President of India’s message on the eve of Independence Day of Mauritius



President of India’s message on the eve of Independence Day of Mauritius

The President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee has extended his greetings and felicitations to His Excellency Mr. Rajkeswar Purryag, Hon’ble President of the Republic of Mauritius on the eve of its Independence Day (March 12, 2015).


In his message to President Purryag, President Mukherjee has said:

“On behalf of the Government and the people of India and on my own behalf, it gives me great pleasure to extend warm greetings and felicitations to you and to the friendly people of Mauritius on the occasion of the 47th anniversary of the Independence Day of the Republic of Mauritius.

Excellency, this day is not only significant in the history of the political struggle for freedom of both our countries but also symbolises how both India and Mauritius uphold the values of democracy.

We recall with great affection your State Visit to India in January 2013 and my visit to Mauritius in March 2013, which contributed to further enhancing our extraordinary and unique bilateral relations. India and Mauritius enjoy a deep and special relationship based on our historical ties of kinship and shared cultural heritage. I am confident that our close bonds will continue to strengthen in the years ahead to the mutual benefit of our peoples.

Please accept, Excellency, my best wishes for your good health, success and happiness, as well as for the progress and prosperity of the friendly people of the Republic of Mauritius.

With the assurances of my highest consideration”.


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Prime Minister's statement to the Media during his visit to Seychelles

Thank you, President Michel, for your kind words.

I am deeply touched by your extraordinary hospitality and warmth.

I regret that this is a very short visit. I would have loved to stay longer. Anyone who visits this wonderful country will find it hard to leave.

Short it may be, but this visit has been very productive.

It is no surprise that Seychelles is my first destination in the Indian Ocean Region.

We regard Seychelles as a vital partner in our Indian Ocean neighbourhood.

Our relationship is unique and special. It is founded on deep sense of mutual trust and confidence. It is marked by a spirit of respect and equality; and enormous goodwill and warmth.

It draws strength from our shared values of democracy and inclusiveness. It is nurtured by a common purpose - progress of our people and peace and prosperity in the Indian Ocean Region.

Seychelles has made impressive progress. It has shown that size is no barrier to the scale of achievements.

This visit and my conversation with President Michel have reinforced my conviction in the strength and the importance of this relationship.

Our security partnership is strong. It has enabled us to fulfill our shared responsibility to advance maritime security in the region.

It is a privilege to be a partner of Seychelles in the development of its security capabilities.

Today, I am pleased to announce that we will be giving one more Dornier aircraft to Seychelles.

Later today, I will have the honour to launch the Coastal Surveillance Radar Project. This is another symbol of our cooperation.

These steps will enable Seychelles to secure these beautiful islands and the vast expanse of waters around them. Seychelles will also continue to make an enormous contribution to the safety and security of the Indian Ocean Region.

Our agreement today on hydrographic survey adds a new dimension to our maritime cooperation. I thank Seychelles for their confidence in India.

We also hope that Seychelles will soon be a full partner in the maritime security cooperation between India, Maldives and Sri Lanka.

President Michel and I also underlined the importance of comprehensive cooperation in the Indian Ocean Region. We expressed support for a more active and productive Indian Ocean Rim Association.

Our development partnership is also a strong pillar of our relations.

Our agreement today on the development of infrastructure in the Assumption Island gives a strong boost to this partnership.

We are pleased to be a partner in development of human resources and capacity building in Seychelles. Indeed, Seychelles is one of the largest recipients of Indian assistance in this area. We intend to expand this further in the future.

Seychelles is a leader in advancing the concept of Blue Economy. We also believe that the Ocean Economy is indispensable to meeting our future challenges.

Today, President Michel and I have agreed to establish a Joint Working Group to expand our cooperation on the blue economy.

This cooperation will increase our understanding of marine ecology and resources. We will improve our ability to harness new possibilities of the ocean in a sustainable and balanced manner.

This is a major step in advancing our scientific and economic cooperation.

We stressed our support for expansion in our modest trade and investment relations. We are confident that we can achieve it, especially as Seychelles looks to a future in which information technology and services play an increasingly important role.

I also expressed hope that Seychelles would be able to quickly utilize the committed 75 million dollars in grants and credit in accordance with its priorities.

We deeply value the close and warm ties between our people. I welcomed the launch of direct air services to India by Air Seychelles last December.

We have decided to grant free visas for three months to the citizens of Seychelles. We will also extend to you the facility of visa-on-arrival.

I thanked President Michel for his Government`s consistent support to India in international forums. This includes the endorsement for India`s permanent membership of the United Nations Security Council.

We had strong convergence of views on climate change. We are two nations that are vulnerable to its impact. And, we are deeply committed to combating it.

We stressed our shared commitment to strong national action. We also called for a strong and ambitious global effort, especially from the developed world, on climate change.

