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2013 - October 1 to 12 - Current Affairs


International

The Gambian Government on 2 October 2013 announced that it is pulling out of the Commonwealth with immediate effect. Gambian, a West African country joined the Commonwealth of Nations in 1965. 

The Gambian also stated that it will never be a member of any neo-colonial institution and will never be a party to any institution that represents an extension of colonialism. The decision came after the Government rejected a proposal by the Commonwealth in 2012 to create commissions in Banjul (capital of Gambia) to protect human rights, media rights and fight against corruption. 

The last country to be withdrawn from the Commonwealth group was Zimbabwe in 2003. 

About the Commonwealth: The Commonwealth of Nations is a voluntary association of 54 countries, many of them former territories of the British Empire. It was established in 1949. 

Member countries: Fifty-four countries are members of the Commonwealth. These Countries are from Africa, Asia, the Americas, Europe and the Pacific and are diverse – they are amongst the world’s largest, smallest, richest and poorest countries. Thirty-two of our members are classified as small states – countries with a population size of 1.5million people or less and larger member states that share similar characteristics with them. Leaders of member countries shape Commonwealth policies and priorities. Every two years, they meet to discuss issues affecting the Commonwealth and the wider world at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM). All members have an equal say regardless of size or economic stature. This ensures even the smallest member countries have a voice in shaping the Commonwealth. The last two countries to join The Commonwealth - Rwanda and Mozambique - have no historical ties to the British Empire. 

About Gambia: The Republic of the Gambia, also commonly known as Gambia is a country in West Africa. It is surrounded by Senegal, apart from a short strip of Atlantic coastline at its western end. It is the smallest country on mainland Africa. Banjul is the Gambia’s capital. Gambia is a republic and its current President is Yahya Jammeh. 



Every year from 1991 onwards on 1 October is observed as the International Day of Older Persons. The day celebrated every year to recognise the contributions of older persons in the society and examines the issues that affect their lives. 

The theme of the 2013 International Day of Older Persons day is the future we want: what older persons are saying. World-wide there are around 600 million persons aged 60 years and above. It will double by 2025 and will reach virtually two billion by 2050.The vast majority of them living in the developing world. 

About the International Day of Older Persons: 
• United Nations General Assembly (by resolution 45/106) designated 1 October the International Day of Older Persons in 1990. 
• This was preceded by initiatives such as the Vienna International Plan of Action on ageing which was adopted by the 1982 World Assembly on Ageing. 



The United Nations food agencies (Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the World Food Programme (WFP)) released a report on "The State of Food Insecurity in the World" on 1 October 2013. It highlighted that Some 842 million people or roughly one in eight suffered from chronic hunger in 2011-13 not getting enough food to lead active and healthy lives. 

Highlights of the State of Food Insecurity in the World report: 

• A total of 842 million people in 2011–13 or around one in eight people in the world were estimated to be suffering from chronic hunger, regularly not getting enough food to conduct an active life. This ¬figure is lower than the 868 million reported with reference to 2010–12. The total number of undernourished has fallen by 17 percent since 1990–92. 

• The vast majority of hungry people 827 million live in developing regions where the prevalence of undernourishment is now estimated at 14.3 percent where as 15.7 million people live in developed countries. 

• While the estimated number of undernourished people has continued to decrease, the rate of progress appears insufficient to reach international goals for hunger reduction in developing regions the 1996 World Food Summit (WFS) target, which is to halve the number of hungry people by 2015, and the 2001 Millennium Development Goal (MDG) hunger target, which is to halve the proportion of hungry people in the total population by 2015. 

• While at the global level there has been an overall reduction in the number of undernourished between 1990–92 and 2011–13, different rates of progress across regions have led to changes in the distribution of undernourished people in the world. Most of the world’s undernourished people are still to be found in Southern Asia, closely followed by sub-Saharan Africa and Eastern Asia. The regional share has declined most in Eastern Asia and South-Eastern Asia. Meanwhile, the share has increased in Southern Asia, in sub-Saharan Africa and in Western Asia and Northern Africa. 

• Africa remains the region with the highest prevalence of undernourishment with more than one live in people estimated to be undernourished. 

• Both the number and proportion of people undernourished have decreased signifi¬cantly in most countries in Asia, particularly in South-Eastern Asia, but progress in Southern Asia has been slower, especially in terms of the number of people undernourished. 

• The prevalence of undernourishment is lower in Western Asia than in other parts of the region but has risen steadily since 1990–92. With a decline in prevalence from 31.1 to 10.7 percent, the most rapid progress was recorded in South-Eastern Asia, followed by Eastern Asia. 

• The Asia region as a whole is nearly on track to achieve the MDG hunger target. The target has already been reached in the Caucasus and Central Asia, East Asia and South-Eastern Asia, while it has nearly been reached in Latin America and the Caribbean. 

• Food security is a complex condition. Its dimensions – availability, access, utilization and stability are better understood when presented through a suite of indicators. 



The World Bank report entitled Migration and Remittance Flows: Recent Trends and Outlook-2013-16 released on 2 October 2013 revealed that India emerged as the largest recipient of foreign remittances among developing economies in 2013. In 2013 Non-Resident Indians (NRI) sent a record 71 billion Dollars home compared to 70 billion dollars in 2012. 

According to a Word Bank report NRIs are estimated to remit up to 85 billion dollars a year by 2015. World Bank in its report stated India and China will represent nearly a third of total remittances to the developing world in 2013. The surge in remittances continues despite the recent decline in Rupees against the Dollar. The gulf countries account for nearly 40 per cent of remittances in India while it was 48 percent to South Asian countries. 

Highlights of the report: 

1.The developing world is expected to receive 414 billion Dollars in migrant remittances in 2013, an increase of 6.3 percent over the previous year (2012). This is projected to rise to 540 billion Dollars by 2016. 

2.Globally, the world’s 232 million international migrants are expected to remit earnings worth 550 billion Dollars in 2013 and over 700 billion Dollars by 2016. 

3.The top recipients of officially recorded remittances for 2013 are India (with an estimated 71 billion Dollars), China (60 billion Dollars), the Philippines (26 billion Dollars), Mexico (22 billion Dollars), Nigeria (21 billion Dollars), and Egypt (20 billion Dollars). Other large recipients include Pakistan, Bangladesh, Vietnam, and Ukraine. 

4.As a percentage of GDP, the top recipients of remittances, in 2012, were Tajikistan (48 percent), Kyrgyz Republic (31 percent), Lesotho and Nepal (25 percent each), and Moldova (24 percent). 

5.Growth of remittances has been robust in all regions of the world, except for Latin America and the Caribbean, where growth decelerated due to economic weakness in the United States. 

In India, remittances are larger than the earnings from IT exports. With the weakening of the Indian rupee, a surge in remittances is expected as nonresident Indians take advantage of the cheaper goods, services and assets back home. Remittances to India are expected to reach 71 billion Dollars in 2013. 

Remittance is the act of transmitting money to a distant location to fulfill an obligation. International remittances are transfers of funds by foreign workers—remitters—who are living and working in other countries typically to their families who are still living in their home countries. 



India was re-elected in the new Council of International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) as one of the states making the largest contribution to the provision of facilities for international civil air navigation. The 38th session of the Assembly of ICAO completed the election of the Council in Montreal on 1October 2013. The 36- member Council is the governing body of the Organization and is elected for a three-year term. 

The election process was divided into three parts, with the following states elected: 

PART I – (States of chief importance in air transport) - Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Russian Federation, United Kingdom and the United States. All of them have been re-elected. 

PART II – (States which make the largest contribution to the provision of facilities for international civil air navigation) – Argentina, Egypt, India, Mexico, Nigeria, Norway, Portugal, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, South Africa, Spain and Venezuela. Except Norway, Portugal and Venezuela, all others have been re-elected. 

PART III– (States ensuring geographic representation)- Bolivia, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Chile, Dominican Republic, Kenya, Libya, Malaysia, Nicaragua, Poland, Republic of Korea, United Arab Emirates and United Republic of Tanzania. Bolivia, Chile, Dominican Republic, Kenya, Libya, Nicaragua, Poland and United Republic of Tanzania have been elected for the first time. 

A specialized agency of the United Nations, ICAO was created in 1944 to promote the safe and orderly development of international civil aviation throughout the world. It sets standards and regulations necessary for aviation safety, security, efficiency, capacity and environmental protection, amongst many other priorities. The Organization serves as the forum for cooperation in all fields of civil aviation among its 191 Member States. 



The Union Health and Family Welfare Minister, Ghulam Nabi Azad on 4 October 2013 launched the indigenously produced Japanese Encephalitis (JE) vaccine JENVAC in New Delhi. The vaccine has been jointly developed by scientists of National Institute of Virology (NIV) Pune, Indian Council of Medical Research and Bharat Biotech Limited- Hyderabad. 

JENVAC is India’s first indigenously developed vaccine for treating Japanese Encephalitis, a mosquito-borne viral disease that affects the brain. The newly developed JENVAC is the highly purified inactivated vaccine can be administered during epidemics without the fear of adverse effects. It is available in both single dose and five dose presentations. The vaccine has been developed under the Public Private Partnership mode. Japanese Encephalitis, which is prevalent in 171 districts of 19 States, affects mostly children below 15 years. 

About 25 per cent of the affected children die and among survivors, 30 to 40 per cent suffer from physical and mental impairment. The indigenous production will now improve the efficacy, availability and affordability of the vaccine which is presently being imported from China. 



The Europalia-India cultural festival was on 4 October 2013 jointly inaugurated by the President Pranab Mukherjee and the King of the Belgium in Brussels. The largest Indian cultural festival abroad in recent years will feature different aspects of Indian culture ranging from history to arts, literature, architecture and Indian philosophy. The cultural ball called Europalia-India will last till it coinsides with the Republic Day of India in January 2014. 

During its next four months journey across the European field to over 200 venues, these mega India cultural festivals will unfold the essense of India's for the European continent. A Brilliant endeavour to intimately engage Europe-India in a never before cultural encounter is bound to make interactions spill over to socio-political and economic sphere of both these important regions as well. 



World Habitat day is observed across the world on 7 October 2013. The purpose of this day is creation of the global awareness regarding the State of the towns and cities and the basic human right to adequate shelter. First Monday of October every year is designated as the World Habitat Day by the United Nation. 

Theme of World Habitat Day 2013: The theme of the World Habitat Day 2013 is Urban Mobility to encourage people to shift towards more sustainable modes of transportation. In the year 2012, the theme was Changing Cities, Building Opportunities. 

About the World Habitat Day: 
• The World Habitat Day is observed every year on the first Monday of October, as designated by the United Nation. 
• The first World Habitat Day was celebrated in the year 1986. 
• The primary objective of observing and celebrating this day is to reflect the state of cities as well as towns along with the basic human right to adequate shelter. 
• The World Habitat Day celebrations also aim to remind the global community about its collective responsibility for protection of the habitat for future generation. 
• On this day, the United Nations Human Settlements Programme gives the Habitat Scroll of Honour awards. 

These awards have been into existence since the year 1989. The objective of the award is to acknowledge the initiatives of those who make contributions towards the fields associated with the human habitats. 



India and Japan signed Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on 7 October 2013 to undertake a joint feasibility study of High Speed Railway system on the Mumbai-Ahmedabad route. The MOU was signed by Katsuo MATSUMOTO, Director South Asia Division Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) from the Japanese side and Girish Pillai, Adviser Infrastructure, Ministry of Railways from the Indian side. 

Highlights of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU): 
• The MoU provided that the India and Japan will co-finance a joint feasibility study of Mumbai- Ahmedabad High Speed route. 

• The mainobjective of the Joint study is to prepare a feasibility report of High Speed Railway system on the Mumbai-Ahmedabad route with speed of 300-350kmph. 

• The study will do traffic forecasting, alignment surveys and undertake comparative Study of High Speed Railway Technology and System. 

• A Joint Monitoring Committee shall be established comprising of the Ministry of Railways, Planning Commission, the Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of External Affairs for the Indian side and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA), the Ministry of Economy Trade and Industries (METI), the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MLIT), the Ministry of Finance (MOF), Embassy of Japan (EoJ) in India)and JICA for the Japanese side. 

• The cost of the study will be shared 50:50 between India and Japan. 



All-India Association of Industries (AIAI) on 8 October 2013 announced that it entered into an agreement with the Federation of Pakistan Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) in order to promote the trade between India and Pakistan. For this purpose, a memorandum of understanding was signed with a purpose of enhancing the trade and investments between the two nations. 

The MoU also seeks to enhance the collaborations, joint ventures as well as technology transfers via an exchange of the business proposals. Apart from this, the MoU also aims to offer the mutual help in organisation of and participation in trade fairs and exhibitions. 

The MoU was signed between President of FCPPI Zubair Ahmed Malik and with senior AIAI officials. With this, the AIAI’s list of the agreements like this with the fellow lobbies increased to 205. 



The World Mental Health Day Observed on 10 October 2013 across the world to raise awareness about mental illness and its effects on people. 

The theme for the year 2013 is Mental health and older adults World Mental Health Day is a day for global mental health education, awareness and advocacy. It was first celebrated in 1992 at the initiative of the World Federation for Mental Health, a global mental health organization with members and contacts in more than 150 countries. This day, every year thousands of supporters come to celebrate this annual awareness program to bring attention to Mental Illness and its major effects on peoples' life worldwide. 

World Health Organization also develops technical and communication material and provides technical assistance to the countries for advocacy campaigns around the World Mental Health Day. Medical Data states that one in four people globally experience a mental health condition in their lifetime. 

In India prevalence of mental disorders is six to seven percent for common mental disorders and about two percent for severe mental disorders. The Government of India has also introduced The Mental Health Care Bill 2013 in Parliament on 19 August 2013. The bill seeks to safeguard the right to access mental healthcare, right to protection from cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment and right to equality. 



