31 December 2014

Judicial Appointments Commission Bill gets President’s nod

The new law facilitates setting up of a commission for appointment of judges, replacing the 20-year-old collegium system

The Constitutional amendment Bill that seeks to scrap the collegium system of appointing judges to higher judiciary has received Presidential nod. The National Judicial Appointments Commission (NJAC) Bill passed by the Parliament in August this year has received President’s assent, official sources said.
The new law facilitates the setting up of a commission for appointment of judges, replacing the 20-year-old collegium system, which has been under severe criticism.
It paves the way for the setting up of NJAC, which will appoint and transfer judges to the Supreme Courts and the 24 High Courts. The Bill, 124th amendment to the Constitution, grants Constitutional status to the NJAC and its composition which will be headed by the Chief Justice of India.
As many as 16 of the 29 states have ratified the Bill. Besides the CJI, the judiciary would be represented by two senior judges of the Supreme Court. Two eminent personalities and the Law Minister will be the other members of the body.

NASA instrument to measure soil moisture on Earth

NASA is launching a new remote sensing instrument in space that will measure the moisture lodged in Earth’s soils with unprecedented accuracy and resolution.
The Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) instrument scheduled for launch on January 29, 2015, has three main parts — a radar, a radiometer and the largest rotating mesh antenna ever deployed in space.
Remote sensing instruments are called “active” when they emit their own signals and “passive” when they record signals that already exist.
The mission’s science instrument ropes together a sensor of each type to corral the highest-resolution, most accurate measurements ever made of soil moisture — a tiny fraction of Earth’s water that has a disproportionately large effect on weather and agriculture.
To enable the mission to meet its accuracy needs while covering the globe every three days or less, SMAP engineers at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, designed and built the largest rotating antenna that could be stowed into a space of only one foot by four feet for launch.
The dish is 19.7 feet in diameter.
“We call it the spinning lasso,” said Wendy Edelstein of JPL, the SMAP instrument manager.
The antenna is attached on one side to an arm with a crook in its elbow. It spins around the arm at about 14 revolutions per minute (one complete rotation every four seconds).
Although the antenna must fit during launch into a space not much bigger than a tall kitchen trash can, it must unfold so precisely that the surface shape of the mesh is accurate within about an eighth of an inch.
The mesh dish is edged with a ring of lightweight graphite supports that stretch apart like a baby gate when a single cable is pulled, drawing the mesh outward.
“Making sure we don’t have snags, that the mesh doesn’t hang up on the supports and tear when it’s deploying — all of that requires very careful engineering. We have a very stable and robust system now,” the SMAP instrument manager said.
SMAP’s radar uses the antenna to transmit microwaves towards Earth and receive the signals that bounce back, called backscatter.
The microwaves penetrate a few inches or more into the soil before they rebound. Changes in the electrical properties of the returning microwaves indicate changes in soil moisture, and also tell whether or not the soil is frozen.
Using a complex technique called synthetic aperture radar processing, the radar can produce ultra-sharp images with a resolution of about one to three kilometres.
The SMAP will be the fifth NASA Earth science mission launched within the last 12 months

Hamara Jal – Hamara Jeewan

Hamara Jal – Hamara Jeewan to be Observed in Every District of Country

Uma Bharti Holds Video Conference with the State Representatives
Hamara Jal – Hamara Jeewan initiative will be observed in every district of the country during India Water Week- 2015 (January 13 to 17, 2015). This was announced by Union Minister for Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvention Sushri Uma Bharti during video conference with the principal secretaries of water resources /irrigation of various States here today. She said this will be an initiative to engage scientists, engineers, water communities, PRIs, other stakeholders and NGOs to address the issues of water resources planning at the local level and to generate awareness regarding need for water conservation. Sushri Bharti said one day workshop will be organized in every district to find indigenous solution for meeting the water related demands and suggest future road map to manage water for growth. The Minister said, “Each district, as an administrative unit is proposed to be targeted for organizing the event which will be a part of the Central Sector IEC scheme for highlighting the importance and generating awareness about water conservation”. The Minister said participation from school students will be an integral part of the programme for sensitizing the next generation for water conservation. This will also spread awareness regarding need to conserve water in the light of growing water scarcity.

During the workshop it is planned to prepare a profile of each district covering its source of water, utilization for various uses and constraint, possible local solutions for meeting the unsatisfied demands and future roadmap to manage water for growth. The States have been asked to submit a report in this regard after the workshop is over. The recommendations received during the deliberations of the workshop will also be used for preparation of an overview of State level recommendations. Such recommendations would enable Ministry to utilize the same for policy making.

States water resources department will be overall in charge of implementing the programme. For organizing the event in each State, committees will be constituted at two levels. The State level organizing committee will be constituted under the chairmanship of Principal Secretary, Water Resources Department or Engineer-in-Chief of the Water Resources Department wherein representatives at the level of Superintending Engineer / Director from the field organizations of Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation like CWC, CGWB, NWDA etc. will be nominated as Member Secretaries to the Committee. The state level organizing committee will be responsible for overall organization of the events in the respective districts of the State.

