The Auction of Spectrum

The Auction of Spectrum in 2015 in 2100 MHz, 1800 MHz, 900 MHz And 800 MHz Bands Continues

11 Rounds of Bidding Completed at the End of Day 2
            The Auction of Spectrum in 2100 MHz, 1800 MHz, 900 MHz and 800 MHz Bands re- commenced today at 09.00 A.M. and today 5 rounds of bidding were completed. Till now, 11 rounds of bidding has taken place.

            The bidding has taken place in all bands. At present, a value of approximately Rs. 65000 crores has been committed by bidders in respect of provisionally won spectrum. There is still spectrum, which is yet to be sold. Bidding would recommence tomorrow i.e.06-03-2015 at 9AM.
    Click here to see Report:             


The Auction of Spectrum in 2015 in 2100 MHz, 1800 MHz, 900 MHz and 800 MHz Bands Continues

6 Rounds of Bidding Completed at the end of day 1

          The Auction of Spectrum in 2100 MHz, 1800 MHz, 900 MHz and 800 MHz Bands began today.  It commenced today morning at 09.00 A.M. and during the day six rounds of bidding were completed.

          The bidding has taken place in all bands. At present, a value of approximately Rs. 60, 000 crores has been committed by bidders against the value (at reserve price) of around 49,000 crores of provisionally won spectrum. There is still spectrum, which is yet to be sold. Bidding would recommence tomorrow i.e.05-03-2015 at 9AM.

          Click here for detailed file.             


There will be no cut in the coverage of National Food Security Act –Shri Ram Vilas Paswan 

Shri Ram Vilas Paswan, Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution has said that the Government has decided not to accept the recommendation of High Level Committee on restructuring of FCI regarding cut in the coverage of the National Food Security Act. He clarified that beneficiary coverage at the level of 67 percent as provided by the Nations Food Security Act would continue. He said his Ministry has submitted its views to the Prime Minister’s office regarding all the recommendations of the committee. 

Addressing the media here today, Shri Ram Vilas Paswan said that his Ministry has already taken several steps to improve the management of foodgrains. As a result of timely allocations of foodgrains and efficient open market sale policy now there is no old stocks piling up in FCI godowns. After the current month no stock more than one year old will be in FCI godowns. The Minister said that FCI has also been directed to ensure that movement of foodgrains from CAP storage should be made within six months to avoid any damage. 

The Minister said that the Government has allocated more budget to the ongoing schemes of Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution. This will certainly help in modernization of Public Distribution System and to augment Consumer Protection Mechanism. 

He said that end to end computerization Scheme of the Department will get major boost as Budget allocation in the FY 2015-16 is 80 crore while according to Revised Budget Estimates for FY 2014-15 it was Rs. 35 crores. Similarly, allocation for Warehousing Development and Regulatory Authority for 2015-16 is Rs 30 crore, significant increase from Rs.13.81 of the Revised Estimates for 2014-15. The Budget for Strengthening of quality control mechanism for non-building assets has also been increased to Rs. 5 crore from Rs. 3.50 crore. Sugar Development Fund of the Department has also got more allocation in the budget which is Rs. 500 crore while was Rs. 396.45 crore in the Revised Estimates of 2014-15.. 

He said that allocation for Consumer Protection Activities and programmes have been more than doubled. Allocation for FY 2015-16 is Rs. 43.00 crores while allocation for the same was Rs. 17.72 crores in the Revised Budget Estimates for FY 2014-15.Bureau of India Standards, which is almost a self finance autonomous body of the Ministry working in the area of Standardization and quality control has also been got almost double allocation in the budget from RE of 2014-15. Total plan Budget of the Department of Consumer Affairs has been proposed to Rs. 180.00 crores in the Budget while in the Revised Estimates of 2014-15 it was 140.00 crores. 

Shri Paswan expressed the hope that with these increased allocations, activities of both the Departments of the Ministry will strengthen. 


India Reaches out to Nepal to Help Clear Blocked Runway 

In a fantastic display of coordination and synchronization between the Indian Air Force (IAF), Ministry of Defence (MoD) and Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), an Accident Recovery Kit was airlifted from Delhi to Kathmandu to remove the Turkish Airlines airbus that blocked the runway at Kathmandu following a landing accident. 

The request for assistance was received at about 1900 hrs at Air HQs on 04 Mar 15. The Operations Staff at Air HQ and at the Hindan based C-130J Unit swung into action and planning continued till late in the night. In the wee hours of 05 Mar 15, the Accident Recovery Kit had already been brought in by Air India from Mumbai to Delhi and by 0515 hrs, the loading of the kit into the C-130J had started. Whilst the loading was underway, the technical crew of Air India arrived from Mumbai by flight. The customs and immigration formalities of these personnel was organized by the Air Force authorities at Palam. 