China passed USA to become world’s biggest oil importer in September 2013 as per the data released by US government in the first week of October 2013. It happened because of faster economic growth and strong auto sales. The United States consumes far more oil per person than China does. It has a population about one-third the size of China’s. China’s economy is the world’s second largest. 

China has encouraged development of wind and solar power and use of autos powered by batteries or natural gas. However, gasoline still remains the country's main vehicle fuel in coming decades. Until the late 1990s, China fulfilled its oil needs but the economic boom outstripped its production capacity. 

This compelled China to depend more heavily on imports, especially from Saudi Arabia and Iran. 



Government of India on 10 October 2013 signed agreements with seven countries, who pledged their commitment to the Nalanda University project in Bihar. The Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) were signed with Australia, Cambodia, Singapore, Brunei, New Zealand, Lao PDR and Myanmar in the sidelines of East Asia Summit in Brunei. These MoUs are important to India's plans to establish Nalanda University in Bihar as an institution of international repute. 

About Nalanda University Project: 

• Nalanda University will be constructed at Rajgir, which is situated around 100 km away from Patna, Bihar. The construction of the University will take place on 446-acre plot, which is situated 12 km away from the ruins of ancient seat of learning. 

• The idea to revive Nalanda University was first mooted in 2005 by then President APJ Abdul Kalam. 

• The University is being built near the ruins of the 5th century historic academic place by the same name in Bihar and those involved with this project include Nobel laureate Amartya Sen. 

• There will be five representatives from the EAS on the Nalanda University governing board. 

• China has already committed 1 million Dollars for the project, Singapore has pledged 5-6 million Dollars and Australia about 1 million Australian dollars and all these funds have been committed on voluntary basis. 

The East Asia Summit (EAS) is a forum for cooperation between various countries of this region with ASEAN and includes Australia, China, India, Japan, Republic of Korea, New Zealand, Russia and the US, in addition to the ten ASEAN (Association of South East Asian Nations) countries. The 10 ASEAN nations are Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Laos, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam. 



International Day of the Girl Child observed on 11 October 2013 across the world to recognise the girls’ rights and the unique challenges girls face around the world. 

Theme for the year 2013 is Innovating for Girls’ Education This year’s Day focuses on innovating for girls’ education. Smart and creative use of technology, policies, partnerships and, most of all, the engagement of young people, themselves, are important for overcoming barriers to girls’ learning and achievement. 

The International Day of the Girl Child promotes girls' human rights, highlights gender inequalities that remain between girls and boys and addresses the various forms of discrimination and abuse suffered by girls around the world. 

The United Nations General Assembly on 19 December 19, 2011 adopted Resolution 66/170 to declare 11 October as the International Day of the Girl Child, to recognise girls’ rights and the unique challenges girls face around the world. 

UN data about Girls: 
• One in three women and girls experience abuse in their lifetime. 
• More than half of sexual assaults are committed against girls under 16 years of age. 
• Globally, more than one in three young women aged 20-24 years are married before the age of 18. 



World Arthritis Day is observed across the world on 12 October 2013 to raise awareness about Rheumatic and Musculoskeletal Diseases (RMDs). The Day is celebrated each year on 12 October to raise awareness of Rheumatic and Musculoskeletal Diseases amongst the medical community, people with RMDs and the general public. 

World Arthritis Day was established in 1996 by Arthritis and Rheumatism International (ARI) and is celebrated each year on 12 October. 

The aims of World Arthritis Day are: 
• To raise awareness of RMDs amongst the medical community, people with RMDs and the general public. 
• To influence public policy by making decision-makers aware of the burden of RMDs and the steps which can be taken to ease it. 
• To ensure all people with RMDs and their caregivers are aware of the vast support network available to them. 

About Arthritis: 
• Arthritis means joint inflammation, and it's used to describe different diseases and conditions that affect joints, the tissues that surround joints, and other connective tissues in the body. 
• Two of the most common forms of arthritis are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. 



China on 10 October 2013 signed a 350 Billion Yuan (45 billion Euro) currency swap agreement with the European Union, marking a major step in internationalising its currency. The agreement signed between the People's Bank of China (PBOC) and the European Central Bank (ECB). The pact aimed to support bilateral trade and protect financial stability. 

The agreement lasts three years and can be extended if both parties agree. The new arrangement will provide more liquidity to the Renminbi market in the Euro area, promote overseas use of the Yuan, and help facilitate trade and investment. So far China has signed currency swap deals totaling 2.2 trillion Yuan (358 billion US Dollars) with 22 countries and regions to push the international use of its Yuan. 



The 15-member UN Security Council on 12 October 2013 formally approved a first joint mission to destroy Syria's weapons. The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons and the UN have a team of 60 experts and support staff in Syria destroying Syria's production facilities while the country's civil war rages on. 

The mission will have bases in Damascus and Cyprus, where most inspectors will stay unless they are on site visits. A chemical weapons attack in Damascus on 21 August 2013, which left hundreds dead, triggered an international crisis that led to threats of a US military strike against Syrian government targets. 

The UN Security Council passed a resolution on 27 September 2013 backing a Russia-US plan to destroy President Bashar al-Assad's chemical weapons which ended the threat of military strike against Syria. 


National

Office of the Registrar General and Census Commissioner of India on 30 September 2013 released report on families living in slum areas. The slum report highlighted Households Population, sex ratio and growth rate, Child population and child sex ratio and Scheduled Caste population etc. 
Highlights of slum census report:
1. The people who are living in slums increased from 52 million in 2001 to 65 million 2011. 
2. Slum population grown slower than the average urban population over 2001-2011. 
3. Women living in slums participate at a higher rate in the workforce than the urban average. 
4. More Scheduled Castes (SCs) are living in slums with 1 out of every five slums residents belonging to SC, compared to just over one out of 10 for urban India as a whole. The proportion of SCs living in slums has risen over the last decade. 
5. Scheduled Castes in slums have shown far better sex ratios than other urban communities. 
6. According to census 2001 total number of towns having slums 1743.The number of towns increased to 2613 in 2011. 
7. The child sex ratio (0-6 years) of an average slum household is 922 girls for every 1000 boys, compared to 905 for urban India. 
8. Top five states in slum population are Maharashtra(12 million),Andhra Pradesh(10 million), West Bengal(6.4 million), Utter Pradesh(6.2 million ) and Tamil Nadu(5.8 million) 
9. Three types of slums have been defined in Census — notified, recognised and identified. 
10. In 2011 census slums have been earmarked in all the statutory towns irrespective of their population size based on the same definition as in 2001. 
11. States/Union territories not reporting Slums Census 2001 are Himachal Pradesh, Sikkim, Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Mizoram, Manipur, Daman and Diu, Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Lakshadweep. But in 2011 only Manipur, Daman and Diu, Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Lakshadweep not reported any slums. 
Probable reasons for upcoming slums: 
• Urbanization 
• Industrialization 
• Higher productivity in the secondary and tertiary sector against primary sector.It makes cities and towns centres of economic growth and jobs. 
•Cities act as beacons for the rural population as they represent a higher standard of living and offer opportunities to people not available in rural areas. 
This results in large scale migration from rural to urban areas. Census report also highlighted the negative consequences of urban pull. It results in upcoming of slums characterised by housing shortage and critical inadequacies in public utilities, overcrowding, unhygienic conditions etc. 
Definition of slums: 
According to the Slum Area Improvement and Clearance Act, 1956 slums have been defined as mainly those residential areas where dwellings are in any respect unfit for human habitation by reasons of dilapidation, overcrowding, faulty arrangements and designs of such buildings, narrowness or faulty arrangement of streets, lack of ventilation, light, sanitation facilities or any combination of these factors which are detrimental to safety, health and morals. 
According to UN Habitat a slum is characterized by lack of durable housing, insufficient living area, and lack of access to clean water, inadequate sanitation and insecure tenure. 



Aga Khan, a Swiss-Born Philanthropist and Muslim Spiritual Leader visited India from 17 to 29 September 2013. During the visit in New Delhi, Aga Khan met President of India Pranab Mukharji, Vice-President of India Hamid Ansari and Prime Minister of India Manmohan Singh. 

Highlights of the Visit: 
• During the official visit, Aga Khan the unveiled restored Humayun’s Tomb in New Delhi on 18 September 2013. The task of restoration was done by the Aga Khan Trust for Culture, in partnership with the Archaeological Survey of India, and with the support of the Sir Dorabji Tata Trust. The restoration work took place on the public private partnership (PPP) model and it is first of its kind on the India’s heritage site. The project was funded primarily by the Aga Khan Trust. 
• During the visit, Aga Khan Academy Hyderabad, which is the new non-profit school on 100 acre campus, was inaugurated on 20 September 2013 by the Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh N Kiran Kumar Reddy in the presence of Aga Khan, the founder and chairman of Aga Khan Development Network. 
• He was also visited the cities of Hyderabad and Mumbai, where Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN) is involved in various flagship development projects. 



Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports, Government of India on 1October 2013 revised the existing Scheme relating to Talent Search & Training and renamed it as Scheme of Human Resources Development in Sports. The Government intends to give focus on developing human resources in sports sciences and sports medicine for the overall development of sports and games in the country. This will help the country be self reliant in these fields over a period of time in general and meet the requirements of the proposed National Institute of Sports Sciences and Medicines in particular. 

The Scheme will cover the following areas: 

(i) Award of Fellowships for specialized studies at Masters’ and Doctoral levels in the subjects namely, (a) Biomechanics (b) Kinesiology (c) Anthropometry (d) Exercise Physiology (e) Sports Psychology (f) General theory & method of training (GTMT) (g) Sports Medicine (h) Sports Nutrition & (i) Anti Doping 

(ii) Award of Fellowships/Scholarships to sports specialists, coaches, support personnel and match officials for specialized studies in the respective areas 

(iii) Financial grant for Research Projects relevant to sports and games 

(iv) Financial grant for Publication works/journals of high standard directly linked to sports and games 

(v) Financial assistance for attending international Seminars, Conferences and Workshops on sports related matters 

(vi) Holding Seminars, Conferences, Workshops and Camps on sports related matters in the country. 

The revised scheme will be implemented on pilot mode during the 12th Plan period. The estimated expenditure for the revised scheme during the current plan period will be around 45.00 crore rupees, which will be met from the total plan outlay of the Department. Top level Universities/Institutes, with world class facilities, have been identified for most of the subjects for the Fellowship Programme. The target is to give 10 such fellowships every year. 



The National Voluntary Blood Donation Day on 1 October celebrated every year in India since on 1 October 1975. It is organised by National Blood Transfusion Council (NBTC) and National AIDS Control Organisation, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare of Government of India. 

The main objectives of National Voluntary Blood Donation Day: 
• To increase awareness among the people and the importance of voluntary blood donation. 
• To achieve 100 percent Voluntary Blood Donation, so as to be able to give the safest blood to the needy patients. 
• To have enough blood stock in our blood banks for any eventuality. 
• To give our thanks and reinforce the self esteem of those who donate blood voluntarily, so that they continue to do so regularly. 
• To inspire those who has not donated blood but are in good health, to start donating blood. 
• To inspire those donors who donate blood only for their relatives or friends, to donate voluntarily. 

Legal Protection in India for blood donation
Safe blood transfusion comes under the legal protection as it is life saving and also fatal. Fundamental right under part III of Indian Constitution (Article 21) spells out that no person shall be deprived of his life. 

The Consumer Protection Act of 1986 also covers blood as a commodity. Indian Panel code chapter XIV, sections 269 and 270 also provide for protection against spread of infectious diseases due to negligent and malignant acts. Drugs and Cosmetics Act of 1940 also establishes regulations for blood banking and transfusions. 

Criteria for blood donors as per the Drugs and Cosmetics Act 1940: 
• Age is between 18 to 65 years. 
• Body weight is 45 kg and above. 
• Pulse rate 60 to 100 per minute and regular 
• Blood Pressure of Systolic 100 to180mm of mercury; Diastolic 50 to100mm of mercury. 
• Hemoglobin minimum 12.5gm/100ml of blood. 
•Oral temperature should not exceed 37.50C. 

About National blood transfusion council: 
In accordance with the directive of the Supreme Court, National Blood Transfusion Council was constituted in 1996 as a Registered Society. 

Main objectives of National blood transfusion council:
• Promote voluntary blood donation 
• Ensure safe blood transfusion 
• Provide infrastructure to blood centres.



The Maharashtra Cabinet on 1 October 2013 approved a policy for senior citizens. The policy aimed at ensuring access to healthcare, housing, financial security and enabling them to lead a dignified life. According to the policy, people attaining 65 years will be considered as senior citizens. 



The ninth Formation Day of National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) took place in New Delhi at Vigyan Bhawan, New Delhi on 4 October 2013. At the occasion, Army Chief General Bikram Singh and Navy Chief Admiral DK Joshi were also present. The primary focus at the ninth Formation Day of National Disaster Management Authority was at the recent massive tragedy of Uttarakhand. The Prime Minister of India, Manmohan Singh, at the occasion explained that rains and floods in Uttarakhand opened the facts about India’s vulnerability to disasters and the need to take effective measures to prevent such disasters and contain their fall-out when they occur. 

During the occasion, the Prime Minister of India also honoured the people from the Indian Air Force, Indo-Tibetan Border Police, National Disaster Response Force, Civil Administration, civilian air crew and the community at large who helped during the natural calamity at Uttarakhand. 

About the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA): 
• The National Disaster Management Authority has been in existence for 8 years now. 
• Apart from the National Disaster Management Authority at the national level, State Disaster Management Authorities and District Disaster Management Authorities have also been set up in a large number of States and Union Territories. 
• NDMA is the India’s apex body in the area of disaster management. 
• It not only lays down our policies on disaster management but also lays down guidelines for the State Authorities to follow while making their own State Plans. • It recommends funding for disaster management efforts and takes the other measures required for prevention and mitigation of disasters and capacity building for disaster management. 