For organizing the event in each district, District level committee to be headed by Collector/DC/DM of the district will be constituted and other members of the committee may include subordinate officers of the districts like BDOs, municipal authorities (in case of urban/semi urban districts). Representatives from NGOs / WALMIS working in the districts may also be included as members of the District level organizing committee.

An amount of Rs. 50,000 has been earmarked for organizing the event in each district by the Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation. The amount will be released to the nodal officers identified for the state. The amount will be spent by the representative of nodal officer or the district level committee which will be subsequently reimbursed by the nodal officer. State Water Resources Department have also been requested to mobilize additional funds available with them under their respective schemes

Year End Review for the Department of Higher Education, Ministry of Human Resource Development


·        Passing of the Indian Institutes of Information Technology Bill, the School of Planning and Architecture Bill that makes these institutions of national importance with powers to award degrees.
·        Amendment to the Central University Bill paving the way for a Central University named after Mahatma Gandhi at Motihariin Bihar.
·        Launch of the Credit framework for Skills and Education as per the National Skills Qualification framework paving the way for certification of skills through the formal system and allowing for multiple exits and entrance into the education system with scope for vertical and lateral mobility.
·        Launch of the Know Your College portal to provide informed decision making opportunity for students along with complete availability of all e-learning resources.
·        Launch of UnnatBharat Abhiyan connecting higher education and society to enable technology and its use for development of rural areas.
·        Launch of Global Initiative for Academics Network (GIAN), an initiative to attract the best foreignacademics to Indian Universities of Excellence. 
·        Approval by UGC of the Guidelines for Choice Based Credit Framework, providing for more choices for students to opt for employable courses through a system of flexible credits for foundational, elective and core courses.
·        Systematic work on finalizing a ranking and accreditation framework that can be adapted to the Indian system.
·        National Consultation Workshop on Skills in Higher Education to assess the success of Community Colleges and Bachelor of Vocational StudiesProgrammes to make them better.
·        Launch of the PanditMadan Mohan MalaviyaMission on Teachers and Teaching on 25th December, 2014.

Rafale in storm clouds, Parrikar says IAF can make do with Sukhoi-30s

For the first time since January 31, 2012, when the Frenchfighter was chosen as the future medium multi-role combat aircraft (MMRCA) for the Indian Air Force (IAF), a top Indian official has admitted serious problems in negotiating the purchase with French vendor, Dassault.

Speaking to the media on Tuesday evening, Defence Ministersaid there were “complications” in the negotiations that have already dragged on for almost three years, with the French side reluctant to meet commitments that the had specified in the tender.

Parrikar did not reveal details. Business Standard has reported earlier on Dassault’s unwillingness to assume responsibility for the production of Rafales by Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd, which the tender mandated. is to build 108 Rafales in India with technology transferred from Dassault and its sub-vendors.

Ominously for Dassault, Parrikar said that additional Sukhoi-30MKI fighters, which HAL builds in Nashik, were adequate for the IAF in case it was decided not to procure the Rafale.

The IAF currently plans to have 272 Su-30MKI fighters by about 2018. HAL’s Nashik production line is building the fighter at Rs 358 crore each, less than half the estimated cost of buying the Rafale.

“The Su-30MKI is an adequate aircraft for meeting the air force’s needs”, said Parrikar.

Earlier this month, Parrikar had assured his French counterpart, Jean-Yves Le Drian, during the latter’s visit to New Delhi on December 1, that Rafale negotiations would be placed on a “fast track”, according to MoD officials.

The defence minister revealed on Tuesday that the French defence minister “has (committed) to send an empowered person to negotiate after New Year.”

According to the terms of the MMRCA tender, 18 of the 126 fighters being bought would be supplied fully built abroad, with the remaining 108 manufactured by HAL. The cost of the project, originally sanctioned at Rs 42,000 crore, has now crossed Rs 100,000 crore, according to expert estimates.

Border infrastructure

Signalling a major thrust on building roads along the 4,057-kilometre Line of Actual Control (LAC) between India and China, the defence minister announced that the Border Roads Organisation (BRO), which has been plagued by infighting between its civil and military personnel, would come directly under the MoD.

“BRO is being delinked from the Ministry of Surface Transport. It will be entirely defence controlled and defence financed. We are (also) considering transferring of more than 6,000-7,000 kilometres of roads, which are not in sensitive areas, to the National Highways (Authority of India)”, said Parrikar.

Weighing in against the principle of “dual command”, the defence minister said: “Ministry of Surface Transport was their (BRO’s) administrative department and defence was their [operational department]. So obviously there was confusion, when you have two masters, you don’t get work output.”

Parrikar confirmed that the proposal had been discussed with Minister for Surface Transport, Nitin Gadkari, and both had agreed that, from the next budget onwards, BRO would come under the MoD.

The BRO was charged with building 61 Indo-China Border Roads (ICBRs), of total length 3410 kilometres, by 2012.  Of these, it has completed only 17 roads, of length 590 kilometres, the defence minister told parliament on December 12.

Parrikar explained that high technology, especially the practice of tunnelling with rock boring machines, was essential for building roads in difficult terrain, for which the private sector needed to be involved. “The way it is being cut today, I don’t think we will complete (our target) even in 15 years. If the target is 5 years, we will have to use technology”, he said.