The synchronization between the various elements of the government machinery worked to such perfection that the C-130J was airborne at 1107 hrs for Kathmandu, with 7.5 Tone of load and 11 technical crew from Air India. 

The C-130J was chosen for the mission not only because of its load carrying capacity and range but also its capability to land on restricted surfaces. The usable runway length at Kathmandu had been reduced to only about 5000 ft, which made it impossible for any commercial aircraft to land. 

The operation not only highlights the efficiency of the government machinery but also the government’s resolve to help friendly foreign nations in distress. 


Gross Direct Tax Collection during April-February of the Financial Year 2014-15 is up by 10.67 Percent 
at Rs. 6,12,432 Crore as against Rs. 5,53,373 Crore during the same period Last Year 

Gross direct tax collections during April-February of the Financial Year 2014-15 is up by 10.67 percent at Rs. 6,12,432 crore as against Rs. 5,53,373 crore collected during the same period last year. Gross direct tax collection of Corporate tax has shown an increase of 9.99 percent and stood at Rs. 3,79,917 crore as against Rs. 3,45,396 crore collected during the same period last year. Gross collection of Personal income tax is up by 11.10 percent and stood at Rs.22,53,13 crore as against Rs.2,02,806 crore collected during the same period last year. Securities Transaction Tax (STT) stands at Rs. 6280 crore at a growth of 45.44%. Net direct tax collections are up by 6.88 percent and stand at Rs. 5,06,765 crore, as compared to Rs. 4,74,146 crore in the same period in the last fiscal. 

Advance tax collection has shown a growth of 13.41% during April-February of the FY 2014-15 as against the growth of 8.67% shown at the same time previous year. Growth in TDS is 7.49% as against 16.69% in the same period last year. 

The Self-Assessment Tax shows a growth of 22.50% as against 9.91% in the same period last year. The growth in Regular Tax is 9.09% as against 29.97 % in the same period last year. 


Health Secretary launches Public Service Advertisement and Poster on Tobacco Control featuring Shri Rahul Dravid 

The Secretary (Health and Family Welfare), Shri B P Sharma launched Public Service Advertisements and poster on tobacco control featuring India’s ambassador for tobacco control, Shri Rahul Dravid, here today. The advertisements and posters have been prepared by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, and the World Health Organization Country Office for India (WHO), in collaboration with the Public Health Foundation of India (PHFI) and HRIDAY. 

Speaking on the occasion the Secretary thanked Shri Rahul Dravid for his endorsement to the cause. He said that the association of Shri Rahul Dravid with this cause will inspire the youth of the country to stay away from tobacco products. He said that the growing number of youth and women consuming tobacco in some form is a cause of grave concern, and the anti-tobacco campaigns need to target them. 

The anti-tobacco campaign featuring Shri Rahul Dravid is an effort by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare to reach out to millions of young and potential tobacco users to encourage them to refrain from the deadly habit of tobacco use. According to the Report of Tobacco Control in India (2004), nearly 8-9 lakh people die every year due to diseases related to tobacco use in India. About 50% of all cancers in men and 25% of all cancers in women can be attributed to tobacco use. It is estimated that about 90% of all the oral cancers are caused due to smokeless tobacco use. 

The Global Adult Tobacco Survey – India (GATS) conducted by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare shows that 35% of the adults in the age group of 15 years and above consume tobacco in some form or the other, with 48% men and 20% women consume tobacco in some form. Smokeless tobacco is the most-prevalent form of tobacco use in India within the lower socioeconomic groups and women. GATS found that more than 20 crore Indians use smokeless tobacco. 

The audio and visual advertisements, in Hindi and English, along with the posters will be used to create awareness regarding the harmful effects of tobacco use through TV, radio, at schools, community spaces, railway compartments, and social media. Also present at the launch function were the DGHS, Dr. Jagdish Prasad, Additional Secretary and Mission Director (NHM), Shri C K Mishra, representatives from WHO and senior officials of the Ministry. 


Health Ministry to celebrate International Women’s Day as ‘Safe Motherhood Day’: Shri J P Nadda 

Three-day long nationwide initiative to improve women’s health 

In a major initiative towards ensuring better health for women of the country, a three-day special nationwide campaign is being launched by the Union Health and Family Welfare Ministry from 8-10 March, 2015. 

The Union health and Family Welfare Minister Shri J P Nadda stated, “Under the initiative, special health check-up camps will be held at the District Hospitals, Sub-district Hospitals (SDHs) and Community Health Centers (CHCs) on three days, on 8th, 9th and 10th March 2015. These will offer free of charge health check-up to all women, including pregnant women across the country.” 

