Tuesday, 23 January 2018

Inauguration of ASEAN India Business and Investment and Expo, Promoting Mutual Trade and Investment, 22-23rd January, 2018

The ASEAN – India Business and Investment Meet and Expo was jointly inaugurated by Mr Suresh Prabhu, Hon’ble Minister of Commerce and Industry, India with the ASEAN Ministers and Gen. (Dr.) (Retd.) V K Singh, Hon’ble Minister of State for External Affairs, India. The Ministers from ASEAN countries included H.E. Mr Lim Jock Seng, Hon’ble Minister at the Prime Minister’s office and Second Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Brunei, H.E. Mr Enggartiasto Lukita, Hon’ble Minister of Trade, Indonesia, H.E. U Khin Maung Cho, Hon’ble Union Minister of Industry, Myanmar, H.E. Mr Chhuon Dara, Hon’ble Secretary of State, Ministry of Commerce, Cambodia, H.E. Ms Nora Kakilala Terado, Under Secretary, Department of Trade and Industry, Philippines, H.E. Ms Chutima Bunyapraphasara, Hon’ble Deputy Minister of Commerce, Thailand, H.E. Mr Cao Quoc Hung, Hon’ble Vice Minister of Industry and Trade, Vietnam. H.E. Mr Lim Jock Hoi, Secretary General of ASEAN had also attended the event.

The inaugural plenary, on the theme of ‘Promoting Mutual Trade and Investment for Shared Prosperity’ covered discussions on strengthening India’s economic relations with the countries in the East with both sides aiming to scale up bilateral trade and investment in the region. The session focused on trade facilitation measures taken to promote trade between India and ASEAN countries in manufacturing sector, promoting SME ecosystem to enhance entrepreneurship quotient in the region and startup culture to create new pipeline of ideas.

Mr Suresh Prabhu, Hon’ble Minister of Commerce and Industry, thanked the ASEAN ministers for their presence stating that India and ASEAN share deep and strong relations. He stressed that India is looking forward to further deepening our engagement with ASEAN, with all the special commemorative events lined up for the next few days, celebrating our Shared Values and Common Destiny. He further stated that this event will help to envision the next 25 years of India-ASEAN relations, highlighting our various sectoral collaborations.

ASEAN India Expo showcases the best in trade and services in India and ASEAN region. Buyers and exhibitors across the sectors such as Infrastructure, manufacturing, manufacturing & engineering, ICT, healthcare, Tourism, Environment, Agriculture, Science & technology, Finance and Banking, Logistics and Retail are participating in the Expo. The Expo has participation from businesses and CEOs across ASEAN countries, ASEAN country Pavilions, Pavilions of Indian States and Export Promotion Councils.

The sessions and discussions to be held on 23rd January 2018, the second day of the event will focus on sectors of mutual interest particularly namely Services, Regional Value Chains and Connectivity, Agriculture, Trade and Investment. The technical sessions will be presided by Mr Ravi Shankar Prasad, Minister for Electronics and Information Technology and Law and Justice, Smt. Harsimrat Kaur, Minister for Food Processing Industries and the Valedictory Session by Sh. Arun Jaitley, Minister for Finance and Corporate Affairs.

Courtesy; pib.nic.in

Monday, 22 January 2018

Explore ancient medical systems like Ayurveda for alternative solutions for Cancer treatments: Vice President

Yoga training should be imparted to students as part of ensuring healthy lifestyles; Vice-President asks researchers to come out with path-breaking advances to prevent cancer.

Addresses the Graduation Ceremony at Tata Memorial Centre, Mumbai

The Vice President of India, Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu has asked the medical researchers to come up with path breaking advances in the prevention and treatment of cancer. He was addressing the Graduation Ceremony at Tata Memorial Centre, Mumbai today. The Governor of Maharashtra, Shri Ch. Vidyasagar Rao and other dignitaries were present on the occasion.