The defence minister also revealed that he was working with the railways minister, Suresh Prabhu, to expand rail connectivity across Arunachal Pradesh. “We have decided to improve the railway connectivity as well as the road connectivity. We will finalise things in the days ahead”, he said.

The defence minister told parliament on December 12 that four strategic railway lines have been prioritised for survey.

Arms agents permitted

Parrikar reiterated his intention to permit foreign arms companies to station “representatives or technical consultants” in India, reversing a ban on “agents” that had been imposed after the Bofors gun scandal of 1987-88. This had been reported earlier by Business Standard (December 13, “Parrikar likely to allow arms agents, impose steep fines for wrongdoing”).

The defence minister downplayed reports of increased Pakistani firing on the Line of Control (LoC), stating, “Across the LoC, (firing) incidents have reduced during 2014. There were increasing incidents on the International Border, but they have also fallen during the last two months compared to this time last year.”

Even so, Parrikar emphasised the army’s muscular posture, saying his orders were”“Don’t hesitate; react appropriately and without holding yourself back. We don’t (start firing). But if there is something going on from the other side we retaliate with double the energy.”

Parrikar said that additional Sukhoi-30MKI fighters, which HAL builds in Nashik, were adequate for the IAF in case it was decided not to procure the Rafale

Nationwide Monitoring of use of Toilets will be launched from January, 2015

Yearender, 2014-15                   

The Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation will launch a Nationwide Real Time Monitoring of use of toilets from January 2015. The Monitoring System will be unveiled to give a big push to Swachh Bharat Mission, which aims at attaining a 100% Open Defecation Free India by 2019. People across the country will be mobilized to check and verify the use of toilets in the rural areas through Mobile Phones, Tablets or I-Pads and upload the same in case of any discrepancy on the Ministry’s Website in tune with online Citizen Monitoring. Earlier, the monitoring was done only about the construction of toilets, but now the actual use of toilets will be ascertained on a sustained basis.
Moreover, in order to implement the Swachh Bharat Mission in a mission mode, the Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation is being strengthened. Around 2 dozen additional staff including two Joint Secretaries, 4 Directors and their subordinate staff will soon be appointed for effective implementation and monitoring of Swachh Bharat goals. An Expert Committee will also be set up to examine the Innovative Technologies for toilets and solid and liquid waste management. A National Telephonic helpline will also be installed for Rural Water Supply and Sanitation. 
 Recent initiatives:-
•      Provision of entering progress under the Swachh Bharat Mission (Gramin) with names of Individual beneficiaries; Photos of Toilets constructed  and Coordinates of the toilets to be uploaded
•      Key Resource Centres identified for carrying out training on Sanitation
•      Media Campaign at National & State level
•      States starting large IPC Campaign at GP level
•      Conjoint approach to Water and Sanitation has been adopted in planning
•      Focus on Menstrual Hygiene Management
•      Evaluation by National Level Monitors of Ministry of Rural Development/ Drinking Water and Sanitation carried out in 57 Districts in 2014
•      Independent 3rd. Party National Evaluation of NBA has been started
•      Concurrent Monitoring with Mobiles with support of WSP
•      Bottleneck Analysis Tool (BAT) with support of UNICEF 

Text Box: Sanitation includes… 
• Safe disposal of human and animal excreta
• Safe storage and handling of drinking water
• Personal hygiene(including menstrual hygiene)
• Cleanliness of the house
• Food hygiene
• Safe disposal of waste water
• Safe disposal of solid waste; and 
• Community hygiene

 The main objectives of the Swachh Bharat Mission (Gramin) are as under:-
·         Bring about an improvement in the general quality of life in the rural areas.
·         Accelerate sanitation coverage in rural areas to achieve the vision of Swachh Bharat by 2019 with all Gram Panchayats in the country attaining Nirmal status.
·         Motivate communities and Panchayati Raj Institutions promoting sustainable sanitation facilities through awareness creation and health education.
·         Encourage cost effective and appropriate technologies for ecologically safe and sustainable sanitation.
·         Develop community managed environmental sanitation systems focusing on solid & liquid waste management for overall cleanliness in the rural areas.


The major components of the SBM (Gramin) are:- 
·         A provision of incentives for the construction of Individual household latrine (IHHL) of Rs.12000, including central share of Rs.9000.00 (Rs. 10800.00 in case of special category states) and State share of Rs. 3000.00 (Rs. 1200.00 in case of special category states)   to all BPL households and to identified Above Poverty Line (APL) households(all SCs /STs, small and marginal farmers, landless labourers with homestead, physically handicapped and women-headed households).
·         Construction of Community Sanitary Complexes(Upto 2 lakh per Community Sanitary Complex). Sharing pattern will be 60:30:10 (Centre: State: Community)
·         Assistance(Upto 50 lakh per district) to Production Centres of sanitary materials and Rural Sanitary Marts.
·         Fund for Solid and Liquid Waste Management. A cap of Rs. 7/12/15/20 lakh to be applicable for Gram Panchayats having upto 150/300/500 more than 500 households on a Centre and State /GP sharing ratio of 75:25.
·         Provision for IEC will be at 8% of total Project cost, with 3% to be utilised at the Central level and 5 % at State level
Provision for Administrative Cost will be 2% of the Project cost. Sharing pattern will be 75:25 between Centre and State.

