The Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement (Amendment) Ordinance, 2015

The Union Cabinet, chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, has given its approval to amend the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement (Amendment) Ordinance, 2015. 

Changes in the provisions of the Act will facilitate farmers to get better compensation and rehabilitation and resettlement benefits in lieu of land compulsorily acquired by the appropriate Government. 

The Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation & Resettlement Act, 2013 came into effect from 01.01.2014. However, it has been reported that many difficulties are being faced in the implementation of the Act. In addition, procedural difficulties in the acquisition of lands required for important national projects required to be mitigated. In order to remove them, certain amendments were made in the Act while further strengthening the provisions to protect the interests of the 'affected families'. In view of the urgency, these were brought about by an Ordinance on 3112.2014. Subsequently, on 10.03.2015 the Lok Sabha passed the Amendment Bill to replace the Ordinance. The Amendment Bill passed by the Lok Sabha includes some further changes to the Ordinance. The important changes brought about by the amendment are as follows: 

i. Compensation in accordance with the First Schedule and rehabilitation and resettlement specified in the Second and Third Schedules of the Act are extended to the thirteen Acts mentioned in the Fourth Schedule of the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation & Resettlement Act, 2013, namely, - (1) The Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Sites and Remains Act, 1958, (2) The Atomic Energy Act, 1962, (3) The Damodar Valley Corporation Act, 1948, (3) The Indian Tramways Act, 1886, (4) The Land Acquisition (Mines)Act, 1885, (6) The Metro Railways (Construction of Works)Act, 1978, (7) The National Highways Act, 1956; ( 8) The Petroleum and Minerals Pipelines (Acquisition of Right of User in Land) Act, 1962; (9). The Requisitioning and Acquisition of Immovable Property Act, 1952; (10) The Resettlement of Displaced Persons (Land Acquisition) Act, 1948; (11) The Coal Bearing Areas Acquisition and Development Act, 1957 (12) The Electricity Act, 2003; (13) The Railways Act, 1989. 

ii. In order to expedite the process of land acquisition for strategic and development activities such as national security or defence of India including preparation for defence and defence production; rural infrastructure including electrification; affordable housing and housing for poor; industrial corridors set up by the appropriate government and its undertakings (in which case the land shall be acquired upto 1 km on both sides of the designated railway line or roads for such industrial corridors); infrastructure projects including projects under public private partnership where the ownership of the land continues to vest with the Government, appropriate governments are empowered to take steps for exemption from "Social Impact Assessment" and "Special Provisions for Safeguarding Food Security". In addition acquisition for such projects are exempted from the "Consent" provisions of the Act as well. However, the appropriate governments are required to ensure that the extent of land for the proposed acquisition, is the bare minimum land required for the project. The appropriate government is also required to undertake a survey of wastelands including arid land and maintain a record detailing the same. 

(iii) Prior to the amendment, the provisions of the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation & Resettlement (RFCTLARR) Act 2013, extended to a 'private company'. However, as per the Companies Act, 2013, a 'Private company’ means a company having a minimum paid-up share capital of one lakh rupees or such higher paid-up share capital, thereby restricting the provisions of the Act to such companies only and excluding other form of companies like proprietorships, partnerships, corporations, nonprofit organizations, etc. Therefore, in place of the term 'private company', the term 'private entity' has been substituted thereby including all non¬governmental entities. 

(iv) Further, as The Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation & Resettlement Act, 2013 was drafted prior to the passage of the Companies Act, 2013, the Act referred to the Companies Act, 1956 for the definition of 'Company'; which is substituted by the Companies Act, 2013. 

(v) In cases where land acquisition process under Land Acquisition Act, 1894 had been initiated and the Award was passed, but either possession of land was not taken or compensation was not paid, there is provision of lapsing of such proceedings after five years of passing of Award. The period during which the proceedings for acquisition of land was held up on account of any stay or injunction issued by any court is excluded for the purpose of calculation of five years period. Similarly the period where possession has been taken but compensation is lying deposited in a court or in any designated account is also to be excluded in the calculation of the five years. 