The Vice President said that researchers must explore ancient Indian medical systems like Ayurveda for alternative solutions. We should see if there are some indigenous cost-effective solutions that may be useful to make cancer treatment more affordable, he added.

The Vice President said that Cancer is a major public health concern in India and has become one of the 10 leading causes of deaths. He further said that Cancer is one of the dreaded diseases and also a very costly disease in terms of treatment. A better understanding of the likely causes and early detection could help reduce the disease burden in our country, he added.

The Vice President asked doctors and students in the medical profession to create awareness on the need to observe personal hygiene and maintain sanitation. Lack of personal hygiene causes infections like HPV, which in turn has the potential to cause cancer of the cervix, he added.

The Vice President said that regarding treatment of cancer patients, there is a need to operate more number of palliative care centres or hospices. Such centres are needed to provide relief from pain and emotional distress to suffering patients, he added.

The Vice President has appealed government, media and doctors to promote measures that prevent cancer. He also said that there is further need to educate people about available treatment options.

The Vice President said that the screening of people will help in early detection of cancer. He also wanted the people to go back to roots, especially the way we live and the way we think. He said awareness must be created, particularly, among youngsters, on the need to lead healthy lifestyles and avoid consumption of junk food.

The Vice President said that Yoga training should be imparted to students as part of ensuring healthy lifestyles. Yoga is a holistic approach to healthy living and there is evidence that it enhances the well being and quality of life, he added.



Following is the text of Vice President’s address:

“I am happy to be with all of you at the graduation ceremony in which the students of the Tata Memorial Centre are being awarded various degrees.

It is a day of celebration and an important day in the life of this illustrious institution that was founded almost eighty years ago. It is a memorable day in the life of the students and teachers as they complete an important milestone in the sacred mission of transmission of knowledge and skills. It is a joyous occasion for the parents of the students as they see their wards move on successfully in their educational journey.

This institution has a long and impressive track record of serving the suffering humanity.

Cancer is a major public health concern in India and has become one of the ten leading causes of deaths.

In India, it is estimated that there are about 3 million cases of cancer at any particular point of time with 10 lakh new cases occurring every year. About 5 lakh deaths occur annually in the country due to cancer in India.

Nearly two-thirds of the patients present themselves in advanced stages that are not amenable to cure. Nearly half of them die within a year of diagnosis.

Fortunately, nearly two-thirds of the cancers are completely preventable and amenable to early detection. Greater awareness and early detection are therefore very critical for reducing the incidence of cancer.

I am pleased to learn that Tata Memorial Centre, a Constituent Institute of Homi Bhabha National Institute (Deemed to be University), which offers super-specialty and PG courses, trains the largest Human Resource for the management of Cancers in India including training of Sub-Saharan African doctors, Nurses and Doctors from Myanmar, Bangladesh and other countries.

I commend TMC for providing its technical know-how for setting up cancer hospitals and cancer wings at Government Medical Colleges and other Centers. I am told that TMC under Department of Atomic Energy has started setting up new Cancer Care Centres at Mohali, Punjab, Banaras Hindu Campus, Varanasi, Railway Cancer Hospital, Varanasi,Cancer Hospital, Vishakhapatnam and Booraha Cancer Institute, Guwahati, Assam.

I am also delighted to learn that Tata Memorial Hospital has launched a new programme called "Navigation Program for Patient Care - KEVAT". For the first time in India, Tata Memorial Centre (TMC) has introduced a new specialty in Healthcare. In collaboration with Tata Institute of Social Sciences and support from Tata Trust, a one year (full time) Advanced Diploma in Patient Navigation(KEVAT) is being offered. I think this is a step in the right direction. Very often, patients and their families don’t understand diagnoses, are not aware ofvarious treatment options and available resources. This course will create a specialized workforce of trained professionals to help patients manage their medical experience. It will assist all sections of society, particularly vulnerable populations, to overcome barriers to health care access.

By assisting patients with navigating through complicated and multi-step health care system, the doctors will earn the much-needed trust and goodwill.