  Strategy :-
  • Sanitation is Mindset issue. Create demand by Triggering ‘Behaviour change’ by intensifying IEC campaign and Inter Personal Communication (IPC).
  • This IEC/IPC programme will be assisted by Multilateral Agencies like UNICEF, World Bank`s WSP etc, national NGOs working on sanitation and groups like Rotary, Nehru Yuva Kendra , CLTS Foundation etc.
  • Outputs (Construction) and Outcomes (Usage which will lead to better health) will be monitored.
  • Mechanism of ‘Trigger’ plus Incentives to construct quality toilets will be used.
  • Strong Administrative structure required for the Mission at Central, State and district level. Foot soldiers required at GP level.
  • Monitor   Outcomes (Toilet usage) in consultation with Min. of Health. Monitor Outputs in terms of Expenditure and toilets constructed.
  • Use of Technology to Monitor Household coverage through a   Hand held device to capture photos of beneficiary, toilet and Lat/Long. coordinates. – Pilot done.
  • Innovative, Low cost and User friendly technologies for toilet and Solid and Liquid Waste Management to be pursued.
  • States, which performs well in their IEC campaign, behavioural change and toilet construction effort under the Swachh Bharat Mission to be incentivised. Gram Panchayats performing well under the Mission will be incentivised with funds for Waste Water Management.
  • Launching the Swachh Bharat Award –for Individuals; Institutions; GPs, Districts; States who do exceptional work.
Text Box: Poor sanitation leads to :
• Various communicable diseases
• Stunted growth of children
• Higher infant mortality
• Under five Mortality Rate (U5MR)(Children dying before completing the age of five years)
• Reduced resistance and immunity in children


 The Total Sanitation Campaign (TSC) under the restructured CRSP was launched with effect from 1.4.1999 following a ‘community led’ and ‘people centered’ approach. TSC moved away from the principle of state-wise allocation to a “demand-driven” approach. The programme lays emphasis on Information, Education and Communication (IEC) for generation of effective demand for sanitation facilities. It also lays emphasis on school sanitation and hygiene education for bringing about attitudinal and behavioral changes for adoption of hygienic practices from an early age. 

To encourage the Panchayati Raj Institutions to take up sanitation promotion, the incentive award scheme of Nirmal Gram Puraskar (NGP) was launched in 2005. The award is given to those PRIs which attain 100% open defecation free environment. This award publicized the sanitation programme significantly all across the country.
Encouraged with initial success of NGP, and looking into the need to upscale the sanitation interventions, the TSC was revamped as the Nirmal Bharat Abhiyan, (NBA) in 2012, with the objective to accelerate the sanitation coverage in the rural areas so as to comprehensively cover the rural community through renewed strategies and saturation approach and to transform rural India into Nirmal Bharat.
While the programme has been successful to some extent, the fact that there are still a large number of rural households without access to safe sanitation facilities, which is a issue which needs to be tackled on war footing in a time bound manner, the Swachh Bharat Mission (Gramin) has been launched on 2nd October, 2014, which aims at attaining a 100% Open Defecation Free India by 2019.

Sanitation Coverage:-
http://pib.nic.in/archieve/others/2014/dec/images/img2014123104.gifCensus 2011 has reported that sanitation coverage in rural India has reached 32.70% taking into consideration the increased population.
Census 2011 has also reported an increase in 2.96 crore households in rural areas as compared to census 2001.
The NSSO-2012 report has estimated that 40.6% of rural households have sanitation facilities. As per Baseline Survey Report 2013, 40.35% households have toilet. State-wise Status is as under :-

2.2   Physical achievements made during last 2 years and current year
(a) Individual household latrine (IHHLs)
Achievements made  in construction of Individual household latrine (IHHLs) under SBM (Gramin) during last two years and current year is as under:
After launch of Swachh Bharat Mission (Gramin) on 2nd October, 2014, 503142 Individual household latrines have been constructed.

(b) School toilets
Achievements made in construction of School toilet units under SBM (Gramin) during last two years and current year is as under:
(c) Anganwadi toilets
Achievements made in construction of Anganwadi toilet units under SBM (Gramin) during last two years and current year is as under:
 Financial progress during the last two years and current year (Rs. in crore)

The Allocation and Utilisation during the last 2 years and current is as under Swachh Bharat Mission (Gramin) :http://pib.nic.in/archieve/others/2014/dec/images/img2014123109.gif

 Nirmal Gram Puraskar

To encourage the Panchayati Raj Institutions to take up sanitation promotion, the incentive award scheme of Nirmal Gram Puraskar (NGP) has been launched. The award is given to those PRIs which attain 100% open defecation free environment. Under NGP, a total of 28589 Gram panchayats181 Intermediate panchayats and 13 District panchayats have received the award till date. State-wise number of NGP awarded Gram Panchayat is shown in the graph below :-


Swachh Bharat Award is proposed to be launched for Individuals; Institutions; GPs, Districts; States who do exceptional work

Happy new year to all my well wishers !!!,samveg ias

make it memorable year in your life,remember your own resolution to succeed is more important than any other.