(vi) Section 46 of the Act was amended to clarify that provisions relating to rehabilitation and resettlement in case of land purchased through private negotiations is applicable in cases when land is purchased by persons other than the Government, Government Company and Trust or Society aided or controlled by the Government. 

(vii) To facilitate the process of hearing of objections by land losers, the authority, constituted for this purpose, shall hear such objections within the district where the land has been acquired. 

(viii) When an offence under this Act is committed by any person who is employed in the Central or State Government at the time of commission of such an alleged offence, the court will take cognizance of offences under this Act provided the procedure laid down in section 197 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 is followed. 

(ix) The period provided in Section 101 for return of unutilized land has been modified to five years or the period specified for the completion of the project. 

(x) The provision of "Removal of Difficulties" was made applicable to the entire Act rather than 'Part’ as the word 'part' was used in the Act inadvertently. Further, the time period to remove the difficulties was extended from two years at present to five years. 

Background:

The Department of Land Resources (DoLR) is administering the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act (hereinafter referred to as Act), 2013. This Act came into force on 01.01.2014 by repealing the Land Acquisition Act, 1894. It was observed that some provisions of the Act were making the implementation of the Act difficult and this made it necessary to bring changes in the Act, while safeguarding the interest of farmers and affected families in cases of land acquisition. 

Accordingly, a Conference of State Revenue Ministers was organized in Delhi in June, 2014. Suggestions received from the State Governments, Union Territories, Ministries/Departments and other stake holders were considered. Further, consultation with Secretaries and officers of concerned ministries administering the Acts mentioned in the Fourth Schedule of the Act were held in October, 2014. Based on these discussions and deliberations, some amendments were proposed in the Act. Accordingly, the Cabinet in its meeting held on 29.12.2014 approved the proposal of the Department of Land Resources to amend the RFCTLARR Act, 2013 and to promulgate the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement (Amendment) Ordinance, 2014. The Cabinet also approved the proposal of the Department to introduce a replacement bill in the Parliament to replace the Ordinance. Accordingly, RFCTLARR (Amendment) Ordinance, 2014 was promulgated on 3112.2014. The Budget Session of the Parliament that is 4th Session of the 16th Lok Sabha and 234th Session of Rajya Sabha commenced on 23.02.2015. 

The Bill was taken up for consideration and passed by the Lok Sabha on 10.03.2015 incorporating the official amendments to the Bill. The Minister of Rural Development has also given notice for Motion for Consideration and Passing of the Bill Passed in Lok Sabha to the Secretary General Rajya Sabha on 13.03.2015. However, the Bill could not be taken up for consideration in the Rajya Sabha as the Rajya Sabha was adjourned on 20.03.2015. 


Courtesy: pib.nic.in

Union Home Minister highlights steps to make the country safe & secure; Says it has been an year of consolidation


The Union Home Minister Shri Rajnath Singh has said it has been an year of consolidation as the Government has taken a series of proactive steps to make the country safe and secure. He was addressing a Press Conference here today to mark the one year of NDA Government under the leadership of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi.

The Home Minister underlined the need to uphold the Constitutional provisions to ensure the sanctity of Centre-State relations. On the issue of Black Money, he reminded that one of the first steps taken by the Government after assuming office was to constitute an SIT and subsequent legal measures have been put in place to curb this menace. Shri Singh said that efforts are on to tackle the threat of terrorism and the Government is in constant touch with various agencies to ward off such threats. Effective Border Management has been put in place to counter the threat of cross-border terrorism, he added. On the issue of relief to farmers affected by unseasonal rains and hailstorm, the Home Minister said the quantum of compensation under the NDRF and SDRF has been more than doubled and now the farmers with crop loss between 33% and 49% have been made eligible to seek the financial assistance.

Following are the highlights of the work done by the Ministry in the last one year:

Security Scenario

· Overall security scenario in the country continues to remain peaceful barring incidents of a blast in Burdwan (West Bengal) and minor IED blast in Bengaluru.

