Global Environment Facility (GEF) agrees to take up four pilot projects on sustainable urban practices

Global Environment Facility (GEF) agrees to take up four pilot projects on sustainable urban practices

CEO of GEF Dr.Naoko Ishii holds talks with Shri Venkaiah Naidu on smart cities and other initiatives

Global Environment Facility (GEF) that supports UN objectives of protecting environment and addressing climate change concerns, has agreed to undertake pilot projects in four Indian cities for promoting ‘green urban practices’. An understanding in this regard was reached during a meeting between the visiting CEO and Chairperson of GEF Dr.Naoko Ishii with Minister of Urban Development Shri M.Venkaiah Naidu here today.

Dr.Naoko Ishii said that the purpose of her current visit to India was to learn more about the central government’s initiatives in urban sector like building 100 Smart Cities and infrastructure development in 500 cities and explore if GEF could partner in promoting sustainable urban management practices.

Shri Venkaiah Naidu gave an account of different schemes and objectives which include enabling inclusive and sustainable urban development. After detailed discussion on urban development challenges and the need to promote environmentally sustainable strategies, Shri Naidu suggested that GEF should take up pilot projects for demonstrating comprehensive and sustainable urban practices encompassing conservation and efficient energy use, reducing carbon emissions for addressing climate change concerns.

The four cities for implementing pilot projects will soon be identified through consultations between GEF and Ministry of Urban Development.

GEF is a financial mechanism to support countries in efforts to achieve the goals of United Nations Conventions covering climate change, biodiversity, Ozone layer depletion, land degradation etc.

GEF is also working on an Integrated Program on Sustainable Cities to develop conceptual models on integrated urban design, planning and management for resilient and sustainable development.


States can flexibly use of central assistance of Rs.4,000 per toilet, says Shri Venkaiah Naidu
Parliament Members discuss new urban schemes; suggest assured flow of GST revenue to urban local bodies
Shortcomings of JNNURM reviewed; Shri Naidu outlines new design improvements

Members of the Parliamentary Consultative Committee of the Ministries of Urban Development and Housing & Urban Poverty Alleviation today discussed the shortcomings in the implementation of the Jawaharlal Nehru Urban Renewable Mission (JNNURM) and the improvements being made for better implementation of new urban schemes at a two hour long meeting of the committee.

Minister of Urban Development and HUPA Shri M.Venkaiah Naidu gave a detailed account of the new initiatives and improvements being made in respect of new initiatives. He informed the MPs that states are being given flexibility in designing, resource mobilization and implementation of the new schemes.

Shri Naidu clarified that States and Urban Local Bodies are being extended central assistance of Rs.4,000 per toilet under Swachh Bharat Mission in urban areas and this can be leveraged with other sources like the share of states and urban local bodies, contribution of corporates under CSR, NGOs, private organisations etc., for construction of household toilets.

Shri Venkaiah Naidu informed the MPs that in the light of the experience of implementation of JUUNURM, effective implementation of new schemes is being ensured through assured land availability before sanction of projects, release of funds within 7 days of approval, inclusion of Operation & Maintenance (O&M) expenditure in capital costs, moving to next level of reforms, handholding of urban local bodies, extensive consultations with states and urban local bodies to promote ‘bottom-up’ approach etc.

Expressing concern over financial states of urban local bodies, MPs suggested that flow of some portion of the proposed GST to urban local bodies should be ensured.

Members of Parliament Shri MotilalVora, Shri BhartruhariMahtab, Shri KiritSimaiyya, Shri Vijay Goel, Ms.VandanaChavan, Shri RatanLalKataria, Shri DhananjayBhimraoMahadik, Shri BaburaoVichare, Shri RaghavLakhanpal, Shri ParveshSaheb Singh Verma and Shri Saumitra Khan attended the Parliamentary Consultative meeting.



