsibility of enabling smooth functioning of Parliament mostly rests with the Government of the day. But the opposition cannot certainly say that they have no responsibility for the same and their mandate is only to obstruct.

The stalling of parliament by the opposition which obstructed the passage of key bills in this winter session is an effort to stall this government’s development agenda and with a view to restricting the government’s choice in the next budget.

The Opposition, I hope would have realised that the battle with the government will have to be on the strength of their ideas rather than shrillness of their voices. More importantly the public has been assured by the conduct of this session that Shri Narendra Modi ji is very much the same man who they voted for when they chose him to head the Government.

Let me remind you all that during the All Party Meeting convened on November 22, I have made it clear that the Government will walk extra-mile to take on board the views and concerns of the opposition. I have no hesitation in asserting that we have walked the talk.

We have circulated at the all party meet, a list of legislations that we would like to be introduced and taken up for consideration during the winter session.

Right in the beginning an understanding was forged between the Government and the opposition that every week one Calling Attention Motion and one Short Duration Discussion will be taken up in both the Houses on issues of opposition choice.

In BAC meetings, I myself have requested the Presiding Officers that if need be, opposition members may be given time more than their due, during discussions.

When the opposition expressed concern over some observations outside the Parliament of one of my colleagues, we immediately intervened and made the concerned retract. This is a new initiative of our government.

Going further, when opposition wanted the Prime Minister to speak his mind on that matter, he did so.

Whenever required, we have reached out to the opposition to address their concerns so that Parliament can function smoothly.

At every opportunity, I have acknowledged the role of opposition in the productive Budget session early this year. In fact, I even thanked opposition in one of our BJP Parliamentary Party meetings.

You are aware of the events relating to the Insurance Bill during the last Budget session. During our discussions with opposition, the sense we were given to understand was that they would enable passing of this crucial legislation if only the Government agreed to setting up a Select Committee. We agreed to that suggestion.

Is this not enough evidence of our desire and conviction of taking opposition along? I fail to understand what more needs to be done?

During this Winter session, the Lok Sabha has passed 18 bills while the Rajya Sabha could clear only 12 Bills. The details of Bills passed, issues taken up through Calling Attention Motions and other provisions are enclosed.

On account of interruptions, the Lok Sabha has lost 3 hours 26 minutes only while the Rajya Sabha has lost 51 hours and 57 minutes.

Accordingly, the productivity of the Lok Sabha has been 105 .71% while that of the Rajya Sabha has been only 67.18 %. All concerned owe an answer to the nation for this.

With a heavy heart, I am constrained to say that the opposition has let the country down in the Rajya Sabha during this winter session. The way they have disrupted the House for almost half of the session time has no justification. It is unfortunate that the interests of the country have been held captive by their short sighted Political considerations.

I do concede the right of the opposition to effectively voice their concerns. But it may not be wise to totally obstruct legislation, which is the primary mandate of the Parliament.

I sincerely appeal to the opposition parties to seriously introspect and ensure that Parliament lives up to the expectations of the people in the times to come.

Despite differences with opposition on certain issues, there has still been some manifest commonality of purpose, for which I thank them.

I am grateful to the Presiding Officers and Panel Chairpersons of both the Houses of Parliament for their efforts in guiding the Houses through trials and tribulations.

I also thank my colleagues Shri Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi and Shri Rajiv Pratap Rudy for their support and hard work.

I also appreciate the hard work put in by the Ministry of parliamentary Affairs, its Secretary, and secretariats of both the Houses under the guidance of respective Secretary-Generals.

I am particularly, grateful to all of you present here and those not here for your sustained interest in the proceedings of winter session and for your informed reporting.

I wish you all and your families a Happy Christmas and a Very Happy and Prosperous New Year and Sankranthi (Pongal). ”



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ACC Appointment 

The Competent Authority has approved that Shri Lov Verma, IAS (UP:78), Secretary, Department of Health and Family Welfare, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare will hold additional charge of the post of Secretary, Ministry of AYUSH from 24.12.2014 to 02.01.2015 during the absence on leave of Shri Nilanjan Sanyal, IAS (OR:79). 

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Railway Minister Commissions Solar Plant in Rail Bhawan 

The Minister of Railways Shri Suresh Prabhakar Prabhu along with Minister of State for Railways Shri Manoj Sinha commissioned 30 kW Solar Plant at roof top of Rail Bhawan at New Delhi in presence of Member Electrical Railway Board Shri A.K. Mittal, Member Engineering Railway Board Shri V.K. Gupta, Financial Commissioner Railway Board Smt.Rajalakshmi Ravikumar besides other officials from Railway Board, Northern Railway and Delhi Division. This plant, capable of sourcing power to about 800 light fittings, will generate about 45,000 kWh per annum besides annual saving of about Rs.4 lakhs in electricity bills. 

On the occasion, Shri Prabhu envisioned that Railways is planning to harness solar energy in a big way which will be a step forward in mitigating the challenges currently being experienced by our environment. He stressed the need to expedite provision of solar plants at other Railway buildings also preferably in public private partner model. 

To protect our environment, addressing the challenges of changes in global climate, promoting sustainable development and reducing dependence on fossil fuel, Indian Railways have taken various initiatives and is endeavouring to harness wind and solar energy in a big way to provide environmental friendly pollution free mode of transport. So far Indian Railways is harnessing solar energy of about 10 MW capacity at about 500 Railway stations, 4000 LC gates and at number of rooftop spaces of office buildings, hospitals, workshops besides solar based water heating applications at training institutes, retiring rooms and running rooms. IR has further planned to provide solar plants of another 10 MW capacity at 200 Railway stations including Katra Railway station, 26 buildings and 2000 LC gates. 

To expand its footprint in the solar energy space, Indian Railway is in the process of formulating a ‘Solar Policy’ of procuring 1000 MW Solar Power under viability gap funding support and Central Financial Assistance schemes of Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) over next 5 years. 
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27th IB Centenary Endowment Lecture 27th IB Centenary Endowment Lecture Reviewed by Ajit Kumar on 6:43 PM Rating: 5

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