· Security situation in North Eastern States is being monitored regularly at various levels, with sustained CI operations against militant outfits.

· LWE violence is down by 22% in 2014 over previous year. However recent attacks in Chhattisgarh are a cause of concern.

· Security Forces neutralized 132 terrorists in Jammu & Kashmir, during 2014 and the current year.

Jammu & Kashmir

· Peaceful conduct of Assembly Elections in J&K, - from November 25 to December 20, 2014 - high voter turnout of 66%.

· ‘UDAAN’ scheme launched aiming to provide employment to the unemployed youth of Jammu & Kashmir. Trained 3,361 candidates, 3,133 candidates offered jobs, about 2,500 are working in various companies in the country.

· Cash relief to the Kashmiri migrants in Jammu and Delhi/ NCR enhanced w.e.f. 1st May 2015 from Rs.1,650/- per head per month to Rs.2,500/- per head per month, subject to a maximum of Rs.10,000 per family enhanced from Rs.6,600 per family.

Foreigners Division

· e-Tourist Visa scheme launched on 27th November 2014 covers 74 countries and 9 Indian airports; 1,35,000 people so far benefited.

· Merger of PIO & OCI schemes by enactment of Citizenship (Amendment) Act 2015.

Disaster Management

· During 2014-15, loss to life & property minimized due to prompt response to major disasters like cyclone HUDHUD in AP and Odisha, floods and landslides in J&K. 7 lakh people rescued.

· Immediate relief and assistance provided through NDRF to Nepal after the recent earthquake.

Policy initiatives under Disaster Management

· SDRF & NDRF Compensation more than doubled to next of kin of deceased persons from Rs.1.5 lakh to Rs. 4 lakh. Farmers, with crop loss between 33% and 49%, made eligible for assistance.

· Local disasters like lightning, heat wave etc., now covered for relief under SDRF.

· Battalions under NDRF increased from 10 to 12.

· Allocation in SDRF almost doubled from Rs.33,583 crore during 2010-15 to Rs. 61,219 cr during 2015-20.

Border Management

· Border Infrastructure: 50 Km of roads, 103 Km of fencing, 218 Km of flood lighting and 39 BOPs completed (on Indo-Bangladesh and Indo-Pakistan border).

· 14 km LED Pilot Project for floodlighting in Punjab Sector has been completed.

· Integrated Check Post (ICP) building completed at Raxaul on India-Nepal border. Cargo Terminal of ICP Agartala inaugurated.

· Rs. 800 Crore released to the Bordering States for development of the socio-economic infrastructure in the bordering villages under BADP.

· Trial Bus service runs between Guwahati and Dhaka undertaken.

· Bus service between Delhi and Kathmandu commenced.

Sikh Riots

· Additional compensation for Next of Kin of 1984 anti-Sikh riot victims; Justice Mathur Committee to re-investigate deserving riot cases.

Police Reforms

· 58% police stations across the country have started using CCTNS to register FIRs.

Police Welfare

· 3,531 Houses and 92 barracks constructed for CAPF personnel.

· Grant of Rs.37 crore provided to the CAPFs and Assam Rifles for payment of ex- gratia compensation to the Next of Kin of deceased.

· Delhi Police launched a web-based App. for ‘Police Clearance Certificate’ (PCC) and the mobile app 'Himmat' on January 1, 2015.

Women/children Safety

· Approved recruitment of 2,772 Mahila personnel in 21 companies of SSB.

· Approved 33%reservation for women in direct recruitment in Non-Gazetted posts from Constable to Sub-Inspector in the CAPFs & police forces of all the UTs including Delhi Police.

· Project to set up an “Emergency Response System” for Women in Distress funded under the Nirbhaya Fund fast tracked.

· Detailed advisories issued to tackle crimes against women including acid attack on women.

· States/UTs advised to launch a dedicated campaign for rescuing missing children. More than 3,000 children rescued during this operation.

CYBER CRIMES

· An Expert Group constituted to prepare a Road Map to effectively tackle Cyber Crimes.