Cancer is one of the dreaded diseases and also a very costly disease in terms of treatment. A better understanding of the likely causes and early detection could help reduce the disease burden in our country. According to projections made by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) in 2016, the total number of new cases is expected to touch 17.3 lakh by 2020. It has been estimated that the number of deaths due to cancer is likely to reach 8.8 lakh cases by 2020. The data also showed that only 12.5 per cent of patients come for treatment in the early stages of the disease. Breast cancer was the most common among women, while the incidence of mouth cancer was highest among men.

The burden of cancer is expected to further increase due to increase in life expectancy, lifestyle factors, unhealthy dietary habits, growing usage of carcinogenic substances such as tobacco, betel nut and alcohol. Infection with certain virus and obesity are directly attributable to cancers of cervix and breast respectively.

In Maharashtra, the leading sites of cancer in men are the cancers of the mouth, throat, lungs, esophagus (food pipe). These cancers are related to use of tobacco, supari and alcohol. Making lifestyle changes by avoiding the cancer-inducing substances can reduce the incidence of these cancers.

In women, the commonest are cancers of cervix, breast and oral cavity. Cervix cancers can be eliminated by providing basic amenities to women such as running water and privacy of a toilet. Awareness has to be created on the need to observe personal hygiene and maintain sanitation. Lack of personal hygiene causes infections like HPV, which in turn has the potential to cause cancer of the cervix.

Breast cancer can be controlled by measures for obesity control. Simple interventions such as Visual Examination of Cervix by health worker and regular breast self examination have proven to be beneficial for early detection.

With non-communicable diseases on the rise, concerted action is need from all stakeholders, including health professionals on creating awareness among the people, particularly youngsters, on the need to lead healthy lifestyles and avoid consumption of junk food, alcohol and tobacco.

According to Factsheet of Global Adult Tobacco Survey, India 2016-17 (GATS-2), 19.0 per cent of men, 12.8 per cent of women and 21.4 per cent of all adults smoke tobacco; 42. 4 per cent of men, 14.2 per cent of women and 28.6 per cent of all adults either smoke tobacco and/ or use smokeless tobacco.

Right from school days, Yoga training should be imparted to students as part of ensuring healthy lifestyles. I would like to emphasize that Yoga is a holistic approach to healthy living and there is evidence that it enhances the well being and quality of life.

As regards treatment of cancer patients, there is a need to operate more number of palliative care centres or hospices. Such centres are needed to provide relief from pain and emotional distress to suffering patients.

I am glad that Tata Memorial Centre with its mission of “service, education & research”, is one of the largest tertiary cancer centres in India and is serving the needs of a large population with a record of 65,000 new cases registered and five to six lakh cases coming for follow-up at Tata Memorial Hospital.



Dear students,

You are privileged to be graduating from this institution of excellence. You have successfully acquired new knowledge and skills.

You have chosen a profession that is the noblest among all the professions. In the Indian tradition, doctors are considered to be embodiments of divinity because they can make a difference between life and death. One of the 1000 names of Lord Vishnu, incidentally, is ‘VAIDYA’.

The patients come to the doctor with great expectations. They look for soothing words, healing touch and a medicine that will restore them to good health.

Your specialization here is even more challenging because cancer is generally perceived as an incurable disease and impossible to root out.

The prolonged treatment with its attendant pain and financial resource drain can be so stressful to the patients and their families. There is tremendous suffering, anxiety and it is usually a traumatic experience for the entire family.



Dear students,

You have multiple challenges ahead of you but I am sure many of the basic skills you need in your profession, you have already acquired during your stay in this institute. But, then, there are no full stops in education. There are only commas and semi-colons. You will have to constantly learn. You must strive to be the best in your field.

I congratulate each one of you on your achievements for which you are being awarded degrees today. I do hope you will continue to research the causes of cancer and find new ways to alleviate human suffering.

I would urge you to broaden your knowledge base and practice medicine with greater competence, confidenceand compassion.