“We are committed to better health of women of the country and this initiative will go a long way in helping us reach this objective,” the Minister said. “The Ministry of Health & Family Welfare is organising various activities to mark the International Women’s Day (8th March 2015) as its commitment to women’s health,” Shri Nadda added. 

“The CHCs/SDHs/District Hospitals will screen and carry out necessary investigation, as needed, of all the women who visit during the three days and treatment, if required, shall be provided free of cost. All women aged 40-60 years will be screened for breast cancer and between 30-60 years for cervical cancer,” the Minister said. 

The Minister further stated that antenatal and postnatal care services will also be provided and Mother and Child Protection (MCP) cards will be issued to the women. Identified high risk pregnant women will be flagged on the MCP cards. If needed, such cases will be referred to higher level health facilities. Family Planning services will also be offered free of cost at the camps. The women will be counseled on birth preparedness, danger signs during pregnancy, nutrition, institutional delivery and Post-Partum Family Planning (PPFP), care during pregnancy and postnatal care, breastfeeding and complementary feeding, importance of nutrition including iron-folic acid consumption and calcium supplementation, importance of institutional delivery, identification of referral transport, entitlements under Janani Suraksha Yojana (JSY) and Janani Shishu Suraksha Karyakram (JSSK). 

In New Delhi, such health check-up camps are also being organized at Dr. RML and Safdarjung hospitals, the Health Minister informed. 

In addition, one ASHA will be felicitated in each Block in the States for her contribution to women’s empowerment and community healthcare. 


Shri Amarnathji Yatra from 2nd July to 29th August, 2015 

The process of registration of pilgrims for Shri Amarnathji Yatra 2015 has started.  Shri Amarnathji Shrine Board chaired by the Governor, Jammu and Kashmir has issued following procedure for registration of yatris through bank:-

·        This year’s Shri Amarnathji Yatra will commence on 2nd July, 2015, via both the routes Baltal and Pahalgram, and conclude on 29th August, 2015.

·        Registration is necessary for the Yatri.

·        Nobody, shall be allowed to undertake the Yatra without Yatra Permit which is valid for the day and route in question.

·        A Yatri can secure his / her Yatra Permit via selected bank branches (87 of J&K Bank, 305 Punjab National Bank and 38 of YES Bank) located in various States / UTs.

·        The addresses of the selected Bank Branches, for providing Registration are available at Shri Amarnathji Shrine Board’s website:

·        The Registration for the Yatra 2015, via selected Bank Branches, has commenced from 01st March, 2015.

·        For Registration / obtaining a Yatra Permit through a designated Bank, an intending Yatri shall have to submit filled-in prescribed Application Form and Compulsory Health Certificate issued by the Authorised Doctor / Reputed Private Medical Institution.

·        The State-wise list of Doctors / reputed private Medical Institutions authorized to issue the prescribed Compulsory Health Certificate are available at Shri Amarnathji Shrine Board’s website:

·        For Yatra 2015, Compulsory Health Certificate issued only after 10th February, 2015, would be valid for the registration purposes.

·        An intending Yatri will be required to pay Rs.50/- as Registration fee, for registration through a designated Bank.

·        A Yatri who travels by Helicopter will not be required to separately register for the Yatra.

·        A Yatri who travels by Helicopter will, however, be required to submit the prescribed Compulsory Health Certificate at the time of boarding the Helicopter.

·        A Yatri should embark on his / her Yatra only on the day and from the route for which he / she is registered.

·        Please visit Board’s website: to know how an ex-India pilgrim can register himself / herself for the Yatra.

·        A group of five or more Yatris can also register themselves through the Group Registration Facility.

·        Please visit Board’s website: to know how to register through Group Registration Facility.


Swachh Vidyalaya Abhiyan 

The Ministry of Human Resource Development has launched Swachh Vidyalaya Programme under Swachh Bharat Mission with an objective to provide separate toilets for boys and girls in all government schools within one year. The Ministry financially supports States/Union Territories inter alia to provide toilets for girls and boys in schools under Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) and Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RMSA). Under SSA and RMSA 88,728 toilets have been sanctioned during 2014-15. 1.58 lakh toilets as well as dysfunctional toilets have been taken up by Public Sector Undertakings/Corporates for construction/repairs. Besides an amount of Rs. 56.51crore has been allocated from the Swachh Bharat Kosh for re-construction/repairs of the dysfunctional toilets. 

This information was given by the Union Human Resource Development Minister, Smt. Smriti Irani in a written reply to the Lok Sabha question. 