· Another Expert Committee set up to suggest changes in Information Technology Act, Indian Penal Code, Criminal Procedure Code & Evidence Act etc. to deal with cybercrimes more effectively.

National Population Register

· Biometric capture of more than 28.44 crore persons, completed under NPR, by the office of Registrar General of India so far. Total biometric enrolment including the enrolment done by Unique Identification Authority of India now 85 crore.

UT Matters

· Introduction of weekly chartered flight services from Port Blair to Car Nicobar. Another chartered flight introduced between Chennai and Port Blair.

· Contract for acquisition of two ships signed at a cost of US $ 29.26 million will enhance the frequency of service of ships which in turn will improve the passenger movement and cargo traffic and will give boost to tourism to Lakshadweep.

During the Press Conference, the Union Home Minister Shri Rajnath Singh was accompanied by the Ministers of State for Home Affairs Shri Kiren Rijiju and Shri Haribhai Parathibhai Chaudhary. The Union Home Secretary Shri LC Goyal, Secretary (Border Management) Shri Anoop Kumar Srivastava and Secretary (Official Language) Shri SK Srivastava were also present. Director General, Press Information Bureau Shri Frank Noronha conducted the Press Conference.

Courtesy: pib.nic.in

Finance Minister Shri Arun Jaitley to Inaugurate the New Bank Note Paper Line at Security Paper Mill, Hoshangabad Tomorrow

To Flag off the First Consignment of Rs.1000/- Bank Note Paper; 
SPMCIL Sets-Up Another Joint Venture Company Called Bank Note Paper Mill India Pvt. Ltd. at Mysore with 12,000 MT Capacity; 
Combined Production from the new Paper Line at SPM, Hoshangabad and the Joint Venture Company at Mysore after Commissioning will be About 18,000 MT of Bank Note Paper and will Lead to Combined Savings of Foreign Exchange from These Two Bank Note Projects of About Rs.1,500 Crore in the coming Years

The Minister of Finance, Corporate Affairs and Information and Broadcasting Shri Arun Jaitley will inaugurate the New Bank Note Paper Line of 6000 MT capacity tomorrow at Hoshangabad in Madhya Pradesh. He will also flag off the first consignment of Rs.1,000 Bank Note paper made indigenously to Currency Note Press, Nashik at Security Paper Mill, Hoshangabad in the august presence of Shri Shivraj Singh Chouhan, Chief Minister, Madhya Pradesh and other dignitaries. This New Paper Line of 6,000 MT capacity is part of the indigenisation, of the Bank Note paper, under taken by Security Printing and Minting Corporation of India Limited (SPMCIL). SPMCIL has also set-up another Joint Venture Company called Bank Note Paper Mill India Pvt. Ltd. at Mysore with 12,000 MT capacity. The plant of this Joint Venture Company at Mysore is targeted to be commissioned by the year end.  The combined production from the New Paper Line at SPM, Hoshangabad and the Joint Venture Company after commissioning will be about 18,000 MT of Bank Note paper, which will meet the major requirement of Bank Note Paper indigenously as against the major requirement being imported at present.  The combined savings of foreign exchange from these two Bank Note projects will be about Rs.1,500 crore in the coming years.

The foundation stone for this New Bank Note Paper Line was laid on 17.12.2011 by the then Finance Minister, Shri Pranab Mukherjee. The project has been completed at a cost of Rs.495 crores within the budget and within the time schedule. This plant is environment friendly with minimal use of the power and water.  No additional water has been taken for this plant from Narmada River. This is a start-of-the-art plant with capability for incorporation of the advanced security features into the Bank Note paper.  This plant has been incorporated with the latest pulp manufacturing plant, control systems, equipped with automatic sheet cutter and packaging and has online inspection system.  This plant is capable of manufacturing all denominations of Bank Note paper with capacity to introduce 3-dimentional toned water mark.  The new plant has state of the art paper testing laboratory to the international standards for testing of the Bank Note Paper before dispatch to the Currency Note Presses.  This New Paper Line is environment friendly aiming for zero liquid discharge.  The latest surveillance system SAP-ERP and with state-of-the-art fire and safety system has been installed. This plant has a latest Mould Cover manufacturing facility for manufacture of the Bank Note paper with latest designs.