Land Acquisition Act: Right step, wrong route

After a failed winter session of Parliament, the government recommended promulgating an ordinance for changes to the Right to Fair and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013. Justifying the use of ordinance, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said the government had to amend the Act before the end of the year since Section 105 of the Act, which provides for exempting 13 other central laws, would otherwise have to be notified by December 31.

The 13 pieces of legislation include the Land Acquisition (Mines) Act 1885, Atomic Energy Act, 1962, Railway Act 1989, National Highways Act 1956 and Metro Railways (Construction of Works) Act, 1978. A key change in the ordinance is that the higher compensation and rehabilitation and resettlement package would also apply to the 13 exempted legislations.

“With regard to the process of land acquisition, the priority of the government was that the interest of farmer whose land is to be acquired is paramount,” Jaitley said. Currently, the Act also contains an urgency clause — related to natural disasters and wars — where the acquisition of land is exempted from the stringent requirements in the legislation.

The opposition Congress party has criticized the development and has reached out to all other political parties asking them to come together to block the ‘anti-farmer’ amendments. Congress party general secretary Digvijay Singh said that his party would oppose every move to dilute the Land Acquisition Act.

And while politicians quibble, analysts are upbeat about the government’ move. Commenting on the ordinance, Religare said in a report that the ordinance highlights the government’s intent of bringing in major reforms for the infrastructure/ manufacturing sector. The same would go help the government in executing several of its marquee projects like – 100 smart cities, DFC and DMIC amongst others.

The changes in the ordinance have been made after taking inputs from states suggesting changes to the Act which would make it more industry-friendly. Changes included in the Act include doing away with the consent clause for public private participation (PPP) projects, removing the requirement for mandatory social impact assessment (SIA) study and relaxing the retrospective clause. Experts say that holding a social impact study involving public hearings - procedures that industry executives say would have dragged the acquisition process for years.

One of the key reasons for low rate of investments was the which was introduced by the previous government in January 2014 which not only made the process of acquiring land costly but also tedious. The ordinance will act in ironing out procedural difficulties in land acquisition needed for defence and infrastructural projects.

Goldman Sachs sees this development as positive for India’s overall as key projects related to rural infra, electrification, industrial corridors and PPP projects being exempted will result in faster land acquisition and help move along projects that have been stuck for want of land.

The ordinance, however, is unlikely to solve the problems of the manufacturing sector. According to Goldman Sachs, the ordinance will only bring in partial relief as manufacturing sector/industry will still have to go through the process of SIA and obtain mandatory consent and administrative burden related to rehabilitation and resettlement which would continue to impact both infrastructure and industrial projects. Furthermore, the ordinance now includes the earlier exempted 13 acts.

Higher cost of land acquisition is not so much of a negative as long as land acquisition becomes swifter says the Goldman Sachs report. Direct cost related to land acquisition will rise as a result; however, faster land acquisition would result in indirect cost savings for infrastructure projects.

Though the intentions of the government are right the mode selected to implement them are questionable. Unable to solve the parliament logjam adopting the ordinance route is not a healthy sign for the democracy. HSBC Securities in their note point out that "While ordinances can be reissued once they lapse, they may not be perceived as a stable solution by investors wanting secure property rights." It was the stability in policies through a new government which attracted global investors to India in the first place.

2014-An Year of Events for Ministry of Heavy Industries & Public Enterprises

Year End Review 2014
M/o of Heavy Industries & Public Enterprises 

Ministry of Heavy Industries & Public Enterprises has taken a number of initiatives during 2014 in its endeavour to create a working atmosphere for the industrial arena:


A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed on 29th January, 2014 between BHEL, SECL, SSL, POWERGRID, SJVN AND REIL for establishing a 4,000 MW Ultra Mega Solar Power Project (UMSPP)  in Jaipur, close to Sambhar Lake near Rajasthan. It was signed in the presence of Shri Praful Patel and Dr. Farookh Abdullah the then Ministers for Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises and Ministry  of New and Renewable Energy respectively and other dignitaries. Shri B. Prasada Rao, CMD, BHEL; Shri Rajendra Nimde, MD, SECI; Shri R.K. Tandon, CMD, SSL; Shri R.N. Nayak, CMD, Powergrid; Shri R.P. Singh, CMD, SJVN and Shri A.K. Jain, CMD, REIL, signed the MoU. 

The plant will be set up in two phases over a period of 7 years with Phase-I comprising 1,000 MW and the balance 3,000 MW in subsequent phases. The JVC will be incorporated as a public limited company under DHI and will have at its registered office in Delhi/NCR.  Significantly, with the commissioning of this plant and commercial utilisation of the harvested energy therein, this would become the largest single location solar electricity generation project in the world. 

The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs on 28th February, 2014 approved support of approximately Rs. 75 crore per annum on actual basis to Cachar Paper Mill (CPM), a unit of Hindustan Paper Corporation Limited (HPC) located in Panchgram, Hailakandi District, Assam as grant. This shall be to the extent of 90 percent of the transportation cost for meeting operational costs till such time that the gauge conversion of the Lumding-Silchar railway line is completed. 