You should try to explore if the ancient Indian medical systems like Ayurveda can offer some alternative solutions. According to some scholars, cancer treatment with Ayurveda goes back to 7th century BC, where Atreya and Dhanwanthari used herbal medicines for treating early stages of cancer. We should see if there are some indigenous cost-effective solutions that may be useful to make cancer treatment more affordable.

I urge all the medical researchers across the country to focus on research and come up with path breaking advances in the prevention and treatment of cancer. In fact, as a country, we must devote more energy to research and development. We may get some insights from the past that may be useful to illuminate the future. We must access the state of the art from the countries around the world.

I am extremely pleased that that the Tata family has established this Centre and also many institutions of excellence. The private sector has been playing an important role in nation building and the Tatas have been the forerunners in many ways. I hope many other industrial houses will demonstrate their social commitment by establishing many more social enterprises and institutions for the larger public good.

I congratulate the Dean and the faculty members of the Tata Memorial Centre who are shaping this institution as a centre of excellence in teaching and research.

I wish you and the Centre many more fruitful years in your most noble endeavour to bring relief to the patients suffering from cancer. I am glad that the Homi Bhabha National Institute is harnessing nuclear power for improving the quality of life of our citizens and has set new benchmarks of academic excellence. My sincerest appreciation to the Vice Chancellor and his dedicated team of professionals.

I once again appreciate the commitment and caring attitude of the doctors in this centre.

I wish them all the very best in their efforts to ensure that the students are exposed to the state of the art in the specialized fields each of them is pursuing here.



JAI HIND!”

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Courtesy: pib.nic.in

National Conference of State channelizing Agencies, Public Sector Banks and Regional Rural Banks of NHFDC held

A National Conference of the State channelizing Agencies, Public Sector Banks and Regional Rural Banks of National Handicapped Finance and Development Corporation (NHFDC) held on 19th January 2018. Shri Thaawarchand Gehlot, Union Minister for Social Justice and Empowerment, Shri Krishan Pal Gurjar, Minister of State for Social Justice and Empowerment and Smt. Shakuntala D. Gamlin, Secretary, Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities (Divyangjan), graced the occasion, Directors on the Board of NHFDC, Shri SCL Gupta and Shri D.N. Sharma and the senior officers of SCAs/Gramin Banks and PSBs participated in the conference.

Shri Thaawarchand Gehlot and Shri Krishan Pal Gurjar addressed the participating agencies and advised for better coordination with NHFDC and Channelising agencies for the smooth and better implementation of NHFDC Schemes for the benefit of larger number of Persons with Disabilities (Divyangjan).

Secretary, DEPwD and Directors of NHFDC also addressed the participants. Shri D.R. Sarin, CMD, NHFDC addressed the issues relating to the implementation of NHFDCs schemes for the benefit of Persons with Disabilities (Divyangjan) and invited suggestions from the SCAs/PSBs/RRBs to enhance the outreach of concessional schemes of NHFDC throughout the country.

In the Conference, incentive cheques were also given to the best performing SCAs/PSBs/RRBs of NHFDC.

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Courtesy: pib.nic.in

Shri Gajendra Singh Sekhawat participate in the Agriculture Ministers’ Conference held in Berlin

Union Minister of State for Agriculture & FW, Shri Gajendra Singh Sekhawat led an Indian delegation comprising of Dr OP Chaudhury, Joint Secretary, Department of Animal Husbandry, Dairying & Fisheries and HK Suanthang, Director, DACFW, to participate in the Agriculture Ministers’ Conference held on 20.01.2018 in Berlin, Germany during the 10th Global Forum for Food and Agriculture.

The Conference, organised with the theme of “Shaping the Future of Livestock – Sustainably, Responsibly, Efficiently” was attended by 69 agricultural ministers and heads of 6 international organisations including FAO, WTO and World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE). A Communiqué was issued by the Ministers to safeguard the supply of and access to sufficient, safe, nutrients and affordable food from livestock production for the growing world population.