Union Minister for Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation Sushri Uma Bharati today announced that the Bramhaputra Board will be revived into a new board altogether with new mandate and schemes. The announcement came from the Union Minister while attending the 7 meeting of the High Powered Review Board of Bramhaputra Board held today in Shillong. Sushri Uma Bharati asserted that suggestions and idea for reviving the Board will be taken up from the seven North Eastern states and added that there is a need for new approach to make the board more efficient for the region.

Terming Bramhaputra river as an elder brother, she also said that the ministry has same focus for Bramhaputra river as it has for River Ganga. She said a decision has been taken to constitute a committee for reviving the Board and the committee will suggest necessary steps and measures for reviving the Board. The minister said the Board is not functioning in Assam and therefore a decision has been taken to make the Board more competent and resourceful.

Emphasising that development of the region has to be fast tracked, the minister also advocated that the share of funds between the North East region and Central Government should be on the ratio of 90:10 basis and not 70:30

Meghalaya Chief Minister Dr Mukul Sangma who also attended the meeting said that re-structuring of Board is crucial for the North East region as Bramhaputra river can give a lot of benefits to the people of the region and instances of flood along the mighty river and its tributaries does affect the economy of the people and literally inhabitants are forced to migrate to other areas.

The Union Minister of State for Home Kiren Rijiju who was also present in the meeting said that the North East is water abundant region and stressed on the need to manage water for the region. The water resources ministers of North Easter states, officials from Bramhaputra Board and officials were also present during the meeting.


Sonowal for Urgent Restructuring of Cadre of Sports Authority of India to Streamline its Functioning

Taking serious view of the fact that Sports Authority of India is languishing due to non-availability of Officers and Coaches to man it’s more than 80 Centres spread all over India including North Eastern Region and Andaman & Nicobar Islands, Sports Minister Sarbananda Sonowal has asked the Secretary, Sports who is holding the charge of Director General, Sports Authority of India to expedite restructuring of cadre of Sports Authority of India so as to create atleast nine Regional Centres in the Country and to effectively manage the SAI Centres especially in North Eastern Region and bigger states like Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh etc.

Since its formation in April 1984, Sports Authority of India had undergone many changes and in the studies carried out by Staff Inspection Unit (SIU) of Dept. of Personnel, Govt. of India, also by the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Sports & Youth Affairs and Tata Consultancy Services, many far reaching recommendations were made.

Minister of Youth Affairs and Sports Shri Sonowal took prompt action by repatriating the deputanists against regular posts in SAI and instructing Secretary, Sports to expedite cadre restricting of Sports Authority of India so as to provide promotions to long pending cases and also to stream-line the functioning of Sports Authority of India.

Sports Ministry Revises Rashtriya Khel Protsahan Puruskar Scheme

The Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports has revised the Scheme of Rashtriya Khel Protsahan Puruskar, which was introduced in 2009 to encourage and promote involvement of corporates, sports promotion boards etc., in the promotion and development of sports in the country. In the revised scheme, Rashtriya Khel Protsahan Puruskar will be given in following four categories:

(i)      Identification and nurturing of budding/young talent
(ii)    Encouragement of sports through Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)
(iii)   Employment of sportspersons and sports welfare measures
(iv)  Sports for Development.

In the revised Scheme, eligibility criteria for all four categories have been prescribed.  As ‘Training to promote rural sports, nationally recognized sports, Paralympic sports and Olympic sports’   have been included in the Schedule VII of the Companies Act 2013 and the companies can now spend on promotion and development of sports from the funds earmarked for Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), a specific category for ‘Encouragement of sports through Corporate Social Responsibility’ has been provided for in the revised Scheme.

As non-governmental organizations are also doing a lot of work in promotion and development of sports, a   separate category ‘Sports for Development’ has been provided for exclusively for NGOs to recognize their contributions.

Global Environment Facility (GEF) agrees to take up four pilot projects on sustainable urban practices Global Environment Facility (GEF) agrees to take up four pilot projects on sustainable urban practices Reviewed by Ajit Kumar on 1:33 PM Rating: 5

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