The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) on 28th February, 2014 approved financial assistance and other measures for HMT Machine Tools Limited (HMT MTL).    The total financial implication of the proposal in the form of non-plan loan was estimated be Rs. 136.04 crore.  An increase in turnover will bring back business of the company towards a positive growth.   Implementation of 1997 pay scale and increase in the retirement age would motivate the workforce. The company is expected to turnaround with the proposed infusion of funds at its head office in Bangalore and its manufacturing units located at Bangalore (Karnataka), Pinjore (Haryana), Kalamassery (Kerala), Hyderabad (Andhra Pradesh) and Ajmer (Rajasthan).


The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs on 28th February, 2014 approved the proposal for providing non-plan budgetary support of Rs. 181.54 crore for VRS at 2007 notional pay scales as one time relaxation of DPE Guidelines for all employees of Hindustan Photo Films Mfg. Co. Ltd. (HPF), Udhagamandalam (Tamil Nadu). This is a Central Public Sector Enterprise [CPSE] under the Department of Heavy Industry [DHI], Ministry of Heavy Industries & Public Enterprises (HI&PE).  Employees of the company are in the 1987 pay scale. With the increased cost of living, it is very difficult for them to survive and meet their immediate financial obligations. With this decision employees will come out of their current financial crises. The enhanced VRS will also help HPF employees in their post retirement rehabilitation. 


The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) on 20th February, 2014 approved budgetary support, in the form of Non-Plan loan of Rs.27.06 crore for payment of salary/wages and statutory dues to the employees of HMT Limited for the period from March, 2013 to September, 2013. The CCEA also approved Rs.50.34 crore to HMT Machine Tools Limited for payment of statutory dues (Provident Fund, Gratuity etc.) for the period from September, 2012 to March, 2013. HMT Limited and HMT Machine Tools Limited, a subsidiary of HMT Limited, are Central Public Sector Enterprises under the administrative control of the Department of Heavy Industry.


The Union Cabinet 12th February, 2014  gave its approval for setting up of Jagdishpur Paper Mills Limited (JPML), a green field pulp and paper project at Jagdishpur, District Amethi, Uttar Pradesh at a cost of Rs. 3650 crore. The project will be implemented in two phases.

Jagsihpur Paper Mill Limited will venture into production of coated/uncoated printing and writing paper. It will reduce the gap between production and import of writing and printing paper as well as act as a check on prices. Apart from direct employment to 900 persons, indirect employment will also be generated which will spur gainful economic activities in the vicinity. 


Shri Anant Gangaram Geete assumed the charge of Ministry of Heavy Industries & Public Enterprises here on 28thMay 2014. On his arrival at Udyog Bhawan the Minister was received by Shri Sutanu Behuria, Secretary of the Ministry and other senior officials. 

Born on June 02, 1951 in Mumbai Shri Geete is an agriculturist and social worker by profession. Elected to the present Lok Sabha for the sixth consecutive term Shri Geete was Union Minister of State for Finance and Cabinet Minister for Power during 2002- 2004. He has visited Russia, UK, USA, UAE, France and Egypt. 


Shri P Radhakrishnan assumed the charge of Ministry of Heavy Industries & Public Enterprises here on 28th May 2014. On his arrival at Udyog Bhawan the Minister was received by Shri Sutanu Behuria, Secretary of the Ministry and other senior officials. 

Born on March 01, 1952 in District Kanyakumari (Tamilnadu) Shri Radhakrishnan has done BA, BL and is a lawyer by profession. Shri Radhakrishnan was first elected to 13th Lok Sabha in 1999 and held the portfolios of Union MoS for Youth Affairs & Sports, Urban Development and Poverty Elevation and Road Transport and Highways. 


Shri Kapil Dev Tripathi an IAS officer of 1980 batch of the Assam Meghalaya cadre took charge as the Secretary, Department of Public Enterprises, Ministry of Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises on 30th September, 2014. 

Shri Tripathi held various posts in Central Government as well as State Government. Before taking his present charge he was Secretary, Central Vigilance Commission, Department of Personnel and Training, Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions. 


The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs, chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, on 15th September, 2014 approved the "Scheme for Enhancement of Competitiveness of the Capital Goods Sector" to boost the Indian economy. This scheme, on its implementation, would attempt to make the Indian capital goods sector globally competitive. The sub sectors of Capital Goods covered under the scheme are mainly for Machine Tools, Textile Machinery, Construction and Mining Machinery, and Process Plant Machinery. The proposed scheme addresses the issue of technological depth creation in the capital goods sector, besides creating common industrial facility centres. 

The Scheme on Enhancement of Competitiveness in the Indian Capital Goods Sector will be implemented in the 12th Plan period and spill over to the 13th Plan period with an estimated outlay of Rs. 930.96 crore. The Gross Budgetary Support (GBS) from the government for the scheme would be Rs. 581.22 crore and the balance Rs. 349.74 crore would be contributed by the stakeholder industries. 

The scheme has five components to achieve the desired result in pilot mode - 
(i) Creation of "Advanced Centres of Excellence" for R & D and Technology Development with National Centres of Excellence in Education and Technology such as the Indian Institute of Technology Delhi, the Indian Institute of Technology Bombay, the Indian Institute of Technology Madras, the Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur and the Central Manufacturing Technology Institute (CMTI), Bangalore. 