Union Minister of State highlighted India’s impressive performance in the dairy, meat and poultry sector and the initiatives taken by India in the field of diseases control and animal welfare. Shri Sekhawat also stressed the actions taken by India to mitigate the effect of climate change, both in the animal and crop sector and called upon the developed countries to abide by the principles of equity but common and differentiated responsibilities towards tackling climate change.

Shri Sekhawat accompanied by the delegation also utilised their visit to Berlin for meeting Agriculture Ministers from 3 other countries – Germany, Argentina and Uzbekistan.

With his German counterparts, the two Ministers reviewed the overall relationship of the two countries in agriculture sector. Shri Sekhawat also impressed upon the German Minister to use his good office for early resolution of Indian rice export being subjected to arbitrarily fixed maximum residue Limit on Tricyclazole at 0.01 mg/kg by European Union. Union Minister of State mentioned EU´s non acceptance of digital phytosanitary certificates. The German Minister, in response, conveyed his admiration for India´s advance on digitalisation of the certificate and assured to personally take up the matter with the EU Authority concerned.

During his meeting with Mr. Zoir Mirzaev, Uzbekistan Minister for Agriculture and Water Management, the MoS informed his counterpart about the priority areas of India in agriculture sector and suggested areas such as farm machinery, skill development and crop residue management as possible areas of cooperation. The two Ministers also discussed potential items of trade such as moong beans, and opportunities for available investment in each country. The discussion was further supplemented by the two Ministers taking a walk through the various exhibitions of the Uzbekistan stall.

Shri Shekhawat also met the Argentinean Minister of Agriculture Dr Luis Miguel Etchevehere and discussed various areas of mutual interest including trade in agriculture products such as fruits, vegetables and meat. The Minister also conveyed India’s interest in the success achieved by Argentina in farm mechanisation. He also sought collaboration to such technologies to suit Indian conditions, and obtained technology for manufacture of silo bag to reduce storage losses in India.

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Courtesy: pib.nic.in

Saturday, 20 January 2018

States pledge to galvanise behaviour change efforts to ensure ODF India in 2019

On 19th and 20th January, 2018, the Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation organized a two-day National Consultation on Swachh Bharat Mission (Gramin) in Gurugram, Haryana. The Consultation was attended by the senior most officers from States and Swachh Bharat Mission Directors from across the country. The participants focused on a variety of issues related to SBM(G), including progress so far, way forward, with a particular focus on IEC (Information Education Communication) efforts underway in the States.

With the SBM entering its pre-final year of implementation, the States shared their plans on achieving an Open Defecation Free status in 2018, with a strong focus on behaviour change communication, delivered through a mixture of targeted inter-personal communication and mass communication. The States shared their plans for sustaining their ODF status after achievement, by ensuring that the toilets constructed under the Mission are used by all members of every household in a village. The State IEC plans for 2018 were presented and discussed with the Ministry.

The Ministry also held special sessions on resolving issues faced by the States on a case-to-case basis, with a special focus on the States of Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Odisha. Young professionals, deployed as Zila Swachh Bharat Preraks in districts, also attended the workshop and interacted with Ministry officials to share the work being done by them at the grassroots and were assured of consistent support by the senior officers of the Ministry in their role as valuable resource persons for the districts and States. Entrepreneurs in the sanitation sector were also invited to make presentations to the States on innovative toilet technologies developed by them that can help scale up the design and production of toilets, and help design toilets that are easier for use by senior citizens and the differently- abled persons .

The Secretary, Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation Shri Parameswaran Iyer in his inaugural address at the workshop, spoke about the long way that the Mission had come since its launch. He shared that 3 lakh villages, 300 districts and 10 States/Union Territories have been declared Open Defecation Free, and that the rural sanitation coverage today stands at over 76%, up from 39% at the time of the launch of the Mission in October 2014. He also expressed confidence that, with the sustained and focused implementation that the Mission was receiving by the State governments, the Prime Minister's vision of a Swachh Bharat by October 2, 2019 would be realized.