I reiterated our consistent support to the position of the Small Island Developing States. Equally, I renewed India`s strong commitment to our partnership with Africa.

Our relationship is a powerful example of warm friendship and productive partnership. For India, this relationship means a lot.

This visit has reinforced the special warmth in our ties and taken our strategic partnership to a new level. I am grateful to President Michel and the people of Seychelles for this.

I look forward to the visit of President Michel to India at the earliest.

Thank you.

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Various welfare activities are being undertaken by the Uranium Corporation of India Ltd. in Jaduguda as part of its Corporate Social Responsibility



Uranium Corporation of India Limited (UCIL), a Public Sector Undertaking (PSU) under the Department of Atomic Energy (DAE)undertakes welfare activities through a well-structuredCorporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Program in consultation with local village bodies. The major welfare activities as a part of CSR are as follows:

(i)   Provision of drinking water facilities including installation of new bore wells, repair and maintenance of existing bore-wells, supply of water during local functions/festivals.
(ii)  Imparting vocational training which consists of computer training, agricultural training on modern farming practices,creation of a market for local products, and training villagers in self-employment vocations. One Industrial Training Centre is in operation at Turamdihwhich imparts free vocational training modules of two years for trades related to mechanics, electrical & welding to displacedand other affected persons in the area.
(iii)         Development of infrastructure facilities like community centers, construction & renovation of local school buildings; Repair and maintenance of village roads, bio-gas plant at Bhadudih, irrigation projects, construction of sanitation & other facilities, and boundary walls at tribal worship places.
(iv)         Promotion of sports by construction/renovation of village football grounds, conducting of football & archery coaching camps and promotion of tribal games & arts.
(v)  Provision of Medical Facility by conducting weekly rural medical camps at villages located close to UCIL units and providing free treatment and medicines.  UCIL has established a rural medical centre at Narwapahar.
(vi)         Education: Construction of school buildings, improvement of sanitation in schools, providing furniture, computers etc. at schools, providing free education to economically disadvantaged children through talent nurture scheme.

The expenditure incurred in the welfare activities during last 3 years and the current year is shown below:



The total employment of local persons in UCIL is 2777 which consists of 41       Executives 2736 Non-executives.

This information was provided by MoS in the Prime Minister’s Office and Minister of State in the Ministry of Personnel, PG & Pensions, DrJitendra Singh in a reply to an unstarred question in Lok Sabha today.


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India stands seventh in number of reactors in operation and fourteenth in terms of net installed capacity among countries with nuclear power

At present India stands seventh in number of reactors in operation and fourteenth in terms of net installed capacity among countries with nuclear power. It is third in number of reactors under construction and sixth in terms of net capacity under construction.

India has developed comprehensive capabilities in all aspects of nuclear power including siting, design, construction, commissioning, operation & maintenance, renovation &modernisation and life extension of nuclear power plants.

Its safety record over 45 years of operation has been impeccable with no accident or instance of release of radioactivity in the public domain beyond stipulated limits. Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited (NPCIL)’s reactors have been operated consistently at high Availability Factors and demonstrated operation at high Plant Load Factors. In terms of continuous operation, NPCIL reactors have operated for more than a year seventeen times with one reactor, Rajasthan Atomic Power Station Unit 5 (RAPS-5) setting a record of 765 days of continuous operation, second largest in the world. The nuclear power programme will continue to be pursued to add more capacity in future.

This information was provided by MoS in the Prime Minister’s Office and Minister of State in the Ministry of Personnel, PG & Pensions, DrJitendra Singh in a reply to an unstarred question in Lok Sabha today.

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77.89Ku band transponders are being used by Indian DTH operators for DTH services

A total of 77.89 (36 MHz equivalent) Ku band transponders are used by Indian DTH operators for DTH services. Out of a total of 77.89 transponders, 19 transponders are in INSAT/GSAT satellites and 58.89 leased from foreign satellites.

The DTH service providers are using foreign satellites since sufficient capacity of Ku Band transponders is not available in INSAT/GSAT satellites.

The commercial, societal and defence service users have been using their allocated capacity as per their usage plan subject to receipt of regulatory approvals.

The allocation process is in progress for about 46 transponders (in C, Extended-C and Ku Bands), which are vacant at present.

This information was provided by MoS in the Prime Minister’s Office and Minister of State in the Ministry of Personnel, PG & Pensions, Dr Jitendra Singh in a reply to an unstarred question in Lok Sabha today.

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Export of Spices


The export details of spices for the last three years are given below:


The major item-wise export details of spices for the last three years are given below:

Item-wise details of total spices export for the last three years


(1) INCLUDE BISHOPS WEED(AJWANSEED), DILL SEED, POPPY SEED,   ANISEED, MUSTARD ETC.