(ii) Establishment of "Integrated Industrial Infrastructure Facilities" popularly known as Machine Tool Parks with a basic objective of making the machine tool sector more competitive by providing an ecosystem for production. Establishment of Machine Tool Parks will cut down logistic cost substantially and would be a step forward in making the sector cost effective, having enhanced export capability and favourable for attracting more investment. The park would be established by a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) formed by local industries, industry associations, financial institutions, Central / State Governments, R & D Institutions, etc. 

(iii) Common Engineering Facility Centre" for Textile Machinery is to be set up with active participation of the local industry and the industry association, which in turn would improve facilitation to the users along with visibility. The Common Engineering Facility that can be provided within such set ups are common foundry, common heat treatment, testing laboratories, design center, common prototyping, general and specific machinery, etc. The facility would enable textile machinery and other capital goods manufacturers to develop capital goods to meet the large requirements and improve capacity utilization, thereby reducing the variable cost of operation. This would also be established by a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) formed by local industries, industry associations, financial institutions, Central/State Governments, R&D Institutions, etc. 

(iv) Testing and Certification Centre" for earth moving machineries in view of the fact that it is soon going to be made a mandatory requirement and at present there is no test facility to test earthmoving machinery like that in the automobile industry. By setting up of the test centre, the import of second hand and outdated machinery could be restricted through mandatory testing and certification, In addition, the centre would facilitate evaluating the performance, statutory and regulatory requirements of construction and mining machinery and equipment. The setting up of Test and Certification Centre for Earthmoving Machinery will be done by the SPV specifically created by the Department of Heavy Industry with the approval of the Cabinet. After approval of the Scheme, a separate proposal for information of SPV for implementation of this particular scheme component will be sent to the Cabinet for approval. 

(v) The creation of a "Technology Acquisition Fund" under the Technology `Acquisition Fund Programme (TAFP) in order to help the Capital Goods Industry to acquire and assimilate specific technologies, for achieving global standards and competitiveness within a short period of time. The TAFP will provide financial assistance to Indian capital goods industry to facilitate acquisition of strategic and relevant technologies, and also development of technologies through contract route, in-house route or through joint route of contract and in-house. The Fund can extend partial support to industry to enhance their technology level, for achieving superior product quality / functionality, production capacity, safety and sustainability performance. This programme would bridge the technology gaps identified in the 12th Plan Working Group Report on "Capital Goods andEngineering Sector". 


The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs, chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, on 10th September, 2014 approved the proposal for providing non-plan budgetary support of Rs. 287.67 crore for liquidation of statutory dues (Provident Fund, Gratuity, Pension, Employees State Insurance and Bonus) and salary and wages from 01-09-2013 to 31-03-2014 for eleven Central Public Sector Enterprises (CPSEs) under the Department of Heavy Industry.  These are:

      Hindustan Cables Ltd.;  HMT Machine Tools Ltd.;  HMT (Watches) Ltd.; HMT (Chinar Watches) Ltd., Nagaland Pulp and Paper Co. Ltd.; Triveni Structural Ltd.; Tungbhadra Steel Products Ltd.;        Nepa Ltd.; HMT Bearings Ltd.; Hindustan Photo Films Limited, and; Heavy Engineering Corporation Ltd.

Payment of outstanding dues of salary and wages would mitigate the hardships of the employees.  The payment would also motivate them for giving better output and prepare them to achieve the goal of revival/re-structuring of these companies. In addition, clearance of outstanding statutory dues would result in fulfilment of statutory obligations.


A scheme on” Enhancement of Competitiveness in the Indian Capital Goods Sector” was notified on 5.11.2014.
 The Scheme aims to make Indian capital goods industry globally competitive by strengthening technology development, providing common manufacturing infrastructure and extending financial assistance for technology acquisition.

   The Scheme envisages Government Budgetary Support of Rs. 581.22 crore and Industry contribution of Rs. 349.74 crore.
   The proposed Scheme has components consisting of infrastructural interventions as well as financial intervention to boost competitiveness of the domestic capital goods industry as under:

  1. Setting up of Five Centers of Excellence (CoE) at Indian Institutes of Technologies/ Central Manufacturing Technology Institute for Technology Development in different sub sectors of Capital Goods.
  2. Setting up of one Integrated Industrial Infrastructure Facility (IIIF).
  3. Setting up of two common Engineering Facility Centers.
  4. Setting up of Test and Certification Centre with full Government Support.
  5. Technology Acquisition Fund Programme for acquisition of technology.
  6. Detailed Guidelines of the Scheme including funding pattern are available on the website of the Department of Heavy Industry, Ministry of Heavy Industries & Public Enterprises at http://dhi.nic.in.
  7. The scheme is likely to be implemented in five year.

The President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee on 5th November, 2014 presented the Standing Conference of Public Enterprises (SCOPE) Meritorious Awards at a function held in Vigyan Bhawan, New Delhi. 

The Winners of the SCOPE Meritorious Awards were SAIL,BPCL, Indian Oil, HAL, BEL, PFC, NSKFDC. The Commendation Certificates were awarded to OIL, WAPCOS, IRCON, REIL and THDC. The President also felicitated EIL, NBCC and CONCOR, the new Navratna CPSEs. 