The annual turnover from this new Bank Note Paper Line when it comes into full production stream of 6000 MT capacity, will be about Rs.450 crores. The plant will procure local raw materials like cotton comber, linter and chemicals except for the security features, which are obtained through exclusivity contracts. This plant will give boost to the local economy as lot of direct and indirect employment will be generated and supply of raw materials and services and spare parts will be sourced indigenously.

The production of the Bank Note paper from this New Paper Line at Hoshangabad and from the Joint Venture Paper Mill at Mysore will reduce the import of Bank Note paper considerably. This will also reduce possibility of diversion of the paper supplied by the foreign suppliers to the other destinations for the purpose of generating the fake currency.  Commissioning of this project is part of Make-in-India – Indigenisation of Currency and to become self-reliant in production of the raw materials requirement for the production of the Bank Notes. 

The existing Security Paper Mill at SPM, Hoshangabad had commenced production of the Currency and the Non Judicial Stamp Paper during 1967 with the process know-how and technology provided by M/s Portals, UK. However, with the advent of new technology in printing of the Bank Notes, requisite modernisation in the old paper lines could not be done and with the result the latest security features like wider windowed security thread etc. could not be carried out.  Therefore the higher denomination Bank Note paper could not be manufactured on these old lines. The old lines are presently being primarily used for the production of the Non Judicial Stamp Paper (NJSP) of about 3000 MT per annum to meet the NJSP requirements of the state Governments.

Security Printing and Minting Corporation of India Limited (SPMCIL), a Miniratna Category-I CPSE, is a wholly owned Schedule-A Company of Govt. of India. The Company was incorporated on 13.01.2006 and has nine Units engaged in minting of Coins, Printing of Bank Notes, Passports, Postal Stationery, Non-Judicial Stamp Papers, and other Security Documents & manufacture of Security Paper. 

The performance of the Corporation in all spheres has improved significantly since corporatisation. SPMCIL has more than doubled the production of the Coins and Bank Notes while manpower has reduced by one third.  SPMCIL has minted finely designed commemorative coins on various personalities and important events.  It has introduced new security products like Excise labels, warehousing receipts etc. The turnover of the company has increased about three times during the last eight years to about Rs.4400 crores. SPMCIL has been paying dividend @20% of the Net Profit continuously for the last four years.  It has obtained EXCELLENT rating in its MoU performance for the last five years. It has paid back Rs.1110 crore loans of BRBNMPL and Ministry of Finance, invested about Rs.1540 crore from its own resources and created cash reserves of about Rs.1500 crore.  It has carried out phase-I modernisation of Mints by introducing state-of-the-art coining machinery.  One state-of-the-art Currency Printing line has been installed at Bank Note Press, Dewas. Modernisation and capacity expansion of Ink Factory at Dewas has been completed. SPMCIL today stands as the successful model of Corporatisation of the erstwhile Government Units.

Courtesy: pib.nic.in

IT Vision for Indian Railways to be Prepared

The Ministry of Railways has decided to set up the ‘Technology Mission for Indian Railways’(TMIR) as a consortium of Ministry of Railways, Ministry of Human Resource Development, Ministry of Science and Technology and Ministry of Industries on an investment sharing model for taking up identified railway projects for applied research and use on Indian Railways. 

The ‘Technology Mission for Indian Railways’ (TMIR) will function through the ‘Mission Implementation and coordination committee’ (MICC), consisting of the following:- 

(a) Prof. N.S.Vyas, former Head/Mechanical Engineering, IIT-Kanpur and presently Vice Chancellor/Rajasthan Technical University—Mission Chairman

(b) Shri Alok Kumar, Exe. Director/CE(G), Railway Board—Co-Chairman

(C) Nominees of Ministry of Railways, RDSO, Railway Research Centres, Ministry of HRD, Ministry of Science & Technology and Ministry of Industries – Members

The ‘Mission Implementation and Coordination Committee’ (MICC) will formulate the ‘Mission Management Manual’ (MMM) for functioning of ‘TMIR’ and the domain specific Sub-Committees for various fields of railway working and also for monitoring the progress of research and technology projects. 

