“It’s time for India to eat right,” said Health Minister
Harsh Vardhan on Thursday, kick-starting POSHAN Maah 2019 with a year-long
social and mass media campaign on the Eat Right India movement.
Leading with a tweet-a-day focusing on a weekly theme of eating
right for the next 365 days, Dr.Vardhan also launched the new Eat Right India
logo that represents a healthy plate, an online eat right quiz and online course
for frontline health workers.
Stating that the country is in need of a movement on preventive
health for all in the backdrop of the increasing burden of non-communicable
diseases including diabetes, hypertension and heart diseases, widespread
deficiencies of vitamins and minerals and rampant food-borne illnesses,
Dr.Vardhan said: “The Eat Right India movement is a crucial preventive
healthcare measure to trigger social and behavioural change through a judicious
mix of regulatory measures, combined with soft interventions for ensuring
awareness and capacity building of food businesses and citizens alike.”
The Minister said Eat Right India takes a holistic approach to
food habits that promote health and sustainability. “Launching this movement on
this platform with the support of stakeholders such as the World Health
Organization (WHO), along with Ministers and delegates from South East Asian
countries, is a landmark event,” noted the Minister.
A recent study conducted on the profile of persons accused
in trafficking in almost 200 cases in West Bengal and Andhra Pradesh has
revealed that one-third of them are women.
In the study, Ms.Sen analysed documents such as chargesheets,
FIRS and police general diaries related to 198 human trafficking cases
registered between 2008 and 2018. Of the 429 people whose names appeared as
accused in these 198 cases, only in 30 were the accused family members,
including from the extended family.
“There was a belief in some people that in many cases family
members are involved in trafficking. That does not hold true in this research.
In most cases, if the survivors are asked they will say Didi (sister) took them
from their village. But on a more detailed inquiry, it will be revealed that the
accused is not a relative but a neighbour or an acquaintance,” SubhasreeRaptan,
programme manager of GGBK said.
The largest group of the traffickers (34%, or 148) were
neighbours, while 31% were completely unknown to the survivors, the study said.
Ms.Raptan highlighted that in many cases of trafficking,
survivors were not told that they were entitled to victim compensation from
public prosecutors representing their case in courts.
The last published report of the National Crime Record Bureau
for 2016 recorded 8,132 cases of human trafficking in the country, of which
3,579 cases (around 44%) were from West Bengal alone.
Offering some solace to the crisis-hit auto industry, Road
Transport and Highways Minister NitinGadkari on Thursday assured ‘full’
support from the government to help overcome the free fall in vehicle sales.
He said the Centre was looking at steps, including export sops and GST
incentives, to help create demand in the sector.
The Minister also clarified that the government did not intend
to ban ICE (internal combustion engine) powered vehicles.
He, however, added that the government would promote the use of
alternative fuels and electric vehicles to tackle issues of a high crude oil
import bill and pollution. Thursday’s statement comes as a relief for the
industry, given that it was Mr.Gadkari who had in 2017 asked car makers to move
to electric or they would be “bulldozed” into doing it.
Any decision on GST on automobiles would be taken up for
discussion at the upcoming meeting of the GST Council on September 20. However,
the industry is seeking an early solution as they fear that customers would
defer purchases anticipating further reduction in prices.
Mr.Gadkari also said that his Ministry would award 68 road
projects worth about ₹5 lakh crore in the next three months, which, in turn,
would help generate demand for commercial vehicles.
The Finance Ministry has decided to fix a cut-off mark in
terms of total business of public sector banks (PSBs) to create the position
of chief general managers (CGMs).
Last week, Finance Minister NirmalaSitharaman had said PSBs will
now have the position of CGM which was thus far available only to the State Bank
Post merger, the total business of PNB-OBC-UBI pack will be
close to ₹18 lakh crore, the Canara and Syndicate combine, over ₹15 lakh crore
and Union Bank-Corporation Bank-Andhra Bank, ₹14.6 lakh crore.
Indian Bank and Allahabad Bank combine had a total business of
₹8.08 lakh crore as on March 31, 2019. A bank can appoint a maximum of one CGM
for four general managers (GMs), the Ministry said.
Candidates with two years of experience as general managers will
be eligible to become CGM, the Ministry said in a communication, adding 50%
relaxation would be possible if the board approves the proposal. Eligible
candidates must have two years of residual service, it said.
“The process of promotion to the post of CGM may be on the lines
of the extant process for promotion to the post of GMs in nationalised banks,
which is done by a selection committee comprising MD & CEO, government nominee
director, RBI nominee director and two outside experts,” the communication said.
The U.S. has backed India’s move to declare JeM chief
MasoodAzhar and three others as terrorists individually under a new
Besides Azhar, India on Wednesday declared Mumbai terror attack
accused Zaki-ur-Rehman-Lakhvi, fugitive gangster DawoodIbrahim, and
Lashkar-e-Taiba founder Hafiz Saeed as individual terrorists.
The decision to declare all four of them as terrorists has been
taken nearly a month after Parliament approved a crucial amendment to the
Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Amendment (UAPA) Act, 1967.
The four are the first to be declared terrorists under the new
law, an official at the Union Home Ministry said in New Delhi.
According to the UAPA, earlier only a group could be declared as
terrorist.The amendments made in the Act allows the government to declare even
an individual as terrorist.These four are involved in terrorist attacks in India
and have been designated as global terrorists under United Nations.
The US Department of the Treasury has designated Saeed, 2008
Mumbai terror attacks mastermind, as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist,
and the US, since 2012, has offered a USD 10 million reward for information that
brings the JuD chief to justice.
North Korea wants the number of U.N. international staff in
the country reduced by the end of the year over what it claims is the
politicisation of aid by parties hostile to its government, but the United
Nations says the mission’s current “light footprint” is vital.
Kim Chang Min, secretary general of North Korea’s National
Coordinating Committee, said in a letter to the U.N. resident coordinator in
North Korea that in recent years “U.N. supported programs failed to bring the
results as desired due to the politicization of U.N. assistance by hostile
“U.N. operations already have a light footprint on the ground
and continued capacity at current levels is vital for ensuring continued U.N.
support for critical food security, water, nutrition programming as well as
mobilizing resources,” he said.
Mr. Kim’s letter to U.N. coordinator Tapan Mishra, a copy of
which was obtained Thursday by , says North Korea values its collaboration with
U.N. agencies and appreciates Mishra’s efforts “to reactivate U.N. support in
North Korea had initially told the United Nations it was sending
a Cabinet-level minister to the General Assembly meeting that starts Sept. 24.
But the latest updated speakers list downgrades its participation to the “chief
of delegation,” which usually means the country’s U.N. ambassador though it
could also be an even lower ranking government official.
Member-countries of the World Health Organisation (WHO)
South-East Asia Region have resolved to eliminate highly infectious
childhood killer diseases measles and rubella by 2023.
Measles elimination and rubella control has been a regional
flagship priority since 2014. Bhutan, DPR Korea, Maldives, Sri Lanka and Timor-Leste
have eliminated measles and Bangladesh, Bhutan, Maldives, Nepal, Sri Lanka and
Timor-Leste have controlled rubella.
To achieve the new targets, the member-countries resolved to
strengthen the immunisation systems for increasing and sustaining high level of
population immunity against the two diseases at both the national and
The resolution calls for ensuring a highly sensitive laboratory
supported case-based surveillance system – better evidence for appropriate
planning and response. It also emphasises on preparedness for outbreak response
All countries pledged to mobilise political, societal and
financial support to ensure the interruption of transmission of indigenous
measles and rubella virus by 2023.