Speaking on the occasion, the President complimented SCOPE for its initiative in instituting the SCOPE Meritorious Awards with the objective of identifying and recognizing outstanding performers in various segments of business activity. He also complimented the Department of Public Enterprises (DPE) and Standing Conference of Public Enterprises (SCOPE) for organizing the event which provides recognition to the efforts being made by CPSEs in a variety of areas such as Environmental Excellence & Sustainable Development; Corporate Governance; Corporate Social Responsibility & Responsiveness; Research and Development and Technology Development & Innovation. 


Shri G.M. Siddheshwara 0n 12th November, 2014 took over as new Minister of State for Ministry of Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises.

 Department of Public Enterprises issued Guidelines on Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) & Sustainability – 2014 for Central Public Sector Enterprises (CPSEs) in October 2014.  These Guidelines are issued to supplement the Companies (CSR Policy) Rules 2014 issued by Ministry of Corporate Affairs under the provisions of Companies Act, 2013.  The guidelines are intended to reinforce the complementarity of CSR and Sustainability and to advise the CPSEs not to overlook the larger objective of sustainable development in the conduct of business and in pursuit of CSR agenda. The guidelines are in the nature of initiatives or endeavour which the key stakeholders expect of CPSEs in discharging their CSR.   In the guidelines, the need for taking sustainability initiatives is emphasized in addition to requirement of mandatory compliance with CSR Rules. 

(ii)   As per the mandate of DPE, Department of Public Enterprises does not implement schemes/programmes which directly impact the common people. However, the Department is implementing the Counseling, Retraining and Redeployment (CRR) Scheme to provide opportunities of redeployment through counseling and retraining to separated employees of CPSEs rendered surplus as a result of modernization, technology upgradation and manpower restructuring in CPSEs. The department, as a part of this scheme has trained 2136 VRS optees and redeployed 752 persons by the end of November, 2014.


Punctuality in attendance in the office – Installation of Aadhar based Biometric Attendance System.  169 employees of DHI are marking attendance on the Biometric System.

Ensuring cleanliness on regular basis in the office.  Officer of the level of DS/Director are put on roaster duties for inspecting cleanliness in the premises/Sections/corridors on daily basis.

Implementation of e-Office for official work.  All Sections have been covered. e-Leave has been made mandatory. 

Re-designing of the Website of DHI to make it GIGW compliant as well as more interactive.  The re-designed version will be launched after security clearances. 

Initiation of process for ISO 9001:2008 Certification for AEI, PE-XI and TSW(B) Sections.  The certifying agency has been invited for inspection.

            A Scheme on “Enhancement of Competitiveness in the Indian Capital Goods Sector” notified on 5thNovember 2014 with a provision of Rs.930.96 crore out of which Rs.581.22 crore would be provided by GOI through grants-in-aid and remaining would be contributed by consortium of industries.  The scheme envisages creation of five Centres of Excellence, one Integrated Industrial Infrastructure Facility Park for Machine Tool, two Common Engineering Facilities Centres, one Testing and Certification Centre for Construction Equipment and Earthmoving Machinery and a Technology Acquisition programme. 
            R&D Project initiated for Advance Ultra Super Critical Technology through BHEL, NTPC, IGCAR.  It will increase fuel efficiency of Thermal Power Plants by 46% and achieve a reduction in coal consumption and CO2 emission by 11%.  The estimated cost of the project is Rs.1100 crore.  With this India will emerge as one of the primary developers of this technology.
A Scheme for “Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Electric and Hybrid Vehicles in India” prepared.  Its important components are – Demand and Supply Incentive, Public Charging Infrastructure, R&D and Pilot Projects.  The scheme envisages potential demand for 6-7 million hybrid/electric vehicles by 2020, anticipated fossil fuel saving of over Rs.60,000 crore, considerable CO2 reduction and additional job creation of 3 lakhs.  Total outlay of scheme is approx. Rs.14000 crore.  
            BHEL launched totally flexible fuel boilers, first of its kind for super critical power plant.  Flexible boilers can use both domestic and imported coal.

Under NATRiP, the following facilities were completed:-

ICAT-Manesar -  Pass by Noise, CAD/CAE Lab, Rotary Actuator facility, Universal Pneumatic Actuator and GARC-Chennai – Airbag Lab, CAD/CAE Lab, Universal Pneumatic Actuator, Equipment for   Optics Lab, Cyclic Actuator; NATRAX–Indore  – CAD/CAE Lab, Powertrain Lab; REIL to install one MWp SPV Power Plant at Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Katra Railway Station, J&K.  The work on Solar Power Plant started on 28th October 2014.  The Solar Power Plant of one MW will generate 14.6 lakh units in a year which will provide s saving of approx. Rs.1 crore per year to Railways and provide 24 hours power supply at the station.  The Power Plant will help in annual reduction of 1400 tons of COemmission.  This is unique initiative taken by Indian Railways. 

HMT Gear for Sonar Systems developed and exported by HMT Kalamassery for the first time in India.  HMT Kalamassery is currently working on the development and manufacture of a Directing Gear for the Indian Naval Ship Brahmaputra which is scheduled for delivery in January 2015.

Preparing a road map for identifying PSUs that are not capable of revival for closing them after giving benefit of VSS.  The proposal for 5 CPSEs has been submitted to CCEA.

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