‘ TMIR’ will also monitor progress of research projects of the existing Railway Research Centre (RRC)/Kharagpur and other 4 upcoming Railway Research Centres sanctioned in Budget 2015-16. Thus, Railways’ investment in applied research activities will be fruitfully converted to technology development for actual use in railway working. Execution of various projects under ‘TMIR’ will be dealt in terms of procedures, to be defined in its ‘Mission Management Manual (MMM)’. 

The Nodal Directorate for functioning o the ‘Technology Mission for Indian Railways’ (TMIR) and its ‘Mission Implementation and coordination Committee’ (MICC) will be Efficiency & Research Directorate of Railway Board. 


Courtesy:pib.nic.in

Comprehensive changes on the anvil to protect interests of consumers

National Conference on Effective Functioning of Consumer Fora

The government has realized the plight of Indian consumers and the Department of Consumer Affairs as the nodal organization for the protection of consumer rights has initiated a major step to rewrite the Consumer Protection Act so as to remove various lacunae in the Act that has been noticed over the last 28 years of its enforcement. This was observed by Shri Arun Jaitley while addressing the “National conference on effective functioning of Consumer Fora" organized by Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution, Shri Ram Vilas Paswan here today. He said that comprehensive amendments are therefore on the anvil to the consumer protection law that will introduce far reaching changes.

Presiding over the conference, Shri Ram Vilas Paswan, the Union Minister for Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution reiterated the commitment of the government to Consumer Protection. He pointed out that government alone, regardless of the sector it deals with or the domain it regulates, cannot adequately address several of these challenges. There is a need, he emphasised, for all stakeholders – the Central Government, State Governments to work together. He noted that for the law to be fully effective and serve the purpose for which it was enacted, simple, inexpensive and speedy justice ought to become the very reason for the existence of these courts. And that has to be accomplished through stringent monitoring of the working of the courts. It is also necessary to create an infrastructure that would help consumers understand the law and file complaints smoothly. Only then will we see a different picture of consumer justice and empowerment in India

In his welcome address, Shri Keshav Desiraju, Secretary, Department of Consumer Affairs, noted that consumers are a vulnerable lot for exploitation, more so in a developing country with the prevalence of mass poverty and illiteracy. The challenges that we confront would require policy coherence and coordinated program implementation, harmonization of the legislative framework and the regulatory apparatus. Over the years government has taken, many steps to strengthen the consumer movement in the country and to protect their interests. A legal system and a strong dispute redressal mechanism have been put in place with procedural simplicity and speedy and inexpensive redressal of consumer grievances.

Justice D.K.Jain, the President of the National Consumer Disputes Resolution Commission (NCDRC) noted that India enjoys a unique position in the consumer advocacy movement with a dedicated three tier Quasi­Judicial Consumer Dispute Redress Mechanism established at the District, State and National levels under the law. He emphasized the need for governments at the Centre and the States and the consumer courts to work closely together to provide effective and timely grievance redress to consumers.

The Conference on “Effective Functioning of Consumer Fora” which was attended by President and Members of the National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (NCDRC), Ministers and Secretaries in charge of Consumer Affairs in States and Presidents of State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commissions, deliberated upon the problems being faced in the smooth functioning of Consumer Fora and suggested measures to improve their functioning.

In the Conference, it was noted that:

·                    There should be uniform recruitment procedure and respectable remuneration for Presidents and Members of the Consumer Fora.

·                    It was impressed upon the State Governments to strengthen the infrastructure of the Consumer Fora for their smooth functioning and to expedite furnishing the pending Utilization Certificates of the grants provided by the Central Government and to seek further grants with detailed proposals.

·                    All the Consumer Fora need to use complete workflow of the Online Case Monitoring System (OCMS) application under the CONFONET Scheme. The State Governments should cooperate in implementation of the scheme and making it fully operational.