 (2) INCLUDE  ASAFOETIDA, CINNAMON, CASSIA, CAMBODGE, SAFFRON, SPICES (NES)  ETC.

 (3) INCLUDE MENTHOL, MENTHOL CRYSTALS AND MINT OILS.

 SOURCE: DGCI&S., CALCUTTA/SHIPPING BILLS/EXPORTERS' RETURNS.


The Government has implemented various programmes for development of exports of spices viz. development of Infrastructure for common processing facilities including Spices Parks, trade promotion activities including participation in international fairs, promotion of Indian spice brands, product development & research for exporters, study of markets abroad, certification of Spice Houses, setting up quality evaluation laboratories for promoting Indian Spices and Spice Products. Following these efforts, the Spices Board has received international recognition as chair of the Codex Committee on Spices and Culinary Herbs (CCSCH) set up by the Codex Alimentarius Commission.  The Secretariat of the CCSCH functions in the Spices Board.

This information was given by the Minister of State (Independent Charge) in the Ministry of Commerce & Industry Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman in a written reply in Rajya Sabha today.

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Revision of Tea Act, 1953

The Tea Act was enacted in 1953 with the objective of controlling the tea industry pursuant to relevant International agreements and developing the industry as well as production and marketing of tea. As the tea sector has undergone several changes since inception of the Tea Act, 1953, the Law Commission, in its 159th Report has, inter alia, recommended amendment of the Tea Act, 1953.

The Government has taken up an exercise for consulting stakeholders and obtaining their interests and views on the amendments to the Tea Act, 1953. The interest of small growers and just price for their produce is taken into account in course of these consultations.

This information was given by the Minister of State (Independent Charge) in the Ministry of Commerce & Industry Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman in a written reply in Rajya Sabha today.

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Make In India’ Programme

Government of India has launched the ‘Make in India’ Programme to promote manufacturing in India and develop it as a hub for manufacturing, design and innovation Certain important steps taken to gear up manufacturing include (i) creation of an investor facilitation cell (ii) dissemination of information on twenty five priority sectors on ‘Make in India’s web-portal (http://www.makeinindia.com) along with details of FDI Policy, National Manufacturing Policy, Intellectual Property Rights, Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor and other National Industrial Corridors (iii) issuance of Ordinance to make land acquisition easier for important projects (iv) a number of items taken off the licensing requirement from Defence products’ list, etc. and (v) Sector wise plan of action has been prepared with time lines of one year and three years.

Government has undertaken a number of steps to improve Ease of Doing Business in India. A large number of components of Defence Products’ list have been excluded from the purview of Industrial Licensing. The application process for Industrial Licence and Industrial Entrepreneur’s Memorandum has been made easy by simplification of forms and making the process online 24x7. The validity period of the Industrial Licence and security clearance from Ministry of Home Affairs has been increased. The process of registration with Employees’ Provident Fund Organization and Employees’ State Insurance Corporation has been made on line and real-time. Process of obtaining environment and forest clearances has been made online. The Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion has advised Ministries and State Governments to simplify and rationalize the regulatory environment through business process reengineering and use of information technology. 14 Government of India services have been integrated with the eBiz portal.

As an outcome of the recently concluded visit of the Prime Minister of India to Japan, a special management team has been set up to facilitate and fast track investment proposals from Japan. Government has also constituted a Core Group under the chairmanship of Cabinet Secretary on India-Japan Investment Promotion Partnership. Some Japanese companies have shown their interest to invest in India.

In the Budget for 2015-16, measures have been announced to set right the inverted duty structure on a range of items, reduce tax on labour intensive leather sector and provide impetus to start – ups, venture funds and entrepreneurship.

This information was given by the Minister of State (Independent Charge) in the Ministry of Commerce & Industry Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman in a written reply in Rajya Sabha today.

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SCs/STs Employed in SEZs



A statement showing State/UT-wise details of operational Special Economic Zones (SEZs) is given below.



There are 104 Scheduled Castes (SCs) and 30 Scheduled Tribes (STs) employees working in the office of the Seven Central Government Special Economic Zones (SEZs).

The reservation policy of the Government on employment of SCs/STs is followed in the Seven Central Government Special Economic Zones (SEZs).
This information was given by the Minister of State (Independent Charge) in the Ministry of Commerce & Industry Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman in a written reply in Rajya Sabha today.