The Union Ministry of culture launched on 3 October 2013 a unique project to put 100 most important Indian heritage sites online. The sites include the Taj Mahal, Khajuraho, Ajanta and Ellora caves. Under the project Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) signed an agreement with Google to create 360 degree online imagery of 100 of India’s most important heritage sites. 

According to the agreement detailed imagery of the identified heritage sites will be placed over the Internet for public viewing. The imagery of the heritage sites will be available on Google Maps and the World Wonders site within the Google Cultural Institute. This will facilitate people to virtually view and explore these areas. 

The project will make the experience of visiting heritage sites online more enjoyable and also bring them to the notice of billions of people connected globally via the Internet. 

About Archaeological Survey of India: 
• Archaeological Survey of India is the premier organization for the archaeological researches and protection of the cultural heritage of the India. 
• Maintenance of ancient monuments and archaeological sites and remains of national importance is the prime concern of the ASI. 
• It regulates all archaeological activities in the country as per the provisions of the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Sites and Remains Act, 1958. 
• It also regulates Antiquities and Art Treasure Act, 1972. 
• For the maintenance of ancient monuments and archaeological sites and remains of national importance the entire country is divided into 27 Circles. 
• There are 3678 Monuments are declared as protected by the ASI, out of which 20 are World Heritage sites. 
• Recently 6 forts of Rajasthan have been declared as World Heritage site by UNESCO under serial nomination as Hill forts of Rajasthan. 



The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs on 3 October 2013 approved the gross budgetary support of 8632.77 crore Rupees for implementation of the National AIDS Control Programme (NACP) Phase-IV by the Department of AIDS Control, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare. NACP IV will integrate with other national programmes and align with overall 12th Five Year Plan goals of inclusive growth and development. 

Objectives of the National AIDS Control Programme (NACP) Phase-IV: 
• Reduce new infections by 50 percent (2007 Baseline of NACP III) 
• Provide comprehensive care and support to all persons living with HIV/AIDS and treatment services for all those who require it. 

Strategies adopted for achieving the objectives: 
• Intensifying and consolidating prevention services with a focus on (a) high-risk groups and vulnerable population and (b) general population 
• Expanding Information, Education and Communication (IEC) services for (a) general population and (b) High-Risk Groups (HRGS) with a focus on behaviour change and demand generation 
• Increasing access and promoting comprehensive Care, Support and Treatment (CST) 
• Building capacities at National, State, District and facility levels 
• Strengthening Strategic Information Management Systems 

Background of the National AIDS Control Programme: 

The Union Government of India launched the first National AIDS Control Programme (NACP I) in the year 1992. The second phase of NACP was then initiated in the year 1998. 

Thereafter, from 2007-2012, the third phase of NACP began with the primary objective to halt and reverse the HIV epidemic In India. The fourth phase now aims to consolidate the gains of NACP III. The Department of AIDS Control has been working closely with the Department of Health and Family Welfare towards integration of HIV/AIDS services into the larger health system, with the objective of optimal utilisation of existing NRHM/RCH resources for strengthening NACP services, and vice versa. 



The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs approved the Rashtriya Uchchatar Shiksha Abhiyan (RUSA), a Centrally Sponsored Scheme (CSS) for reforming the state higher education system, on 3 October 2013. 

Steps to be taken up as per the Plan: 
• As per this, during the 12th Plan period, 80 new universities would be created by converting autonomous colleges or colleges in a cluster to State universities. • 100 new colleges, including professional and technical colleges would be set up and 54 existing colleges would be converted into model degree colleges. 
• Infrastructure grants would be given to 150 universities and 3500 colleges to upgrade and fill critical gaps in infrastructure especially libraries and laboratories. 
• Rashtriya Uchchatar Shiksha Abhiyan would also support 5000 faculty positions. 

Primary features of the Rashtriya Uchchatar Shiksha Abhiyan (RUSA): 
• In the 12th Plan period, RUSA would have a financial outlay of 22855 crore Rupees, out of which 16227 crore Rupees will be borne by the Centre. 
• Apart from this, allocation of 1800 crore Rupees in the 12th Plan for the existing scheme Sub-Mission polytechnics would also be subsumed in RUSA. 
• Therefore, the total central share, including the existing scheme of polytechnics will be 18027 crore Rupees during the 12th plan. 
• Centre-State funding would be in the ratio of 90:10 for North-Eastern States, Sikkim, Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand and 65:35 for other States and Union Territories. 
• RUSA will be a new Centrally Sponsored Scheme spread over two plan periods, for improving access, equity and quality in the state higher education system. 
• RUSA also aims to incentivise States to step up plan investments in higher education. 

Primary Objectives of Rashtriya Uchchatar Shiksha Abhiyan (RUSA): 
• Improving the overall quality of existing state higher educational institutions by ensuring conformity to prescribed norms and standards and adoption of accreditation as a mandatory quality assurance framework 
• Correct regional imbalances in access to higher education through high quality institutions in rural and semi urban areas as well as creating opportunities for students from rural areas to get access to better quality institutions 
• Setting up of higher education institutions in unserved and underserved areas • Improve equity in higher education by providing adequate opportunities to socially deprived communities; promote inclusion of women, minorities, SC/ST and OBCs as well as differently-abled persons 
• Ensure adequate availability of quality faculty in all higher educational institutions and ensure capacity building at all levels 
• Create an enabling atmosphere in higher educational institutions to devote themselves to research and innovation 
• Integrate skill developments efforts of the government with the conventional higher education system through optimum interventions 
• All funding under RUSA would be norm based and future grants would be performance based and outcome dependent. Commitment by States and institutions to certain academic, administrative and governance reforms will be a precondition for receiving funding. 

Background: The National Development Council (NDC) approved RUSA as part of the 12th Plan. It was subsequently included in the list of 66 schemes approved by the Cabinet on 20 June 2013, as part of the restructured CSSs for implementation in the 12th Plan. 



The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) on 3 October 2013 approved continuation of the scheme for Integrated Textile Parks in the 12th five year plan. 

Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs Decisions: 
• CCEA also approved sanction of new projects for utilizing 717 crore Rupees the balance left in the 12th five year plan allocation, after meeting committed liabilities of the sanctioned 61 parks. 
• It also gave its nod for an additional grant of 10 crore Rupees to be given to existing parks for setting up apprael manufacturing units. 50 crore Rupees have been allocated for the purpose. 

About Integrated Textiles Parks: 
• The primary objective of the scheme for Integrated Textile Parks is to provide the industry with world class infrastructure facilities for setting up their textile units. 
• The product mix in these parks would include apparels and garments parks, hosiery parks, silk parks, processing parks, technical textiles including medical textiles, carpet parks, powerloom parks. 
• The Scheme for Integrated Textiles Parks seeks green field investments in textiles sector on a public private partnership basis with the objective of setting up world class infrastructure for Textiles industry. 

The Scheme for Integrated Textile Parks (SITP) was approved in the 10th Five Year Plan (July 2005) to provide the industry with world-class infrastructure facilities for setting up their textile units by merging the erstwhile Apparel Parks for Exports Scheme (APES) and Textile Centre Infrastructure Development Scheme (TCIDS). 

The scheme targets industrial clusters or locations with high growth potential, which require strategic interventions by way of providing world-class infrastructure support. 



Indian Railways on 4 October 2013 adopted first ever unique modern technology for maintenance of its passenger coaches, wagons and locomotives in its continuous endeavour to enhance safety in Railway operations. The new maintenance technique which uses acoustic method of diagnostics is known as Acoustic Bearing Detectors (ABD) & Wheel Impact Load Detectors (WILD). When used in combination together they are known as Online Monitoring of Rolling Stock (OMRS) systems. This technique involves placing arrays of microphones and sensors that record the audible noise and forces generated by the running coaches, wagons and locomotives. 

Conventional method to maintain passenger coaches, wagons and locomotives is to physically examine when these are in stationary condition at the maintenance depots. Under the new technique, the faults in the Rolling stock can be detected while on run which is a big advantage as it will make maintenance faster reducing turn -around time for Rolling stocks thereby ensuring availability of high number of wagons/coaches etc. for operation. The OMRS equipment is so sensitive and accurate that it is often able to indicate the specific sub-component that is not behaving the way it should and therefore causing abnormal noise.

WILD have been installed in 15 locations across the country in the initial phase and these have also detected faulty vehicles that have caused higher than normal impact force on the rails. These 15 locations are; Ajni, Asansol, Mughal Sarai-I, Mughal Sarai – II, Barwadih, Vishakhapatnam, Arakkonam, Gunakal, Mahalimarup, Dongargarh, Bilai, Hospet, Bina, Itarsi and New Katni. 



The Union Cabinet of India on 3 October 2013 approved the proposal to establish a Central Armed Police Forces Institute of Medical Sciences (CAPFILMS), along with a 500-bed General Hospital, a 300-bed Super Specialty Hospital, a Nursing College and a School of Paramedics. 

The Institute shall be registered as a Society under the Societies Registration Act, 1860 and shall have a Governing Body and a Governing Council, under the Ministry of Home Affairs. 



The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs on 3 October 2013 approved the Rashtriya Uchchatar Shiksha Abhiyan (RUSA), a Centrally Sponsored Scheme (CSS) for reforming the state higher education system.

During the 12th Plan period, 80 new universities would be created by converting autonomous colleges/colleges in a cluster to State universities. 100 new colleges, including professional/technical colleges would be set up and 54 existing colleges would be converted into model degree colleges. Infrastructure grants would be given to 150 universities and 3500 colleges to upgrade and fill critical gaps in infrastructure especially libraries, laboratories etc. 

RUSA would also support 5000 faculty positions. In the 12th Plan period, RUSA would have a financial outlay of 22855 crore rupees, of which 16227 crore rupees will be the Central share. In addition, allocation of 1800 crore rupees in the 12th Plan for the existing scheme Sub- Mission polytechnics would also be subsumed in RUSA. 

Thus the total central share, including the existing scheme of polytechnics will be 18027 crore rupees during the 12th Plan. Centre-State funding would be in the ratio of 90:10 for North-Eastern States, Sikkim, Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand and 65:35 for other States and Union Territories. RUSA will be a new Centrally Sponsored Scheme spread over two plan periods, for improving access, equity and quality in the state higher education system. With over 96 percent of students enrolled in the state higher education system, there is a need for State colleges and universities to be strengthened through strategic Central funding and implementing certain much needed reforms. 

RUSA also aims to incentivize States to step up plan investments in higher education. The National Development Council (NDC) approved RUSA as part of the 12th Plan. It was subsequently included in the list of 66 schemes approved by the Cabinet on 20 June 2013, as part of the restructured CSSs for implementation in the 12th Plan. 



The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs on 3 October 2013 approved the implementation of the National Mission on Oilseeds and Oil Palm (NMOOP) during the 12th Plan Period with financial allocation of 3507 crore rupees. This would help in enhancing production of oilseeds by 6.58 million tonnes. This would also bring additional area of 1.25 lakh hectares under Oil Palm cultivation with increase in productivity of fresh fruit bunches from 4927 kg/ha to 15000 kg/ha and increase in collection of tree borne oilseeds to 14 lakh tonne. 

Implementation of the proposed Mission would enhance production of vegetable oil sources by 2.48 million tonnes from oilseeds (1.70 million tonnes), oil palm (0.60 million tonnes) and tree borne oilseeds (0.18 million tonnes) by the end of the 12th Plan Period. 

The implementation strategy in the Mission would place emphasis on : 
  • increasing the Seed Replacement Ratio (SRR) with focus on varietal replacement;
  • increasing irrigation coverage under oilseeds from 26 percent to 38 percent; 
  • diversification of area from low yielding cereals crops to oilseeds crops; 
  • inter-cropping of oilseeds and use of fallow land; area expansion under oil palm and TBOs; 
  • increasing availability of quality planting materials of oil palm and TBOs; 
  • enhancing procurement of oilseeds and collection and processing of TBOs.
Recommended varieties and proven technologies would be demonstrated in a cluster approach through mini kits and frontline/cluster demonstration. The cluster approach would ensure participation of all categories of farmers, irrespective of the size of their holdings, social status and would demonstrate visible impact of technologies in enhancing productivity and production.
NMOOP is built upon the achievements of the existing schemes of Integrated Scheme of Oilseeds. Oil Palm and Maize (ISOPOM), Tree Borne Oilseeds Scheme and Oil Palm Area Expansion (OPAE) programme during the 11th Plan period. 

Implementation of these schemes have shown increase in production and productivity of oilseeds, area expansion with increased production of FFBs under oil palm and augmented availability of quality planting materials, pre-processing technologies and awareness about TBOs. 



The Union government of India on 5 October 2013 launched the Inter Company LPG portability scheme in 24 cities across the country. It started with Bangaluru, Karnataka. The cities are Hyderabad, Patna, Dehradun, Faridabad, Kolkata, and Chandigarh among others. The scheme will not be launched in the five poll-bound states including Delhi, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh due to model code of conduct. 

Under the portability scheme, a consumer can now opt for the distributor of his choice within a cluster of LPG distributors in the vicinity and across the oil companies. Presently, an LPG consumer is attached to a distributor and cannot change its distributor even he is unhappy with the service. 

The consumers will be able to see the service ratings of all the distributors in their clusters and choose the one they want to based on service levels. This will usher in improvement in consumer service by the distributors as it will bring in competition in the cluster of distributors. 



The Union Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh on 6 October 2013 announced that the food subsidy and foodgrain allocation would be doubled for the state of Bihar under the National Food Security Act. Jairam Ramesh announced that Bihar's food subsidy will increase from 5500 crore Rupees to 11500 crore Rupees, under the National Food Security Act. This means that the allocation of foodgrain will increase from 28 lakh tonnes to 56 lakh tonnes. 