History of North East in NCERT Curriculum 

The University Grant Commission (UGC) has advised the Universities to incorporate the followings in the university curriculum:
(I)     (i)   Novels/Short stories from the North East;
(ii) History of North East including personalities who participated in anti-colonial uprisings as well as freedom movement;
(II)  Students from the other part of the country to spend some time in the North East so as to understand and appreciate culture of the area. Besides, regular cultural exchange between institutions in the North East and other areas be built in higher education system in the universities; and
(III)            The North East Zone Cultural Centre, an autonomous body of the Ministry of Culture also organizes various programmes under its scheme namely, National Cultural Exchange Programme (NCEP) for awareness about the culture of the North Eastern Region.

Content about various aspects of the North Eastern Region have already been included in the textbooks of Social Sciences such as History, Geography and Political Science published by National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) viz History classes-VII,IX,X and XII, Geography classes: VI to XII, Political Science classes: VI,VIII to XII. 
This information was given by the Union Human Resource Development Minister, Smt. Smriti Irani in a written reply to the Lok Sabha question.


Education to Minorities 

The Government has been implementing various minority education schemes especially for Muslims. A total of 15% of the outlay under the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan is targeted for the Minority Concentration Districts (MCD)/Areas to achieve the goal of universalisation of elementary education, to meet infrastructure gaps for schools, classrooms, teachers and providing access by opening new schools. Other initiatives which also benefit minorities and Muslims include the Scheme for Providing Quality Education in Madarsas (SPQEM), the Scheme of Infrastructure Development in Minority Institutions (IDMI), the Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya Scheme (JNV), setting up of Girls Hostels, Model Schools under the Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RMSA), the Mid-Day-Meal Scheme, Jan Shikshan Sansthan (JSS), establishment of the Model Degree Colleges, Women Hostels and Polytechnics in the Minority Concentration Districts. Setting up of Block Institutes of Teacher Education, Appointment of Language Teachers, providing modern education to Madarasas under National Institute of Open Schooling and the easing of norms for affiliation of Minority Educational Institutions, are some of the important initiatives undertaken by the Government.

The achievements made under the affirmative interventions under various schemes for promotion of education of the minorities have been quite encouraging. Trends indicate consistent increase in the enrolment of Muslim children at the elementary level. The enrolment of Muslim children at Primary level as a percentage of total enrolment has increased from 9.4% in 2006-07 to 14.2% in 2012-13, and at the Upper Primary level, the enrolment has increased from 7.2% to 12.1% during the same period. This has induced the Govt. to further intensify its continued efforts for the promotion of education of the minorities, especially of Muslims. 

The University Grants Commission is implementing the following schemes for minority communities in Central Universities during XI and XII Plan:-

i)               Centre for Professional Development of Urdu Medium Teachers in three central universities.
ii)              Establishment of Residential Coaching Academy for Minorities, SC/ST and Women in four Central Universities and one in Deemed University.
iii)            Establishment of Satellite Campus for undergraduate, Postgraduate, Programmes in Arabic and Persian.
iv)            Establishment of two Campuses of Aligarh Muslim University.
v)             Establishment of Model School, Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs), B.Ed. Colleges, Polytechnics under the ambit of Maulana Azad National Urdu University.
vi)            Since 2009, the UGC has been implementing the scheme of Maulana Azad National Fellowship for Minority Students which is being funded by Ministry of Minority Affairs, Govt. of India. Under this scheme, the UGC provides financial assistance to selected candidates belonging to minority communities for pursuing M.Phil./Ph.D. research in University/College/Institution and Non-Institutions in the country.

The other schemes of UGC from which Minorities can benefit are:-

(i)             Remedial Coaching For SC/ST/OBC (Non-Creamy Layer) and Minority Community Students
(ii)           Coaching For NET/SET for SC/ST/OBC (Non-Creamy Layer) &Minority  Community Students
(iii)          Coaching Classes for Entry into Services for SC/ST/OBC (Non Creamy Layer) and Minority Community Students
(iv)         Coaching Scheme for Residential Academies for Minorities/SC/ST and Women.
Bottom of Form

In all the Scholarship/Fellowship Schemes, 30% of the physical targets are earmarked for girl students. The annual physical targets for fresh scholarships/ fellowships are distributed State/UT-wise and Community-wise on the basis of their minority community population as per 2001 census. These are Central Sector Schemes with 100% Central funding.