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Bilateral Trade with U.S. Vis-a-Vis China


Details of bilateral trade between India and US and India and China during the last 3 years and current year (up to January, 2015) are as under:
(in US $ million)



The above statistics reveals that there is less trade between India and US as compared to India and China;

In order to improve investors confidence to realize the full potential of trade and commercial relations trade relations, India and USA continuously interact through two Institutional Mechanisms of India-US Trade Policy Forum and India-US Commercial Dialogue for enhancing trade and commercial relations. During the recently held 8th India US Trade Policy Forum in New Delhi in November, 2014, a range of issues including Market Access issues relating to Agriculture products, Services and Investment issues including Totalisation Agreement, Promoting Investment in Manufacturing were discussed and in the elevated India-US Commercial Dialogue, both sides have agreed in expanding the Dialogue and exploring new areas of cooperation, including Investment Promotion and SEZs; Building Capacities and Institutional Linkages between Premier Institutions especially in the field of Technical Textiles, sharing best practices and exploring technologies related to corrosion prevention and control and encouraging the private sector to work with the governments on roundtables to promote innovation in advanced manufacturing.
India and US have planned to work through several joint initiatives to facilitate greater confidence in cross-border trade and investment. During the visit of PM to USA last year, both the countries agreed on boosting two-way trade to $ 500 billion from $100 billion.  Also, during the recent visit of US President to India both sides agreed on many important deals and committed that the two nations will be partners in economic progress.


This information was given by the Minister of State (Independent Charge) in the Ministry of Commerce & Industry Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman in a written reply in Rajya Sabha today.

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US Investments in India

The President of the USA visited India during January 25-27, 2015. However, data regarding foreign direct investment from USA to India is available up to December, 2014. As per data provided by Reserve Bank of India, FDI equity inflows from USA to India are as under:

(i) FDI equity inflows from USA to India during the period (April – December) 2014 = US $ 1.47 billion

(ii) FDI equity inflows from USA to India during the period April 2000 – December 2014 = US $ 13.4 billion.

This information was given by the Minister of State (Independent Charge) in the Ministry of Commerce & Industry Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman in a written reply in Rajya Sabha today.

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Impact of PM'S Global Visits on Investment Climate

Prime Minister’s visits to foreign countries, both for bilateral and multilateral meetings have had a positive impact on India’s prestige, power and investment climate.

Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) are made by companies based on their assessment of prevailing market conditions, future prospects and other related factors. In view of this, it would not be possible to set any target for FDI into the country.

The statistical details of FDI into the country from April 2000 till December 2014 are indicated in the table below:

FINANCIAL YEAR-WISE FDI INFLOWS DATA AS PER INTERNATIONAL BEST PRACTICES

                                                                                                     (Amount in US$ million)



(P) - Figures are provisional



This information was given by the Minister of State (Independent Charge) in the Ministry of Commerce & Industry Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman in a written reply in Rajya Sabha today.

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Promoting Export by Pharmaceutical Manufacturers


For technology up-gradation to Micro and Small Enterprises in the pharma sector, Ministry of Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises (MSME) is running Credit Linked Capital Subsidy Scheme (CLCSS) under which Micro and Small Enterprises are entitled to take loan up to Rs. 1.00 crore with 15% subsidy.


Drugs for sale or for export are manufactured under license granted by State Licensing Authorities appointed by State governments.  Central Drugs Standard Control Organization (CDSCO) has not received any such information that majority of small pharmaceutical manufacturers are doing job work/contract work for bigger pharmaceutical units which export the same under their brand name.

Some of the measures taken by the Government to promote exports by small and   medium Pharmaceutical manufacturers are:

i)                   Financial assistance through Pharmexcil, an Export Promotion Council, is provided under Market Development Assistance and Market Access Initiative Schemes to exporters of Pharmaceutical products particularly small and medium size exporters to promote their exports in various countries.

ii)                 Trade Delegations/Buyer Seller Meets (BSMs) to various countries are organized, where One-to-One meetings with local buyers/importers, FDA/Regulatory officials are arranged for the benefit of exporters.

iii)          Participate in International exhibitions and assist small and medium scale companies by way of providing space in those exhibitions at reasonable costs.

iv)          Business Meets are organized in India by inviting buyers/importers/FDA officials to India and one-to-one meetings are arranged.  These meets help the industry, particularly small and medium exporters.

v)            Pharmexcil organizes its own Expo in India viz. IPHEX every year, which is helping the small and medium exporters.

vi)         Pharmexcil has separate Cells/desks for IPR and AYUSH sector to help the small and medium exporters.

vii)       Incentives to Pharmaceutical industry are available in various trade promotion schemes like Focus Market Scheme, Focus Product Scheme, Advance Authorization Scheme etc. in the Foreign Trade Policy (FTP) which also helps the Small and Medium exporters for promoting their exports.
(viii)  India Brand Pharma Campaign launched since March, 2012 promotes quality, affordable & reliability of Indian medicines.


This information was given by the Minister of State (Independent Charge) in the Ministry of Commerce & Industry Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman in a written reply in Rajya Sabha today.

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President of India’s message on the eve of Independence Day of Mauritius President of India’s message on the eve of Independence Day of Mauritius Reviewed by Ajit Kumar on 5:36 PM Rating: 5

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