Under the National Food Security Act, Bihar will benefit the most. This was done in order to improve the public distribution system (PDS) in the state, which was in a bad shape. Jairam Ramesh explained that the population of Bihar was more than Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh, but the PDS shops were comparatively less than these two states. This indicated the level of poverty in Bihar. 

For this reason, changes in the PDS network in Bihar were brought out to implement the National Food Security Act in a right way. Apart from Bihar, Gujarat, Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh would be other three major beneficiaries under the new Act. Uttar Pradesh will get 96 lakh tones of foodgrains per annum under the National Food Security Act in comparison to the current allotment of 65 lakh tonnes. Gujarat, in the meanwhile, will get 24 lakh tonnes from the current allocation of 13.5 lakh tonnes per annum at present. 



The Union Cabinet 3 October 2013 approved the National Policy on Universal Electronic Accessibility that recognizes the need to eliminate discrimination on the basis of disabilities as well as to facilitate equal access to electronics and Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs). 

About National Policy on Universal Electronic Accessibility: 

The policy will facilitate equal and unhindered access to electronics and ICTs products and services by differently abled persons (both physically and mentally challenged) and to facilitate local language support for the same. 

The aim of the policy shall be achieved through universal access to electronics and ICT products and services to synchronize with barrier free environment and preferably usable without adaptation. Differently abled persons all over the country will benefit from this policy. 

Strategies for the implementation of the policy: 

1.Creating awareness on universal electronics accessibility and universal design. 

2.Capacity building and infrastructure development. 

3.Setting up of model electronics and ICTs centres for providing training and demonstration to special educators and physically as well as mentally challenged persons. 

4.Conducting research and development, use of innovation, ideas, technology etc. 

5.Developing programme and schemes with greater emphasis for differently abled women and children. 

6.Developing procurement guidelines for electronics and ICTs for accessibility and assistive needs. 

The National Policy on Universal Electronic Accessibility has been created on the backdrop of India ratifying the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) in 2007. 

The UN Convention states that State parties shall take appropriate measures to ensure to persons with disabilities, access on an equal basis with others, to the physical environment, to transportation, to information and communications, including ICTs and systems and to other facilities and services open or provided to the public. 



The Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas, Government of India launched two schemes on 5 October 2013 to empower the consumers. 

Under these two new schemes consumers can purchase 5 kg LPG cylinders at market price with minimal documentation through Company Owned Retail Outlets (Petrol Stations) and a consumer can opt for the distributor of his choice within a cluster of LPG distributors (portability).



The Indian Air Force Day is celebrated on 8 October 2013. It is the 81st anniversary of the Indian Air Force. On this day, various celebrations are organised across the country along with parades at the airbases all over India. 

About the Indian Air Force:
• The Indian Air Force is the air arm of Indian armed forces. 
• The primary responsibility of Indian Air Force is to keep the Indian airspace protected as well as conduct aerial warfare during the wars. 
• The Indian Air Force was officially established on 8 October 1932 as an auxiliary air force of the British Empire. Therefore, every year 8 October is celebrated as the Indian Air Force Day. 
• After the independence of India in the year 1947, the Royal Indian Air Force served India and the word Royal was thereafter dropped after India became Republic in the year 1950. 
• After the year 1947, the Indian Air Force has been involved in four major wars, two of which included the wars with Pakistan and China. 
• The major operations of IAF include Operation Poomalai, Operation Cactus, Operation Meghdoot and Operation Vijay. 
• It is important to note that at present, the President of India Pranab Mukherjee serves as the ex-officio Commander-in-Chief of the Indian Air Force. • The Air Force is commanded by the Air Chief Marshal (ACM), who is the four-star commander and the Chief of Air Staff. 



The Government of India on 9 October 2013 proposed to support setting up of Plastic Parks for the promotion of downstream plastic processing industries. The Scheme to be implemented by the Department of Chemicals and Petrochemicals envisages setting up of a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV), which would provide infrastructure and common facilities for the industries. State Government or its agency, which would set up such SPV, will have to mandatorily have equity participation in it. 

Share subscription agreements between the SPV and its members will have to be executed. The contribution of the members will have to be at least 20 percent of the total equity, including the cost of the land. The Government of India would provide a Grant-in-Aid to the extent of 50 percent of the project cost, not exceeding 40 crore rupees per SPV to be set up for the purpose. 

The remaining contribution in the SPV will be from the State Government, its agencies, beneficiary industries or loan from financial institutions. The release of funds will be based on identification of milestones and time limits set for each such milestone to be decided at the time of the project approval by a Scheme Steering Committee (SSC) in the Department of Chemicals and Petrochemicals. The proposals are to be made by the State Governments. 

The Scheme is aimed at increasing investment in the sector for additions in capacity and for increased exports in the sector. Adopting a clustered development approach, the scheme aims to achieve environmentally sustainable growth through innovative methods of waste management, recycling etc. Currently the share of India in world trade for plastics is very low. The industry in the country is very large but highly fragmented with the dominance of tiny, small and medium units. 



The Ministry of Science and Technology, Government of India launched on 10 October 2013 a new project of Electronic Management of INSPIRE Award Scheme (E-MIAS) for the future Innovation in Science Pursuit for inspired Research (INSPIRE)Awards. It was launched during the 3rd National level Exhibition and Project Competitions (NLEPC) being held under the INSPIRE Awards Scheme of the Ministry of Science and Technology. 

The application software is ready for use by all the States / UTs, Districts and Schools and the 3 Central organizations Kendriya Vidyalaya, Navodaya Vidyalaya Schools and Sainik Society School. All the concerned authorities are requested to start using the new application software and send future proposals for awards and funds for conducting competitions at various levels online. 

E-Management of INSPIRE Award Scheme: 

• Department of Science and Technology (DST) plans to e-manage the entire INSPIRE Award Scheme by using State-of-Art latest Information Technology which would enable e-filing of nominations by the schools across the country. 

• Under the INSPIRE Award Scheme, large number of nominations, running into lakhs, have to be processed for selection of the students for INSPIRE Award. 

• Its processing by the District and State authorities as well as DST in accordance with the norms of the scheme, transmission of data of selected students to the banks, credit of Award amount to the bank accounts of selected Awardees (wherever notified) or preparation of INSPIRE Award Warrants by the bank and their dispatch to the selected Awardees and all such related activities concerning implementation of the scheme, management of the data, generation of various MIS returns etc. 

Salient Features of E-Management of INSPIRE Award Scheme (E-MIAS): 
• It will enable about 5 lakh middle and high schools all over the country to log in online and file nominations under the Scheme, which would be received electronically by the District Education authorities for further processing. The schools will also be able to view, download and print list of sanctioned awardees and their certificates. 
• It will enable all the (nearly) 700 District Education Authorities and 35 States / UTs and 3 Central Educational Organizations (Kendriya Vidyalaya Sangathan, Navodaya Vidyalaya Sangathan and Sainik School Sangathan) to log in online and process the proposals received from schools and submit to the National Authority i.e. Department of Science and Technology (DST) for sanction. 
• The State and Districts authorities will also be able to submit the proposals for funds release for DLEPCs / SLEPCs online. 
• It will enable the National Authority (DST) to process the proposals and Awards / Funds so received from the State Authorities online and issue sanctions electronically, as per the approved norms. 
• The software will also have facilities for registration of schools, District Authorities and State Authority, sending and receiving online communications to / from these authorities, receiving utilisation certificates, summary reports, electronically generate standard and tailor-made MIS reports and so on. 
• It will also have the public domain home page where even public at large would be able to view not only the basic details of the scheme but also the awards sanctioned to various States / schools , various reports / documents / forms relating to scheme, submit suggestions / feedback and so on. 
• The service provider will also put in place a call centre, which will run six days a week, to cater to the need / grievances of stakeholders. 

About the INSPIRE Scheme: 
• INSPIRE stands for Innovation in Science Pursuit for inspired Research. 
• It is a National Programme implemented by the Ministry for attraction of talent amongst students to study science and pursue career with research. 
• The basic objective of INSPIRE is to communicate to the youth of the country the excitement of creative pursuit of science, attract talent to the study of science at an early age and thus build the required critical human resource pool for strengthening and expanding the science and technology system and R&D base. 
•The programme was launched by the Prime Minister of India on 13 December 2008. The implementation started during 2009-10. 



The National Payments Corporation of India launched two new services- an Aadhaar-based Remittance Service (ABRS) and a Query Service on Aadhaar Mapper (QSAM) on 9 October 2013. The National Payments Corporation of India started its function in the year 2009. It was established as the hub for all the electronic retail payment systems. 

The Aadhaar-based Remittance Service (ABRS) as of now has been launched with Bank of Baroda, Union Bank of India, State Bank of India, ICICI Bank, Mehsana Urban Co-operative Bank and Punjab and Maharashtra Co-operative Bank.

ABRS will enable transfer of the funds by making use of the Aadhar number. On the other hand, Query Service on Aadhaar Mapper (QSAM) will enable mapping of the status of a person by making use of the Aadhar number. 

Nandan Nilekani, chairman, Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) explained that UIDAI has already crossed 3 crore or 30 million Aadhaar-linked bank accounts. 

About National Payments Corporation of India: 

• National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) was incorporated in December 2008 and the Certificate of Commencement of Business was issued in April 2009. 
• It was incorporated as a Section 25 company under Companies Act and is aimed to operate for the benefit of all the member banks and their customers. 



A latest report on Social Media in India – 2013 released by the Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) and IMRB International on 8 October 2013 revealed- the number of social media users in urban India is expected to grow by 17 per cent by December 2013 due to the increasing affordability of smartphones and availability of cost-effective data plans. 

Report highlights: 

• The report estimates that the number of social media users by October 2013 will be 86 million and by December 2013, will be 91 million, showing an overall growth of 17 per cent since June 2013. 
• The number of social media users in urban India reached 78 million by June 2013. 
• Social networking through mobile phones is widely observed with 19.8 million users accessing the websites on mobiles and Facebook was the most accessed website. 
• Afforadable mobile Internet plans additionally serve to increase usage levels. 
• Non-working women are tipped to be the next emerging demographic segment with nearly 10 per cent of them accessing social media. 
• Based on the number of eligible voters, data of actual voter turnout from the Election Commission of India and field interviews, the report estimates that there could be a vote swing of 3 to 4 percent in 24 states – states where the internet users are sizeable. 
• The survey was conducted across 35 cities of the country. 

About IAMAI: 

The Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) was established in 2004 to address the challenges facing the digital and online industry including mobile content and services, online publishing, mobile advertising, online advertising, ecommerce and mobile & digital payments among others. 

Internet and Mobile Association of India is a not-for-profit industry body registered under the Societies Act, 1986.



The India Post on 11 October 2013 launched instant electronic money transfer service in partnership with Wall Street Exchange, (a company of UAE's Emirates Post Group) in New Delhi. 

In this regard India Post signed an agreement with Wall Street Exchange for launch of an International Electronic Money Transfer service through Instant Cash product of the Emirates Post Group. The service was launched by P. Gopinath, Secretary, Department of Posts, by receiving the first payment from United Arab Emirates. 

Instant Cash is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Emirates Post Group, and its services are available in 59 countries through more than 60000 locations. 

The salient features of the service are: 

1.Recipients will be able to receive their payment at any of the identified 17500 post offices by producing the unique transaction number along with their identity and KYC documents. 

2.Money will be available for payment immediately. 

3.Safe and secure transactions through established International Financial System of Universal Postal Union. 

4.The service will be rolled out nationally in a phased manner. 

5.The service will be provided through the International Financial System (IFS) of Universal Postal Union. 

About India Post: 

India Post is the largest postal network in the world and has completed 158 years of existence. 

It has a network of 1.55 lakh Post Offices in the country, of which more than 1.39 lakh are in the rural area. 

Besides mail, it also provides various financial services like small savings instruments under Post Office Savings Bank and Money Remittance, both domestic and international. 


Bilateral

India and Bangladesh on 5 October 2013 jointly inaugurated the India-Bangladesh Grid Inter-connection at Bheramara in Bangladesh. The joint venture was launched through video-conferencing from New Delhi. Speaking on the occasion, the Prime Minister described the inauguration as an important milestone in connecting the two countries and the border region through a growing web of cross-border energy links and trade. 

The Prime Minister also assured Bangladesh that India will remain a steadfast and long-term partner in development efforts. The transmission line in High Voltage Direct Current, HVDC, in Bheramara, will provide a safe and reliable interconnection between the power grids of the two countries. Dr Singh said, this will enable the supply of 500 megawatts of power from India to Bangladesh. 

The initiative undertaken will strengthen the bonds of friendship between the two countries and add a new dimension to bilateral relations. The initiative being undertaken strengthen the bonds of friendship between India and Bangladesh and add a rich new dimension to our bilateral relation. 

Economic development is the biggest challenge for all countries in South Asia. Our destinies are interlinked and so must our economy be. Both the Prime Ministers also jointly laid the foundation stone for 1320 megawatt Maitri Thermal Power Project, being developed by Bangladesh-India friendship power-company which is a joint venture of India's NTPC and Bangladesh Power Development Board. The historic event has taken India Bangladesh relations to a greater height. The 500 MW of power which will become available to Bangladesh in November 2013 will substantially help to bridge the power deficit in Bangladesh. 



The External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid on 6 October 2013 announced in Moscow that India and Russia will strengthen cooperation in civil nuclear energy and reach commercial agreements for the third and fourth reactors of Kudankulam atomic power plant in Tamil Nadu. 

Salman Khurshid explained that the first reactor of Kudankulam plant will start producing electricity soon and go up to the level of generating 1000 megawatts of power. The second unit will go critical by April 2014. It is important to note that Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited is setting up two 1000 MW reactors at Kudankulam in Tamil Nadu with the help of Russia. 

The North-South corridor is essential for promotion of trade. It is also worth noticing that Russia displayed its interest in the TAPI pipe line project starting from Turkmenistan and going via Afghanistan and Pakistan to India. 