The Department of Financial Services has provided the list of Minority Concentration Districts to all the Scheduled/Commercial Banks who have been asked to ensure that the minority communities receive a fair and equitable portion of credit within the overall target of the priority sector.  Pursuant to the Cabinet decision in June, 2007, the Public Sector Banks have been advised by the Government to step up their Minority Community Lending (MCL) to 15% of their Priority Sector Lending (PSL). Loans to individuals for educational purposes including vocational courses upto Rs.10.00 lakh for studies in India and Rs.20.00 lakh for studies abroad are covered under Priority Sector lending. Thus, minority community students are benefitted from the provisions of 15% of PSL to Minority Communities.

This information was given by the Union Human Resource Development Minister, Smt. Smriti Irani in a written reply to the Lok Sabha question.


Press Communique on Appointment of a Judge of the J&K High Court 

In exercise of the powers conferred by section 95 of the Constitution of Jammu and Kashmir, the President is pleased to appoint Shri Justice Janak Raj Kotwal, Additional Judge of the Jammu and Kashmir High Court, to be a Judge of the Jammu and Kashmir High Court with effect from the date he assumes charge of his office. 


Signing of MOA Between NRDC and CCRAS 

National Research Development Corporation (NRDC), under the Ministry of Science and Technology, Govt of India signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with Central Council for Research in Ayurvedic Sciences, (CCRAS), an autonomous organisation under the Department of AYUSH, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare for commercialization of the technologies developed at CCRAS. The scope of the MOA also includes providing Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) services to CCRAS in India and abroad. CCRAS is an Apex Body in India constituted for the formulation, co-ordination, development and promotion of research in Ayurveda on scientific lines. 

The MOA was signed by Chairman and Managing Director, NRDC Dr H.Purushotham and Director General, CCRAS Prof. Abhimanyu Kumar in the presence of Chief, NRDC, Shri A. Pradhan and other senior officers from CCRAS and NRDC. 

Speaking on the occasion, CMD, NRDC Dr H.Purushotham, stated that NRDC has already transferred more than 10 technologies developed at CCRAS to more than 50 entrepreneurs/Industry which has helped both the organisations to earn a substantial amount of revenue . He was happy to inform that a number of Ayurvedic Medicines developed at CCRAS and commercialized by NRDC and are available to the public for the treatment of different diseases at an affordable price like Anti Malarial drug, Balrasayan,tonic for children,etc.

Commenting on the signing of the MOA, Prof. Abhimanyu Kumar, Director General, CCRAS appreciated the dedicated efforts made by NRDC for transferring a number of technologies developed at the different laboratories of CCRAS to a number of organisations in India. 


Railways to implement SOPs for restoration/rehabilitation of helpless children in contact with Railways 

Implementation of SOPs an historic moment for welfare of these children: Smt Maneka Sanjay Gandhi 

A Conference on ‘Protecting Rights of Vulnerable Children in Contact with Railways’ was organized by the National commission for Protection of Child Rights on its 8th Foundation Day in New Delhi today. The Conference was inaugurated by the Union Minister of Women and Child Development, Smt. Maneka Sanjay Gandhi. 

Speaking on the occasion, the Minister said that there are there are at least 5-6 lakh children who either use railways or arrive on railway stations, and are either runaway or abandoned or trafficked and are in need of assistance. The Minister said that the Ministry of Women and Child Development and the Ministry of Railways have developed Special Operating Procedures (SOPs) to be implemented by Railways to ensure care and protection of such children in contact with railways.20 railway stations have already started implementing these SOPs, the Minister added. Smt Maneka Gandhi termed the implementation of these SOPs as an historic moment in the field of child welfare. The Minister elaborated that these railway stations will have NGOs/Child Help Groups working with them who will work for restoration of children to their parents/guardians or their rehabilitation in absence of the former. These stations will also help Child Help Desk/kiosk/Booths with a telephone facility to call child helpline 1098. 

The Minister appealed to the NGOs to come forward to partner with more and more such railway stations for restoration and rehabilitation of children. She also urged the train passengers and other people to alert the authorities if they come across any child in need of help. For this, a large awareness campaign is being launched by NCPCR comprising of signages in coaches, announcements and other audio-video material, she said. The Minister said that 1 lakh such signages will be put out in coaches. 

Finally, the Minister asked the NCPCR to work out a programme, along the lines of STEP(for women), of training those children who are not restored to their parents to enable them to acquire skills to be able to gradually earn their livelihood . 

Member, Railway Board, Shri Pradeep Kumar said that Railways is willing to offer all help possible to assist all children in contact with Railways. He hoped that railways will be able to expand the list of stations where the SOPs have become operational beyond the initial 20,if more NGOs come forward to work for them. 

The Minister also released the booklet on SOPs on the occasion. 

Senior officials of NCPCR, Railways, NGOs and States attended the Conference. 
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