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courtesy: pib.nic.in

WCD Ministry felicitates 112 exceptional women achievers

The Minister of Women and Child Development, Smt Maneka Sanjay Gandhi felicitated 112 exceptional women achievers in New Delhi today. The Minister of Food Processing Industries, Smt Harsimrat Kaur Badal and Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare, Ms. Anupriya Patel were also present on the occasion. These women achievers ‘FIRST LADIES’ are those who are first to set a milestone in their respective fields like the first female Merchant Navy Captain, first train driver of passenger train, first female fire fighter, first female bus driver, first Indian woman to reach Antarctica among others.

Welcoming the First Ladies, the Minister of Women and Child Development, Smt Maneka Sanjay Gandhi said that the First Ladies are a unique group of women who are the first in their respective fields of achievement and each one deserved to be recognized. " Your achievement will inspire other women to break the glass ceiling and do the women of India proud", she said. Smt Maneka Gandhi said that the WCD Ministry has been organising similar events to recognise women achievers in different ways which has yielded great results.

The Minister of Food Processing Industries, Smt Harsimrat Kaur Badal congratulated the First Ladies and hoped that their number will grow bigger and bigger. The Minister said that women in India face a number of challenges, and achieving the distinction of being a first in any field would have been truly challenging for most women. " You have shown and proved that it can be done and it will happen" Smt Harsimrat Kaur said.

The Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare, Ms Anupriya Patel appreciated the WCD Ministry for its unique initiative "First Ladies". The initiative is in the spirit of Beti Bachao Beti Padhao programme and the women achievers will act as a role model and inspiration for women across the country. "You have started a journey which will take India forward", the Minister exhorted.

Smt Aishwarya Rai Bachchan graced the occasion with her presence and interacted with the First Ladies.

A coffee table book showcasing the achievements of these ladies was also released on the occasion. These first ladies busted stereotypes and broke the glass ceiling to become the Number One. Facebook and DD News have partnered with the Ministry of Women and Child Development in this unique initiative.

On March 8th, the WCD Ministry honours with Nari Shakti Puruskars, those women who have contributed to society but have remained unsung. The Nari Shakti Puraskars are conferred by the Hon'ble President of India at Rashtrapati Bhawan. Along with these Puruskars, the Ministry has started a new system of recognising in different ways, those women who have broken the glass ceiling and ventured into unusual fields. The Ministry had collaborated with Facebook in 2015 to recognise '100 Women Achievers' who have excelled in diverse sectors of public work. These women were hosted by His Excellency, the President of India. 'First Ladies' is the second leg of the ‘100 Women Achievers’ campaign of the Ministry.

Click here for profiles of the 112 Women Achievers.

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courtesy: pib.nic.in

Fourth India International Science Festival to be held in Lucknow

The fourth edition of the India International Science Festival will be held in Lucknow. The exact dates and other details will be decided later. The decision to hold the Festival in Lucknow was taken at the first preparatory meeting for the 4th India International Science Festival (IISF) chaired by Union Minister for Science & Technology, Environment, Forest & Climate Change and Earth Sciences, Dr. Harsh Vardhan. Officials of Ministries of Science and Technology, Earth Sciences and DG, CSIR and representatives of Vijnana Bharti (VIBHA), the partner organisation for the festival, were among those who attended the meeting.

The 1st IISF was held at Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) New Delhi in December, 2015. The mega S&T expo attracted more than 3 lakh people. India had also set a Guinness Book of World Records, when 2000 school students performed two experiments at the Festival.

The second Festival at CSIR-National Physical Laboratory, New Delhi in December 2016 showcased Indian achievements in various fields of science and technology. The third in the series was held in October 2017 in Chennai.



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Courtesy:pib.nic.in

Inauguration of ASEAN India Business and Investment and Expo, Promoting Mutual Trade and Investment, 22-23rd January, 2018

The ASEAN – India Business and Investment Meet and Expo was jointly inaugurated by Mr Suresh Prabhu, Hon’ble Minister of Commerce and Indus...