Bangladesh Cabinet on 7 October 2013 ratified an extradition treaty with India to enable the handing over of suspects and convicted prisoners between the two countries. Now, the treaty would require the approval of the Parliament of Bangladesh and it could come into effect after both the countries exchange documents following legal procedures. 

About the Extradition Agreement: 

According to the agreement, only persons with charges like murders, culpable homicide and other serious offences would come under the purview of the deal while offenders of small crimes awarded with imprisonment for less than one year will also not be wanted under the treaty. 

The ratification of the extradition treaty will also paves the way for Bangladesh to transfer Indian separatist leader, Anup Chetia to India. Anup is in jail in Bangladesh after being arrested in 1997 for illegal stay, possessing unauthorized currencies and an unlicensed satellite telephone. He is a leader of the United Liberation Front of Assam, the largest separatist movement in the state of Assam. 

India and Bangladesh signed the extradition treaty on 28 January 2013 and the Union Cabinet of India has already ratified the treaty. 



India and Turkey on 7 October 2013 agreed to resolve terrorism. Both also agreed to evolve a wider dialogue mechanism to discuss issues of common interest including defence cooperation. 

Many such aspects of Indo-Turkish relationship were discussed between President Pranab Mukherji and Abdullah Gul, his Turkish counterpart and the Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan in Ankara during former’s visit to Turkey. 

During this visit, India conveyed to Turkey India’s concern on terrorism with reference to recent activities of cross border terrorism. There is a 200 strong Indian diaspora in Turkey. The people-to-people link is a great asset in the building of closer bilateral relations between India and Turkey. 



India and Japan on 9 October 2013 signed MoU to do a joint feasibility study of High Speed Railway system on the Mumbai-Ahmedabad route. 

The aim of the Joint study is to prepare a feasibility report of High Speed Railway system on the Mumbai-Ahmedabad route with speed of 300-350 kmph. 

The cost of the study will be shared equally between India and Japan. The study will take 18 months to complete. The study will include traffic forecasting, alignment surveys and undertake comparative Study of High Speed Railway Technology and System. 

India and Japan also decided to set up A Joint Monitoring Committee which comprises the Ministry of Railways, Planning Commission, the Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of External Affairs for the Indian side and the MOFA (Ministry of Foreign Affairs), the METI (Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industries), the MLIT (Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism), the MOF (Ministry of Finance), EoJ (Embassy of Japan in India) and JICA from Japan. 



Government of India and Indonesia on 11 October 2013 signed six Memorandum of Understandings (MoUs) in Jakarta in various fields to strengthen the cooperation between the two nations. 

The MoUs were inked in the presence of Prime minister Manmohan singh and Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono at the Istan Merdeka (presidential secretariat) in the Indonesian capital, Jakarta. 

These MoUs were signed during the first bilateral visit of Prime minister of India Dr. Manmohan Singh to Indonesia from 10 to 12 October 2013. 

The agreements are in the fields of: 

1.Health and family welfare. 

2.Cooperation on Combating Corruption. 

3.Combating Illicit Trafficking in Narcotics, Drugs, Psychotropic Substances and their Precursors. 

4.Cooperation in the field of Disaster Management. 

5.Training administrators and 6.Promoting friendly, cooperative and collaborative institutional relations. 



The Prime Minister of India Dr. Manmohan Singh on 12 October 2013 concluded his four-day visit to Brunei and Indonesia. Prime Minister visit to Brunei and Indonesia is a part of expanding India’s ‘Look East’ policy to beyond economic ties. Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh paid an official visit to Brunei Darussalam from 9-11 October 2013 to attend the 11th ASEAN-India Summit and 8th East Asia Summit. Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh paid a State Visit to Indonesia from 10-12 October, 2013. 

Highlights of the visit: 

1. Dr. Manmohan Singh held bilateral meetings with Prime Ministers of Asian superpowers like Japan and Australia as well on the sidelines of ASEAN and East Asia Summits in Brunei. 

2. Prime Minister also announced a separate mission for ASEAN, a 10-member block of South East Asian nations, with a full time ambassador. 

3. Dr. Manmohan Singh also stated that a Free Trade Agreement on services and investments would be signed with ASEAN by end of 2013 to help meet India-ASEAN trade to 100 billion Dollars by 2015. 

4. During the first official bilateral visit to Indonesia, six pacts were signed between India and Indonesia including in areas like health, anti-corruption, narcotics, disaster management and academics. 

5. Both the countries, India and Indonesia agreed to expand their strategic partnership by holding annual summits and an eminent persons group will be set up to expand the relationship. 

New areas of co-operation have been identified such as space, nuclear energy, food, security, counter-terrorism, trans-border threats from jehadi forces. 


Economy

Jet-Etihad deal was approved by SEBI (Securities Exchange Board of India) on 1 October 2013. Jet Airways had proposed to sale 24 percent stake to Abu Dhabi-based Etihad. 

The Jet-Etihad deal was announced in April 2013 and because of objections from regulators the deal was stuck half-way. The proposal will now be considered by the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs. 

The Competition Commission of India (CCI) had also asked for changes in the original deal. The two parties had informed the fair trade regulator about the changes in the deal and approval from the CCI is expected soon. 

SEBI informed the Finance Ministry about its decision on 25 September 2013. With this deal in place, Jet eventually has a 51 per cent stake in the company, Etihad 24 per cent and the public the remaining 25 per cent. 



The Reserve Bank of India on 4 October 2013 fixed the reference rate of rupee against US dollar at 61.4050 and the euro at 83.6790 as against 61.9348 and 84.2360 on 3 October 2013. 

The exchange rates for the pound and yen against the rupee were quoted at 99.2857 a pound and 63.25 per 100 yen, based on reference rates for the dollar and cross-currency quotes at noon. 

The reference rate is based on the noon rates of select banks and the SDR-Rupee rate would be based on this rate. 



SEBI ushered in major reforms to attract overseas investors. It has announced new Foreign Portfolio Investor regulations for easier registration process and operating framework for investors from abroad. 

The new class of investors - FPIs - will encompass all Foreign Institutional Investors, their sub-accounts and Qualified Foreign Investors. 

They will be divided in three categories as per their risk profile. The Know Your Client - KYC requirements and other registration procedures will be much simpler for FPIs compared to current practices. 

The SEBI has also decided to grant them a permanent registration. 

SEBI also approved setting up 'Designated Depository Participants which will register FPIs on behalf of the market regulator subject to compliance with KYC norms.



The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on 7 October 2013 reduced the Marginal Standing Facility (MSF) rate to 9 per cent from 9.5 per cent to improve liquidity in the system. In a release issued from Mumbai the RBI stated that the decision was taken after a review of evolving liquidity conditions. 

MSF allows banks to borrow money from RBI at a higher rate when there is a significant liquidity crunch. 

The RBI further stated that it conducted open market purchase operations of 9974 crore rupees with the aim of injecting liquidity into the system. 

This is the second reduction in the rate since the September 20 mid-quarter monetary policy review, when it was lowered to 9.5 per cent from 10.25 per cent. 



The total approximate earnings of Indian Railways on originating basis during 1 April to 30 September 2013 were 65354.64 crore rupees compared to 58661.79 crore rupees during the same period last year, registering an increase of 11.41 per cent. 

The total goods earnings have gone up from 40293.70 crore rupees during 1 April 2012 – 30 September 2012 to 44191.92 crore rupees during 1 April – 30 September 2013, registering an increase of 9.67 per cent. The total passenger revenue earnings during 1 April 2013 – 30 September 2013 were 18099.83 crore rupees compared to 15582.42 crore rupees during the same period in 2012, registering an increase of 16.16 per cent. 

The approximate revenue earnings from other coaching amounted to 1850.22 crore rupees during April - September 2013 compared to 1510.59 crore rupees during the same period last year, an increase of 22.48 per cent. The total approximate numbers of passengers booked during 1April– 30 September 2013 were 4257.55 million compared to 4270.09 million during the same period last year, showing a decrease of 0.29 per cent. 

In the suburban and non-suburban sectors, the numbers of passengers booked during April-September 2013 were 2275.20 million and 1982.35 million compared to 2212.06 million and 2058.03 million during the same period last year, showing an increase of 2.85 per cent and a decrease of 3.68 per cent respectively. 



As per the data released by the Union Ministry of Finance, Government of India on 7 October 2013, Gross collection from direct taxes that include personal income tax and corporate taxes, increased by 10.66 percent to 301250 crore rupees in April-September period in 2013 as compared to 272221 crore rupees recorded in the same period in 2012. 

Collections from personal income tax increased by 16.15 percent to 106231 crore rupees in the first half of the current financial year as compared to 91463 crore rupees recorded in the same period last year. 

However, there was a sluggish increase in corporate taxes due to slowdown in growth that has hit general demands in the country. Gross collections of corporate taxes increased by 7.93 percent to 192308 crore rupees during the period under review. 

Net direct tax collection was registered at 250959 crore rupees for the first six months of the current financial year 2013-14 as compared to 226653 crore rupees recorded in the same period last fiscal 2012-13, registering an year- on-year increase of 10.72 percent. 

Difference in gross and net tax collection is due to refunds. Wealth tax collection increased by 5.27 percent to 499 crore rupees during the period under review, while the collection of Securities Transaction Tax (STT) dropped by 6.45 percent to 2210 crore rupees. 



As per the data released by Ministry of Commerce and Industry, India's Exports during September, 2013 were valued at 27679.33 million US dollars (176461.53 crore rupees) which was 11.15 per cent higher in Dollar terms (29.77 per cent higher in Rupee terms) than the level of 24902.00 million US dollars (135978.63 crore rupees) during September, 2012. 

Cumulative value of exports for the period April-September 2013 -14 was 152105.40 million US dollars ( 901194.97 crore rupees) as against 144673.91 million US dollars (790838.40 crore rupees) registering a growth of 5.14 per cent in Dollar terms and growth of 13.95 per cent in Rupee terms over the same period last year. 

Imports

Imports during September, 2013 were valued at 34439.50 million US dollars (219559.04 crore rupees) representing a negative growth of 18.10 per cent in Dollar terms and a negative growth of 4.38 per cent in Rupee terms over the level of imports valued at 42051.45 million US dollars (229624.04 crore rupees) in September 2012. 

Cumulative value of imports for the period April-September 2013-14 was 232231.64 million US dollars (1365699.30 crore rupees) as against 236493.90 million US dollars (1292490.99 crore rupees) registering a negative growth of 1.80 per cent in Dollar terms and growth of 5.66 per cent in Rupee terms over the same period last year. 

Crude Oil And Non-Oil Imports: 

Oil imports during September, 2013 were valued at 13196.5 million US dollars which was 5.94 per cent lower than oil imports valued at 14029.5 million US dollars in the corresponding period last year. Oil imports during April- September, 2013-14 were valued at 82876.1 million US dollars which was 3.58 per cent higher than the oil imports of 80011.6 million US dollars in the corresponding period last year. 

Non-oil imports during September, 2013 were estimated at 21243.0 million US dollars which was 24.19 per cent lower than non-oil imports of 28022.0 million US dollars in September, 2012. Non-oil imports during April-September, 2013-14 were valued at149355.5 million US dollars which was 4.55 per cent lower than the level of such imports valued at 156482.3 million US dollars in April-September 2012-13. 

Trade Balance: 

The trade deficit for April-September, 2013-14 was estimated at 80126.24 million US dollars which was lower than the deficit of 91819.99 million US dollars during April-September, 2012-13. 



As per the data released by Ministry of Railways on 10 October 2013, Indian Railways carried 511.00 million tonnes of revenue earning freight traffic during the first half of fiscal 2013. 

The freight carried shows an increase of 29.65 million tonnes over the freight traffic of 481.35 million tonnes actually carried during the corresponding period last year, registering an increase of 6.16 per cent. During the month of September 2013, the revenue earning freight traffic carried by Indian Railways was 84.86 million tonnes. 

There is an increase of 8.93 million tonnes over the actual freight traffic of 75.93 million tonnes carried by the Indian Railways during the same period last year, showing an increase of 11.76 per cent. 



The Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) on 9 October 2013 proposed new range of measures for stock exchanges in order to deal with the fraudulent trading activities in the securities market. These measures include time-bound approach as well as well-defined parameters. 

SEBI announced the measures in the backdrop of at least four instances of incorrect trades which in turn disrupted the market in the recent past. The latest one includes placement of incorrect orders on the National Stock Exchange in February 2013. SEBI, for this purpose, released the discussion paper on policy in context with the incorrect trades. 

SEBI explained that the objective of this is to have a uniform policy for trade annulment. The stock exchanges shall adopt the transparent and time-bound approach in order to decide the cases related to annulment of trade, before the final settlement is made. 

SEBI also announced that cancellation should take place only in certain exceptional situations. These exceptional situations include market manipulation and fraud. The discussion paper said that in order to facilitate certainty to trades executed on the stock exchange's trading platform, the trades should not be annulled under normal circumstances. Trade annulment should come only under certain circumstances which include regulatory action, error which impacts the sanctity of price discover, market manipulation as well as fraud. Apart from all this, the SEBI also proposed that the bourses should analyse the impact of trade annulment. 

SEBI, after releasing the discussion paper explained that prevention of the practices like these was a crucial part of the risk management framework of stock exchanges. The stock exchanges also have online surveillance mechanisms for the purpose of preventing market manipulations. 



International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, on 7 October 2013 launched a 1 billion Dollars offshore bond programme to strengthen India’s capital markets and attract greater foreign investment. 

Under the programme, IFC will issue rupee-linked bonds and use the proceeds to finance private sector investment in the country. This programme will help bring depth and diversity to the offshore rupee market and pave the way for an alternative source of funding for Indian companies. IFC’s offshore bond programme will pave the way for an alternative source of funding for Indian companies. 