·                    Efforts should be made by all concerned to reduce the delay in disposal of consumer complaints. The State Governments were asked to initiate timely action for filling up of the vacancies of President and Member in the Consumer Fora. Endeavour should be made by the Consumer Fora to adhere to the time limits prescribed in the Consumer Protection Act, 1986.

·                       To meet the training needs of the Members of the Consumer Fora without having any legal background, it was emphasised that the training programme being administered by IIPA may be fully availed of. In addition, such Members may also be encouraged to undergo the one year distance mode course developed by National Law School University India.

Courtesy:pib.nic.in

‘Technology Mission’ for Indian Railways to be set up

The Ministry of Railways has decided to set up the ‘Technology Mission for Indian Railways’(TMIR) as a consortium of Ministry of Railways, Ministry of Human Resource Development, Ministry of Science and Technology and Ministry of Industries on an investment sharing model for taking up identified railway projects for applied research and use on Indian Railways. 

The ‘Technology Mission for Indian Railways’ (TMIR) will function through the ‘Mission Implementation and coordination committee’ (MICC), consisting of the following:- 

(a) Prof. N.S.Vyas, former Head/Mechanical Engineering, IIT-Kanpur and presently Vice Chancellor/Rajasthan Technical University—Mission Chairman

(b) Shri Alok Kumar, Exe. Director/CE(G), Railway Board—Co-Chairman

(C) Nominees of Ministry of Railways, RDSO, Railway Research Centres, Ministry of HRD, Ministry of Science & Technology and Ministry of Industries – Members

The ‘Mission Implementation and Coordination Committee’ (MICC) will formulate the ‘Mission Management Manual’ (MMM) for functioning of ‘TMIR’ and the domain specific Sub-Committees for various fields of railway working and also for monitoring the progress of research and technology projects. 

‘ TMIR’ will also monitor progress of research projects of the existing Railway Research Centre (RRC)/Kharagpur and other 4 upcoming Railway Research Centres sanctioned in Budget 2015-16. Thus, Railways’ investment in applied research activities will be fruitfully converted to technology development for actual use in railway working. Execution of various projects under ‘TMIR’ will be dealt in terms of procedures, to be defined in its ‘Mission Management Manual (MMM)’. 

The Nodal Directorate for functioning o the ‘Technology Mission for Indian Railways’ (TMIR) and its ‘Mission Implementation and coordination Committee’ (MICC) will be Efficiency & Research Directorate of Railway Board. 

Courtesy:pib.nic.in

4th North East Youth Festival begins at Majuli, Assam

The 4th North East Youth Festival has begun at Majuli, Assam. The Festival is being organized by the Nehru Yuva Kendra Sangathan (NYKS) on behalf of the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, Government of India. 
The festival was inaugurated by Union Minister for Chemicals & Fertilisers, Shri Ananth Kumar today.  Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Youth Affairs and Sports Shri Sarbananda Sonowal, Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Culture, Tourism and MoS for Civil Aviation, Dr. Mahesh Sharma were present on the occasion. Minister for Transport, Excise, Sports & Youth Affairs, Govt. of Assam Shri Ajit Singh along with prominent Members of Parliament from Assam were also present at the inaugural function as the Guests of Honour.
With contingents from the eight North East States, NYKS volunteers, delegates from other states for the Food Festival and Yuva Kriti and cultural troupes and youth delegates from the neighboring districts, about 2100 youth delegates are participating in the three day festival.  
The main components of the North East Youth Festival are: -
a.       Competition Events such as folk dances, folk songs, one act play, instrumental Guitar and Rock Band Competition
b.      Non Competition Events such as cultural, musical and martial arts show
c.       Food Festival and Yuva Kriti (All India flavour) and
d.      Seminars on youth related issues.
The North East Youth Festival is organized by the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sport, Government of India with the objective to foster National Integrity and to know each other better through exchange of culture besides promoting rich cultural heritage of various tribes and people of North Eastern States.  It is a grand celebration where the rich cultural traditions and colours of the North East are showcased. 
Courtesy:pib.nic.in