About the off shore rupee bonds? 
• These are bonds denominationated in rupees but issued in international marklets. 
• Investor has to convert its currency into rupees before investing. 
• The return and final redumption is also in rupees. 

Why are such off shore bonds are important? 
• They are an important way of internationalising indian currency. 
• It will improve acceptance of the Indian currency in setting trade. 
• A deep market for local currency will help reduce dollar needs of the economy. • The diversity fund raising options for Indian borrowers. 

About IFC: 

IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development institution focused exclusively on the private sector in developing countries. 

Established in 1956, IFC is owned by 184 member countries, a group that collectively determines its policies. 

IFC works in more than a 100 developing countries allows companies and financial institutions in emerging markets to create jobs, generate tax revenues, improve corporate governance and environmental performance, and contribute to their local communities. 

IFC’s vision is that people should have the opportunity to escape poverty and improve their lives. 


Business
The Indian Railways on 3 October 2013 signed a pact with Rashtriya Ispat Nigam Limited (RINL) to set up the country's biggest Forged Wheel plant at Lalganj, Raebarelli in Uttar Pradesh. 
About the Forged Wheel Plant: 
• The Plant to be set with an investment of about 1100 crore Rupees will produce one lakh numbers of Forged Wheels per annum in the First phase for Locos and High speed trains. The capacity of the plant can be doubled in the Second phase for a production of over two lakh wheels per annum. 
• The steel requirement for the plant located in 40 acres is to be supplied by the Rashtriya Ispat Nigam Limited (RINL). 
• The Factory expected to be operational in over three years, could provide employment to about 600 people. 
• The Forged wheel plant will reduces India's dependence on imports of high speed forged wheels for trains. 
• The quality of wheel manufactured in the plant will be tested and certified by International certifying agency TTCI, USA. 
• Forged wheels are essentially required in the rolling stock for running longer trains at higher speed. 



The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) on 3 October 2013 cleared Jet Airways proposed sale of 24 per cent equity to Abu Dhabi-based Etihad Airways, paving the way for the biggest ever foreign investment in the Indian aviation sector. 

The proposal was of Etihad to subscribe 27263372 Jet Airways shares of 10 Rupees each, amounting to 24 percent of post-issue paid-up equity share capital for 2057.66 crore Rupees. 

The decision was taken at a CCEA meeting chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in New Delhi. The approval will result in foreign investment amounting to over 2057 crore Rupees in the country. 

The Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) has recommended the proposal. Jet-Etihad deal was already approved by SEBI (Securities Exchange Board of India) on 1 October 2013. 



The Institute of Company Secretaries of India (ICSI), functioning under the aegis of the Ministry of Corporate Affairs, on 4 October 2013 launched the ICSI Primer on Companies Act 2013 on its Foundation Day. The ICSI Primer on Companies Act 2013 was launched by the President, Council of the ICSI- SN Ananthasubramanian. 

Primary Features of the ICSI Primer on Companies Act 2013: 
• The ICSI Primer on Companies Act 2013 is a set of 16 videos of around 35 minutes each. 
• They highlight various aspects of the new Companies Act 2013. 
• These videos have been uploaded on the website of the ICSI and also on YouTube so that the professionals and the common people, all, can access them freely and learn about some important aspects of the new Companies Act 2013. • The videos explain the fundamental provisions of law in as simple a language as possible through interactive discussions. 
• Distinguished experts from government, regulators, industry, academia and professionals have participated as panelists and a leading advocate is the anchor in all episodes. 

SN Ananthasubramanian explained that ICSI was undertaking a large number of initiatives to build up the human resource capacity in the country to implement the Companies Act, 2013. These include about 500 seminars, workshops and study circles during this quarter. These also include a number of publications and guidance notes on the new law. On the occasion, the Institute of Company Secretaries of India also launched a novel facility called the Corporate Compliance Executive Certificate. 



Bayer CropScience India on 3 October 2013 announced that it launched a new multi-crop breeding station in Chandippa, situated around 46 km from Hyderabad. The new breeding station will focus on the breeding and development of germplasm for high performing hybrids in rice, millet and cotton. 

Stephan Gerlich, Country Group Head, Bayer in India explained that this was one of the most significant investments made by Bayer CropScience India over the last three years. Chandippa will serve as a strategic site for product development activities in India and Asia-Pacific markets. Since 2010, Bayer CropScience India has invested around 100 crore Rupees in different projects. 

Some of these projects include capacity expansion at its existing Seed Processing plant in Toopran near Hyderabad and a new mustard breeding station in Palwal, Haryana. 

Primary Highlights of the new multi-crop breeding station in Chandippa: 
• The new multi-crop breeding station in Chandippa is spread over 36 acres of land. 
• The breeding station will have all the aspects of R&D infrastructure. 
• The station will be equipped with screen houses, fully automated greenhouses, open fields for trials as well as various laboratories. All these facilities will be used for speeding up the breeding cycles. 
• The labs of the station will support activities in resistance breeding, qualitative testing as well as tissue culture. 
• The new facility will also have a cultivable area of 25 acres for field experimentation. 
• The Chandippa breeding station will employ approximately 80 people. 
• The main highlight of the station will be its rain water harvesting pond, which is the first of its kind facility in India. This rain water harvesting pond has been imported from the Netherlands. It is a fully automated system which will harvest the rain water, which in turn will be filtered and utilised for cooling in the greenhouses. 



Indira Gandhi International Airport, New Delhi and Birmingham Airport, UK on 7 October 2013 signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to formalise a working relationship and commit to developing links between the two cities (Birmingham and Delhi). CEO of Birmingham Airport Paul Kehoe and Head of Airline Marketing and Route Development of Delhi International Airport Limited (DIAL) Kiran Jain signed the MoU at the World Routes conference in Las Vegas to become Sister Airports. 

• The MoU will allow the sharing information and best practice to enhance links between Birmingham and Delhi and promote tourism and business opportunities at both ends of the route. 
• The MoU signifies a formal commitment by both parties to work collaboratively in order to strengthen trade and tourism links between the two cities. 

The development followed the recent launch of direct flights between the two airports. Air India had launched a direct flight between Delhi and Birmingham in August 2013 with a Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft. 

Birmingham Airport: 
• Located in the centre of the UK, Birmingham Airport handles more than nine million passengers a year and is the third largest airport outside of London. 
• It has a core catchment of ten million people and some 200000 Indian people live in the West Midlands region alone; 15 percent of England’s total. 

Indira Gandhi International Airport- Delhi: Indira Gandhi International Airport- Delhi handles 36 million passengers and well over half a million ton of cargo pass through it annually. 



Samsung Electronics on 9 October 2013 became the first manufacturer to launch the first curved screen smartphone of the world. 

The new device is known as Galaxy Round and features flexible 5.7-inch HD display. The device curves from side to side. 


Awards

The Minister of State for Commerce and Industry D. Purandeswari on 30 September 2013 presented the Export Promotion Council for EOUs and SEZs (EPCES) Export Awards to EOUs and SEZs for Outstanding Export Performance. 

The objective of the awards was to recognise the meritorious efforts of EOUs and SEZ Units for their outstanding export performance for the year 2010-11. 

The awards were presented in the fields of gem and jewellery, engineering, plastic products, electronic, computer hardware, services, readymade garments, handicrafts, chemical and allied products, textile products and food products. It is important to note that the SEZ Scheme, which is operating in more than 130 countries, in one form or another, is contributing effectively in bringing investments, new technologies and best managerial practices. 

The EOU Scheme has also been reviewed after the withdrawal of income tax benefit. The exports from EOU and SEZ Sector are to the extent of 556295 crore Rupees during 2012-13 with a contribution of 34 percent to national exports. PC Nambiar, Chairman, EPCES informed that there is an export growth of 16 times from EOU and SEZ Sector since inception of the Council in 2003 and the contribution of this sector to national exports during 2012-13 is 34 percent. 

Minister of State for Commerce and Industry presented the export awards to EOUs and SEZ Units. Some of the prominent awardees included Reliance Industries Ltd., Aurobindo Pharma Ltd., Shree Ganesh Jewellery House and Moser Baer India Ltd. among others. 



A senior Indian journalist, Ravi Shankar Narsimhan, on 29 September 2013 was presented with Friendship award by China - the highest honor given to foreigners. 

Narsimhan is the executive editor in the overseas edition of the Beijing based China Daily. Ravi Shankar hails from Andhra Pradesh. Narsimhan has worked with China Daily for 11 years. He was given the award for helping China better tell its stories to the outside world. 

He is one among the 50 foreign experts from 20 countries and diverse fields, who have been rewarded. 

The Friendship Award is an annual award given by the Chinese government to honour outstanding foreign experts in China. 



The President of India, Pranab Mukherjee presented the First National Award for Senior Citizens - Vayoshreshtha Samman, 2013 on the occasion of International Day of Older Persons at a function in New Delhi on 1 October 2013. 

The First National Award For Senior Citizens - Vayoshreshtha Samman, 2013 were given in the following categories:
• National Award for Best Institution for providing services to senior citizens and Awareness Generation 
• National Award for Best State in implementing the Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens (MWPSC) Act, 2007, & providing services and facilities to senior citizens 
• National Award for Centenarian Senior Citizen 
• National Award for Iconic Mother 
• National Award for Lifetime Achievement 
• National Award for Creative Art 
• National Award for Sports & Adventure Award (Male) 
• National Award for Sports and Adventure (Female) 

Steps taken for senior citizens by the Government of India:
• In context with the senior citizens of India, The Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act, 2007 was enacted. 
• Apart from this, Model Rules were also brought out by the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment. 
• The Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment explained that ageing posed two main challenges- the need to ensure care and protection of the elderly so that they live a healthy, dignified and productive life and secondly, the older people must be looked at as partners in progress rather than a burden on society. 
• The Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment announced National Policy on Older Persons (NPOP) in 1999 to ensure active and productive ageing by evolving a framework of providing financial, medical, social and emotional support. 
• Another policy called National Policy for Senior Citizens 2011 was also introduced. 
• The Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act, 2007 essentially aims at creating an enabling mechanism to make the claim for maintenance simpler, speedier and affordable. 
• The grant-in-aid scheme called the Integrated Programme for Older Persons extends grants to NGOs for supporting old age homes, day care centres and mobile medi-care units. 
• The Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment launched the Project ‘NICE’ (National Initiative on Care for Elderly). This is implemented through National Institute of Social Defence (NISD), an autonomous body of the Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment in 2000. 
• National programme for Health care of Elderly (NPHCE) has been formulated and implemented in the country through the ministry of Health and Family Welfare. 

The major objectives of the NPHCE include provision of dedicated health care facilities for elderly at various levels of State healthcare delivery system. 



James Rothman and Randy Schekman of US as well as German-born Thomas Suedhof won the 2013 Nobel Prize for Medicine and Physiology on 7 October 2013. They were awarded for their groundbreaking work on how the cell organises its transport system. 

James Rothman, Randy Schekman and Thomas Suedhof work at the US universities. The three of them discovered the complex transport system in the human body which makes the delivery of the life-saving proteins and molecules at right place and right time.

The Nobel Committee announced that the three of them were honoured for their discoveries of machinery regulating vesicle traffic, a major transport system in our cells. The value of each prize is 1.2 million US Dollar. 

Individual Contribution: In their discovery, Schekman discovered a set of genes which are needed for vesicle traffic. Rothman discovered the protein machinery which enables the vesicles to fuse with their targets in order to allow the transfer of cargo. Sudhof, in the meanwhile, revealed how the signals instruct the vesicles to release cargo with accuracy. 



Peter Higgs, United Kingdom and Francois Englert, Belgium jointly awarded Nobel Prize for Physics 2013 on 8 October 2013. They were awarded for the theoretical discovery of a mechanism that contributes to our understanding of the origin of mass of subatomic particles. 

Their contribution forms the cornerstone of modern particle physics. Higgs and Francois Englert discovered a quantum field which is a distribution of energy, throughout the universe. It is a field with special properties. When the field is disturbed, waves travel through it. The dimmest possible wave is called a particle in the field. They called this field as Higgs field. In the Higgs field particles are called as Higgs Boson. 

The existence of Higgs Boson was confirmed through the discovery of the predicted fundamental particle by the ATLAS and CMS experiments at CERN's Large Hadron Collider (LHG) near Geneva, Switzerland. 

About The Higgs boson: 
• Higgs boson popularly known as the God particle. 
• It is sub atomic particle. 
• Elementary particles may have gained their mass because of the Higgs boson particle. 

About the Nobel Prize: 
• Alfred Nobel signed On 27 November 1895 his last will and testament, giving the largest share of his fortune to a series of prizes in Physics, Chemistry, Physiology or Medicine, Literature and Peace. 
• In 1968, Sveriges Riksbank (Sweden's central bank) established The Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel. 
• The Nobel Prizes are annual international awards bestowed by Scandinavian committees in recognition of cultural and scientific advances. 



Michael Levitt, a British and US citizen of Stanford University, US-Austrian Martin Karplus of Strasbourg University and US-Israeli Arieh Warshel of the University of Southern California share The Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2013 on 9 October 2013. 

While announcing their names Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences told that the Nobel Laureates in Chemistry 2013 have made it possible to map the mysterious ways of chemistry by using computers. 

• They were awarded Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2013 for the development of multi scale models for complex chemical systems. 

• The trio devised computer simulations to understand chemical processes. 

• Their research laid the foundations for new kinds of pharmaceuticals. 

• Their research contributed to exploring multiple options in cyber space. 



Alice Munro won Nobel Prize 2013 in literature and became the first Canadian woman to take the Nobel Prize since its launch in 1901. 

The Swedish Academy which selects Nobel literature winners described her as the master of the contemporary short story. Alice Munro,82, is 13th women who got Noble Prize. 



The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) on 11 October 2013 won the Nobel Peace Prize for the year 2013 for its extensive efforts to eliminate chemical weapons. The award was announced by Nobel Committee chairman Thorbjoern Jagland in Oslo, the capital city of Norway. 

About the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW):

• The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) is an independent, international body set up in 1997 to implement the Chemical Weapons Convention. 

• The organisation is presently involved in destroying Syria's stockpiles of chemical weapons - the first time the OPCW has worked in a war zone. 

• It carries out inspections of destruction procedures, as well as evaluating members' own declarations, in order to verify that the convention is being adhered to. 

• It is based in The Hague, Netherland and has 189 member states, covering around 98 percent of the world's population. These member nations have agreed to work together to create a world free from chemical weapons. 

• The OPCW employs around 500 people and has a budget of 75m Euros (102m Dollars, 63m Pounds) in 2010. 

•It is an autonomous organisation with a working relationship with the United Nations. 

• Ahmet Uzumcu is the Present Director-General of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons. 

The Nobel Peace Prize has been awarded to 125 Nobel Laureates since 1901. 

The 1.25 million Dollar prize will be presented to OPCW at Oslo on 10 December 2013. 



Karan Thapar, television journalist chosen for the International Press Institute (IPI) – India award for excellence in journalism 2013 on 8 October 2013 for his interviews on the Devil's Advocate programme on CNN IBN. He was selected by a distinguished jury of editors and publishers headed by the former Chief Justice of India, A. S. Anand. 

About the International Press Institute: 
• The IPI was founded in October 1950. 
• Its members are spread in over 120 countries. 
• The International Press Institute is a global network of editors, media executives and leading journalists. 
•It is the institute dedicated to safeguarding the freedom of press, the protection of freedom of opinion and expression, the promotion of the free flow of news and information, and the improvement of the practices of journalism. 



Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani teen shot by the Taliban for championing girls' education won the European Union's (EU) Sakharov human rights prize 2013 on 10 October 2013. 

In 2012 the award went to detained Iranians, lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh and film maker Jafar Panahi, to honour those standing up for a better Iran. 

Past winners of the Sakharov Prize include South African anti apartheid hero Nelson Mandela and former UN secretary general Kofi Annan. 

About The Sakharov Prize: 

• The Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought is awarded each year by the European Parliament. 

• The prize was set up in 1988 to honour individuals or organisations for their efforts on behalf of human rights and fundamental freedoms. 

• The Sakharov Prize for free speech is awarded annually in memory of Soviet physicist and dissident Andrei Sakharov. 



Eminent agricultural scientist MS Swaminathan on 10 October 2013 selected for the Indira Gandhi Award for National Integration for the year 2012. 

About MS Swaminathan: 

• MS Swaminathan (Born 7 August 1925) is an Indian geneticist and former member of Rajya Sabha. 

• MS Swaminathan contributed to the agricultural renaissance in the country and led the nation to achieve green revolution. 

• MS Swaminathan has served as Director of the Indian Agricultural Research Institute, New Delhi (1966-72). 

• He served as Director General of the Indian Council of Agricultural Research and Secretary to the Government of India, Department of Agricultural Research and Education (1972-79). 

About Indira Gandhi Award for National Integration: 

The Indian national congress, in its centenary year 1985, instituted an Indira Gandhi award for national integration to give recognition to outstanding contribution to this cause by distinguished individuals or institutions. 

The award carries a citation and cash award of 5 lakh rupees. 

Previous recipients of the Award are Aruna Asaf Ali, P N Haksar, M S Subbulakshmi, A P J Abdul Kalam and Shankar Dayal Sharma and Rajiv Gandhi (posthumously). 



Varun Arora, a young innovator from India on 10 October 2013 selected for United Nations 10 Young Innovators Competition 2013. Varun Arora is among 10 people from around the world selected for a prestigious United Nations award in recognition of their work as entrepreneurs and use of technology to change the world. 

Varun Arora awarded for his creation Open Curriculum, an online platform for local educational material for standard, primary and secondary schooling. 

The recipients of the 10 Young Innovators Competition organized by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) Telecom come from a wide range of countries and have worked on diverse issues such as marine protection, reduction of food waste and immigration. 

The UN competition is open to young social entrepreneurs between the ages of 18 and 26 and seeks innovative digital solutions in the form of start-ups or initial concepts meeting global developmental challenges. 


Persons / Appointments

S. Varadarajan on 1 October 2013 took over charge as chairman and managing director (CMD) of Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited (BPCL).


S.Varadarajan has succeeded R.K. Singh. Prior to his appointment as the CMD, Varadarajan was serving as the Director (finance) of the company.



Myanmar’s Moe Set Wine, 25, was on 3 October 2013 selected as the first Miss Universe contestant to represent her country in more than 50 years time. The US-educated business graduate was chosen as the first Miss Universe contestant who will represent Myanmar in over 50 years. She will be seen on the stage at the global beauty pageant in Moscow in November 2013. 

It is important to note that Myanmar last sent the Miss Universe contender in the year 1961. After being selected, Moe Set Wine explained that she felt like a part of Myanmar’s history. The controversy revolves around the dress code. The traditional dress of Myanmar is still mandatory in the high schools, universities as well as most of the state Workplaces. 

The traditional dress of Myanmar is the demure longyi, which is actually a sheet of cotton or silk cloth wrapped around the waist and stretching to the feet. Dress designer of Moe Set Wine- Htay Htay Tin, explained that in the past people in Myanmar did not dare to wear the clothes like these, but now the things were improving and so designers got a chance to create what they like. 



Arundhati Bhattacharya on 7 October 2013 took over as the Chairperson of the State Bank of India (SBI). She is the first woman to take charge as the Chairperson of SBI, the largest bank of India. She succeeded Pratip Chaudhuri who retired on 30 September 2013. 

The list of women occupying major posts in domestic banking and financial services: 
• Chanda Kochhar is the managing director & CEO of ICICI Bank, 
• Shikha Sharma heads Axis Bank while Naina Lal Kidwai is the country head of HSBC India. 
• Kalpana Morparia is the chief executive officer at JP Morgan India Pvt Ltd. 
• The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has also had women occupying top posts. 
• Shyamala Gopinath, K.J. Udeshi and Usha Thorat have all been deputy governors. 
• Vijayalakshmi R. Iyer is the chairperson and managing director of Bank of India. 
• Archana Bhargava is the chairperson & managing director of United Bank of India and S.A. Panse heads Allahabad Bank. 



Ratan Tata, India’s leading industrialist was inducted into National Academy of Engineering (NAE) in the US for his outstanding contributions to industrial development in India as well as the world. Apart from Ratan Tata, eight Indian- Americans were also inducted in the NAE. 75-year-old Ratan tata, the Chairman Emeritus of the Tata Group was inducted as the Foreign Associate. 

About the National Academy of Engineering (NAE): 
• The National Academy of Engineering (NAE) was founded in the year 1964. 
• It is the private, independent, nonprofit institution which offers the engineering leadership to the US. 
• In the year 2013, NAE elected 69 new members and 11 foreign associates, after which the membership of NAE became 2250 and the number of foreign associates became 211. 

Other Indian-Americans inducted into National Academy of Engineering: 
• Ganesh Kailasam, from Dow Chemical. 
• Vijay Kumar, from University of Pennsylvania. 
• Bal Raj Sehgal, emeritus professor of nuclear power safety, Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm. 
• Pradeep S Sindhu, founder, Juniper Networks. 
• Krishna P Singh, president and chief executive officer, Holtec International. 

It is important to note that the percentage of US engineering graduates among all its graduates is 1/3 of the European average and 1/6 of the Asian competitor average. 

About Ratan Tata: 
• Ratan Tata was the chairman of Tata Sons, the holding company of the Tata Group, from 1991 until his retirement at the end of 2012. 

• He was also chairman of the major Tata companies, including Tata Motors, Tata Steel, Tata Consultancy Services, Tata Power, Tata Global Beverages, Tata Chemicals, Indian Hotels, and Tata Teleservices. 

• He is also a member of the Indian Prime Minister’s Council on Trade and Industry. 



S. R. Bansal took the charge on 5 October 2013 as the Chairman and Managing Director of Corporation Bank. 



Ethiopia's parliament on 7 October 2013 elected Mulatu Teshome as the country's new president for a six-year term. Mulatu Teshome will replace Girma Wolde Giorgis, who first took the post in 2001 and was re-elected in 2007. 

Mulatu Teshome was elected at a joint session of the House of Peoples Representatives (HPR) and the House of Federation (HoF). Mulatu Teshome is the Fourth president of Ethiopia.

About Mulatu Teshome: 
• The 57-year-old Mulatu Teshome, born in Arjo town, Eastern Wolega Zone of the Oromia Regional State in Ethiopia, received education in China. He holds a Ph.D. 
• Before being elected president, Mulatu also held government positions including that of speaker of the House of Federation, state minister of finance and economic development and minister of agriculture. 
• Mulatu, who like all Ethiopia is known by his first name, comes from the Oromo people, the country's largest ethnic group. 
• He has also served as Ethiopia's ambassador to China and Japan. 
• He served as Ethiopia’s ambassador to Turkey until his appointment. 

In Ethiopia, the office of presidency is a largely symbolic and ceremonial post and real power rests in the hands of the prime minister. The present Prime Minister of Ethiopia is Hailemariam Desalegn. 

About Ethiopia: 

Ethiopia is the ninth largest country in Africa and is located in the northeastern region, popularly referred to as the Horn of Africa. 

As a landlocked country, Ethiopia is bound to the east by Djibouti and Somalia, to the north and northeast by Eritrea, to the south by Kenya and to the west by the Sudan. 

The total land area is 440,284 miles (1.1 million square kilometers). There are ten major rivers (7000 km long) and lakes (7400 sq. km. in area). 



Government of Pakistan decided on 9 October 2013 to appoint Pakistani veteran diplomat Syed Ibne Abbas as the new Pakistani envoy to India. He will succeeded by Salman Bashir. 



Wilfried Martens, nine-times Prime Minister of Belgium and who led the European Union's Christian Democrat group, died on 9 October 2013 at Lokeren, in East Flanders. He was 77 years old. 


Books

The book titled Haunted by Fire: Essays on Caste, Class, Exploitation and Emancipation authored by Mythily Sivaraman released in International Centre in New Delhi on 1 October 2013. 

The book focused on essays range from agrarian unrest, caste oppression, land, labour and wages, the centrality of class struggle, the early promise of change, the radical course of left struggles, the coercive apparatus of the state, issues of impunity and the way the Emergency worked out on the ground. 

About Mythili Sivaraman:
• Mythili Sivaraman is a Women Rights Activist. 
• She is currently one of the Vice Presidents of the All India Democratic Women's Association (Women's wing of Communist Party of India (Marxist)). 
• She worked as a Research Assistant in the Permanent Mission of India to the UN (July 1966 to mid-1968). 



The autobiography of Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani schoolgirl who was shot by the Taliban for supporting girls’ education released on 8 October 2013 in London. 

Malala Yousafzai’s story is detailed in I Am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and was Shot by the Taliban, co-written with British journalist Christina Lamb, and tells of the day two Taliban gunmen boarded her school bus on 9 October 2012, and shot her in the head. 



Bollywood actor Aamir Khan on 11 October 2013 released Mansoor Khan’s book The Third Curve: The End of Growth as We Know It at the India International Centre in New Delhi. 

Mansoor's book: The Third Curve describes the co-relation between the compulsions of economic growth and the limits imposed on man by nature. The Book also emphasises on the end of the economic growth. 


Sports

Sania Mirza of India and Cara Black of Zimbabwe won the Toray Pan Pacific Open tennis championship women's doubles title by defeating Hao-Ching Chan (Chinese Taipei) and Liezel Huber (USA) 4-6, 6-0, 11-9 in final at Tokyo on 28 September 2013. 

Sania Mirza her partner Cara Black playing together for the first time had earlier shocked top seeds and Wimbledon champions Su-Wei Hsieh of Chinese Taipei and Shuai Peng of China in the semifinals 6-4, 6-2. 

About Pan Pacific Open: 
The Pan Pacific Open is a WTA Tour affiliated professional tennis tournament for women, held every year since 1984 in Tokyo, Japan. It is classified on the WTA Tour as a Tier I tournament since 1993. 



Electing to bat first, the Indian blue posted a total of 274 for nine in their 50 overs before bowling out the strong Delhi batting line-up for 224 in 44.4 overs. 

Bhuvneshwar Kumar selected for Man-of-the match for his four wickets. Yuvraj singh captained the India Blue team, whereas Virat Kohli captained the Delhi team. The teams which are participated in the tournament are India Blue, India Red and Delhi. The 2012-13 edition of the tournament was won by India B Squad. 

About N.K.P. Salve Challenger Trophy: 

The NKP Salve Challenger Trophy, commonly referred to as the Challenger Trophy, is an Indian List A cricket tournament organized by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI). 

Established in the 1994–1995 season, it is played with the purpose of showcasing the talent that the country has, as well as providing opportunities for younger players to make an impression. 



Portuguese sensation Luis Leao Pinto emerged overall winners at the 9th MTB Himalaya 2013, which concluded in Shimla on 3 October 2013. The World No. 9 won the winner's trophy in the Open Men's Solo category. He clocked 17:33:21 while Purna Bahadur Pradhan (21:27:17) and Surendra Singh (21:42:16) finished second and third respectively.

Luis Leao Pinto clocked 25:46:02 to win the Masters Solo category while Van Belle Michael Mclean (27:43:22) and Luis Canto Moniz (29:14:46) were runners-up and second runners-up respectively. 

Laxmi Magar emerged winner in the Open Women's Solo category followed by Sowmya Urs (42:59:33) and Shital Vitthal Chavan (45:37:28) in the second and third respectively. Laxmi clocked 32:06:25. 




Kalapana Devi on 5 October 2013 won bronze medal at the Judo tournament in Tashkent, Uzbekistan. It was India’s first IJF Grand Prix medal. Competing in 52kg weight category, Kalpana defeated Zarifa Sultonova of Uzbekistan but lost to Gili Cohen of Israel. However, Kalpana jumped back to medal contention through repechage round, where she got the better of Brazilian Raquel Silva. 

Kalpana, who is with Indo-Tibetan Border Police, had also won a bronze medal in the Women's World Cup Judo Championships held in September 2010 in Uzbekistan. India has sent an eight-member team in the IJF Grand Prix Judo Championships, which will conclude on 7 October 2013. The judo players will remain in Tashkent for a one-month training post the tournament. 



Pakistan on 5 October 2013 defeated India in the final of the Under-19 Asian Rugby Championship 2013 in Lahore. Pakistan won the final match with the margin of 13-11 points. At the end of the first half, both teams' scores were on par at 8- 8. However, in the second half, Pakistani team played more confidently and aggressively and won five more points for them while Indians could get only three more points. 

Prior to this, Pakistan was qualified for the championship final after it beat Afghanistan by 44-6 while Indian team got by to qualify for the final after Uzbekistan failed to participate in the tournament due to some technical reasons. Suraj Veer Sharma was the captain of Indian team while Daud Gull was the captain of Pakistan team. A Pakistan rugby team will also visit India next week to feature in the Asian Sevens in which teams from 16 nations would participate. 



India’s lawn tennis player Rohan Bopanna with French partner Edouard Roger-Vasselin won the Rakuten Japan Open tennis championship (Men's Doubles) on 6 October 2013 in Tokyo. They won the cash prize of the 1297000 US dollars. 

The fourth seeded Indo-French pair emerged victorious with a 7-6 (5) 6-4 scoreline against the Briton-Australian pair of Jemie Murray and John Peers in one hour and 17 minutes.

Bopanna had won his first title of the 2013 season in February 2013 when he triumphed at ATP 250 event in Marseille, France paired with Colin Fleming of Britain. He had also reached the final of Rome Masters with compatriot Mahesh Bhupathi but lost in the final. Bopanna and his French partner had a really tough battle in the final match of Japan Open. 



Sania Mirza won the China Open tennis championship trophy (women’s Doubles) with Cara Black of Zimbabwe on 5 October 2013 in Beijing. They defeated Vera Dushevina of Russia and Arantxa Parra Santonja of Spain in straight sets 6-2, 6-2. The Indo-Zimbabwean pair was eighth seeded.

Sania and Cara had won Pan Pacific Open in Tokyo last week. It is fifth title of the season for Sania Mirza and 19th overall. Sania had won the New Haven event with Chinese Zheng before she teamed up with Cara. Early in the season, Sania Mirza won titles in Dubai and Brisbane with American partner Bethanie-Mattek Sands. 



Mumbai Indians clinched the Champions League Twenty-20 title by defeating Rajasthan Royals by 33 runs in New Delhi on 6 October 2013. Mumbai Indians set the target of 203 runs and defeated Rajasthan Royals at 169 runs in 18.5 overs. 

This was Mumbai Indians’ highest total in the Champions League Twenty20. Harbhajan Singh was adjudged Man of the Match by bagging 4 wickets and giving just 32 runs. 

Dwayne Smith, in the meanwhile, was declared Champion of the Series. It is also important to note that this was the last T-20 match of Sachin Tendulkar and Royals skipper Rahul Dravid after they both announced their retirement from T-20 format. This was the second Champions League Twenty-20 title for Mumbai Indians, the team which also won the IPL-6 season. 

About the Event- Champions League Twenty-20: 
• The Champions League Twenty20 is also called CLT20 and is the annual international Twenty20 cricket competition. 
• It is played among the top domestic teams from major cricketing nations. 
• The Champions League Twenty20 was launched in the year 2008. The first edition of this event was held in October 2009. 
• The CLT20 is owned jointly by the BCCI, Cricket Australia and Cricket South Africa. It is chaired by N. Srinivasan. 
• The tournament is always held between September and October in South Africa or India. 
• The total prize of the event is 6 million US dollar. The winning team gets 2.5 million US dollar, the amount which is the highest for any club cricket tournament in the history of this game. 



Novak Djokovic clinched his fourth China Open title in five years on 6 October 2013 against Rafael Nadal 6-3 6-4 in the final. The 26-year-old Djokovic clinched the title with the 3-0 lead in the first set and taking it forward to his victory. 

Novak Djokovic won the same tournament earlier in 2009, 2010 and 2012. He did not participate in 2011 tournament because of injury. 

About the China Open:
• The China Open was earlier known as the Beijing Salem Open. 
• It is the annual professional tennis tournament held in Beijing, China. 
• The first men's singles and doubles events took place in the year 1993. 
• In the year 1998, China Open was dropped from the ATP tour calendar. However, in the year 2004, it was reinstated in the ATP tournament. 
• In the year 2006, the China Open became the first tournament outside the US to make use of the Hawk-Eye system in match play. 
• Novak Djokovic is the only player who won the China Open tournament four times. 
• Michael Chang has the record of consecutive wins with three titles. In the doubles, the Bryan Brothers are the only doubles pair who won the title consecutively. 
• The winner of the China Open wins 557100 US Dollar as the prize money along with 500 ATP points. 



Top seeded Juan Martin Del Potro of Argentine defeated third seeded Milos Raonic of Canada, 7-6 (7-5) 7-5 to win the ATP Rakuten Japan Open Tennis Championships in Tokyo on 6 October 2013. 

This is the Del potro’s third ATP 500 Tournament of the year(2013). With this win Del Potro also received 312000 US Dollars prize money and earned 500 Emirates ATP Rankings points. 

Del Potro was a late addition to the tournament after Andy Murray withdrew due to a back injury. 

About the Japan Open: 

The Rakuten Japan Open Tennis Championships is the longest-running ATP World Tour tennis tournament in Asia, first held in 1972. 

The championship includes men's singles and doubles competitions. Until 2008 it was a joint tournament for both men and women, but since 2008 it hosted another women's tournament, Toray Pan Pacific Open. 



Indian cyclist Deborah on 7 October 2013 won a gold medal in the women’s junior individual sprint at Asian Cycling Confederation (ACC) Track Asia Cup in Thailand. 

Teen cyclist Deborah from Andaman Nicobar Island had earlier grabbed gold in 500m Time Trial event. Deborah and her compatriot Manorama Devi also attained two silver medals in Scratch and Point races. The bronze medal came in team Sprint. 

The Indian team showed their best-ever performance in an international cycling competition - winning two gold, three silver and a bronze - in the three-day long event. 

List of the Winners: 
1.Deborah-Gold- Junior individual sprint 
2.Deborah-Gold-500m Time Trial 
3.V G Parvathy and Rutuja bronze in Team Sprint (Senior women's category) 4.Deborah and Manorama Devi- Two silver medals in Scratch and Point race 5.Dilawar Singh silver- Junior men category 
6.Bronze medal in team Sprint.



Indian women pair of Vidya Pillai and Arantxa Sanchis won the gold for team title in the 2013 IBSF World 6-red Snooker Championship after defeating Hong Kong in the final at Carlow, Ireland on 6 October 2013.

India also clinched two bronze through Chitra Magimairajan and Varshaa Sanjeev in the women's team event as well as Shivam Arora in the men's individual event. Vidya Pillai and Arantxa Sanchis defeated two-time IBSF champion Ng On Yee and So Man You of Hong Kong 3-2 (23-74, 68-41, 51-46, 4-64, 55-36) in the final to clinch the gold. The Indian women pair earlier defeated England 2-1 in the semifinals. 

Chitra Magimairajan and Varshaa Sanjeev in the meanwhile, lost to Ng On Yee and So Man You of Hong Kong in the semifinals and secured bronze. In men's individual event, Shivam Arora lost to Duane Jones of Wales 5-2 in the semifinals and secured bronze. 



Buckingham Palace held its first official football match to mark FA's (Football Association’s) 150th anniversary on 7 October 2013. The match was played between Civil Service FC, the only surviving one of the eleven clubs that met to found The FA in 1863, and Polytechnic FC, which was formed in 1875. 

According to the FA, the nationwide network consists of more than 400000 individuals, including everyone from the players' parents, coaches, referees and administrators that help provide the opportunity for people to enjoy football. 

The Football Association is also known simply as the FA. It is the governing body of football in England. It is the oldest football association in the world and is responsible for overseeing all aspects of the amateur and professional game in England. It was formed in 1863. 



The Indian tennis pair Sanam Singh and Vijayant Malik on 12 October 2013 won the doubles title in the 15000 US dollars ITF Men's Futures Tennis Tournament at the Jake Hess Tennis Stadium in Houston, USA. In the final match, they defeated fourth seeded pair of Evan King (USA) and Costin Paval (Romania) in two sets 7-6 (5), 6-4. 

Earlier, second seeded Sanam Singh of India lost to Tyler Hochwalt (USA) in the singles quarter-final match. Sanam played well in the first set before going down in tie-breaker at 7-6 (3).However, the Indian player submitted meekly in the second set without winning even a single game (6-0). 

What is ITF? 

The International Tennis Federation (ITF) is the governing body of world tennis, made up of 210 national tennis associations or corresponding organizations of independent countries or territories. 

In 1977 it dropped the word 'lawn' from its title, recognising that most tennis was no longer played on grass. It was established as the International Lawn Tennis Federation (ILTF) by 12 national associations meeting at a conference in Paris, France on 1 March 1913. 



Indian Wrestler Satyavrat on 12 October 2013 won the 9th Roustam-E-International Indian Style wrestling title at Vivekanand Sports Stadium, Katra after he defeated wrestler Mykhalio Datsemko of Ukrain in the final bout. Wrestler Satyavart was awarded Silver Gurj, Patta and cash prize of one lakh rupees and the runner up got cash of 50000 rupees. 

The wrestling championship was organised as a part of Navratra Festival by the J&K Indian Style Wrestling Association with the active support of Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine Board (SMVDSB), J&K Tourism Department, Jammu and Kashmir Police, Katra Municipal Committee, Navratra Festival Committee District Administration and locals of Katra. World Champion and Olympic Silver Medalist, Wrestler Sushil Kumar was the chief guest on the occasion. 

J&K Indian Style Wrestling Association also organized 1st Jammu & Kashmir Kesari tile -2013 on the occasion. Bhadur Khan of Jammu won the Kesari title by defeating wrestler Ajay Sharma of Udhampur. Cash award of 20000 rupees was given to the winner of the first Jammu & Kashmir Kesari tile -2013. 


Defence

The 32nd Annual Coast Guard Commanders Conference was inaugurated on 3 October 2013 by the Defence Secretary Radha Krishna Mathur. It is the three day conference which is aimed at assisting the Coast Guard Commanders in introspection of the myriad challenges confronting the service in the Maritime domain. 

On the occasion, the Director General Indian Coast Guard Vice Admiral AG Thapliyal highlighted the progress made by the service across the entire spectrum of activities and also thanked the MoD for all the valuable support and guidance. At the conference, apart from the Coast Guard Commanders, senior officials of Ministry of Defence such as Financial Advisor (Defence Services) Arunava Dutt were also present. 



India on 7 October 2013 successfully test-fired it’s indigenously developed nuclear-capable Prithvi-II missile with a strike range of 350 km from Chandipur Integrated test range in Odisha. The surface-to-surface missile was test fired from a mobile launcher. The last user trial of Prithvi-II was successfully carried out from the same base on 12 August 2013.

Prithvi-II Missile Specifications:
• Inducted into India's Strategic Forces Command in 2003, the Prithvi II missile is the first missile to be developed by DRDO under India's Integrated Guided Missile Development Program. 
• It is capable of carrying 500 kg to 1000 kg of warheads and thrusted by liquid propulsion twine engines, uses advanced inertial guidance system with manoeuvring trajectory. 
• The Prithvi-II missile is equipped with advanced high accuracy navigation system and guided by an innovative guidance scheme. 
• The improved Circular Error Probability (CEP) achieved by the missile is a testimony to specify the efficacy of this missile system. 
• Prithvi uses an advanced inertial guidance system with manoeuvring capabilities and comes within metres of its target. 


Science & Technology

The Geological Survey of India (GSI) on 4 October 2013 acquired a ship named Samudra Ratnakar for around 600 crore Rupees for the purpose of undertaking deep-sea surveys as well as exploration of the minerals lying in the depths of oceans. 
Features of Samudra Ratnakar: 
• Samudra Ratnakar was delivered in the month of September 2013 by the Hyundai Heavy Industries, South Korea. 
• It is furnished with latest technological instruments. 
• The Geological Survey of India has the plans of keeping around 50 scientists on board Samudra Ratnakar for the collection of data from the deep sea. 
• With Samudra Ratnakar’s induction, the Geological Survey of India for the first time entered into an endeavour to explore deep-sea waters for survey. 
• Samudra Ratnakar has the capacity of 2700 DWT. 
• It can sail at a stretch for around 45 days and will be docked at the Chennai port.

The GSI also entered into an agreement with Shipping Corporation of India for the management, operations as well as maintenance of Samudra Ratnakar. 

At present, Samudra Ratnakar is docked at Kandla port and will be dedicated to the nation by Mines Minister Dinsha Patel in the third week of October 2013. It is important to note that as of now, the GSI has already surveyed over 95 percent of 2012 million sq km Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ), including around 105000 sq km of territorial waters (TW) of India. 

These surveys were conducted in the northern part of Indian Ocean, coastal waters of Arabian Sea, Andaman-Nicobar and Bay of Bengal through the fleet of three ships and vessels namely R V Samudra Manthan, R V Samudra Kaustubh and R V Samudra Shaudhikama. The Geological Survey of India also included more than 700 cruises for the collection of data on the coastal waters of India. 
It also maintains its dedicated multidisciplinary marine wing with the offices in Bhubaneswar, Kolkata, Gandhinagar, Mangalore, Chennai, Vishakhapatnam and Cochin. 


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