The Gist of Press Information Bureau (PIB): October 2015

The Gist of Press Information Bureau: October 2015

Prime Minister Launches SKILL INDIA

The Skill India logo depicts a clenched hand in which a spanner and pencil are firmly held, exemplifying the empowerment of the individual through skilling. The spanner and pencil are held together, suggesting that both skill and general education are at parity and aspirational for India’s youth. The tagline, ‘Kaushal Bharat, Kushal Bharat’ suggests that skilling Indians (‘Kaushal Bharat’) will result in a happy, healthy, prosperous and strong nation (‘Kushal Bharat.’) The Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY), the Ministry’s flagship, demand-driven, reward-based skill training scheme will incentivise skill training by providing financial rewards to candidates who successfully complete approved skill training programmes. Over the next year, PMKVY will skill 24 lakh youth, across India. For the first time, the skills of young people who lack formal certification, such as workers in India’s vast unorganised sector, will be recognised. Through an initiative known as ‘Recognition of Prior Learning’ (RPL), 10 lakh youth will be assessed and certified for the skills that they already possess. Prime Minister also launched the Skill Loan scheme. Loans ranging from Rs 5,000-1.5 lakhs will be made available to 34 lakh youth of India seeking to attend skill development programmes over the next five years.Sanction letters for the first ever Skill Loans were handed out by the Prime Minister to aspiring trainees. During the function, Shri Narendra Modi awarded Skill Cards and Skill Certificates to trainees who had recently completed training through the Pilot Phase of PMKVY, which started in May 2015. Such Skill Cards and Skill Certificates will allow trainees to share their skill identity with employers. Each Skill Card and Skill Certificate features a Quick Response Code (QR Code), which can be read through a QR reader on mobile devices. Trainees can use these to share their skill qualifications with employers in a quick and reliable way during the job search process.

Across the country, 2,33,000 youth were awarded certificates from ITIs, and 18,000 plus graduating students received job offer letters on the occasion of World Youth Skills Day. The Prime Minister personally presented industry job offer letters to five female ITI graduates at the event. The Minister of State (Independent Charge) of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship welcomed the audience at the outset of the event. He outlined the steps the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship is taking to turn the Prime Minister’s vision of a skilled India into reality. He also underscored the importance of strategic partnerships in achieving the Skill India vision, showcasing inter-Ministerial initiatives to scale up skill development efforts.

World Youth Skills Day and the launch of SKILL INDIA were celebrated nation-wide. State Governments organized events to emphasize the importance of skill development for the youth in their states, mobilizing candidates, launching fresh training programs and felicitating successful trainees. ITIs across the country also participated in the event through a live feed of the event. Across India, special PMKVY mobilization camps are being organized at 100 locations with Nehru Yuva Kendra Sangathan (NYKS). A national SMS campaign is being rolled out to build awareness of the program, reaching about 40 crore subscribes. Fresh PMKVY training was initiated in 1,000 centres across all States and Union Territories in India today, covering 50,000 youth in 100 job roles across 25 sectors.

Skill India’ launched on 15th July, 2015 would aim to provide skill training to a very large number of people at a much faster pace than before. During 2015-16 itself, there is a target to provide skill training to about 120 lakh youth in the Country by the Central Government. While, 60% of the skill training would be done through the Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship, the balance would be done through 20 other Ministries/Department of the Government of India. This target includes 24 lakh youth to be trained/certified under Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY) that was launched yesterday. Government has recently approved ‘Common norms’ for skill training, where skill training course has been defined to be of minimum duration of 200 hours for fresh training and at least 80 hours for skill upgradation. Common norms for skill training have been introduced with a view to ensure basic minimum standards for skill training. With this, the target for skill training would be revisited and fresh targets for different Ministries/Department for the year 2015-16 would be notified shortly.

Railway PSU – “RailTel” Bags 12th National Awards for Excellence in Cost Management 2014

RailTel Corporation a “Mini Ratna (Category-I)” PSU is one of the largest neutral telecom services providers in the country owning a Pan-India optic fiber network covering all important towns & cities of the country and several rural areas covering 70% of India’s population. RailTel is in the forefront in providing nationwide Broadband Telecom & Multimedia Network in all parts of the country in addition to modernization of Train operations and administration network systems for Indian Railways. With its Pan India high capacity network, RailTel is working towards creating a knowledge society at various fronts and has been selected for implementation of various mission-mode Govt. of India projects in the telecom field.

Measures to Check Population Growth Interventions under family planning program:

1. Scheme for home delivery of contraceptives by ASHAs at doorstep of beneficiaries: The govt. has launched a scheme to utilize the services of ASHA to deliver contraceptives at the doorstep of beneficiaries. 8.85 lakh ASHAs are now distributing contraceptives at the door step.
2. Scheme for ASHAs to ensure spacing in births: The scheme is operational from 16th May, 2012. Under this scheme, services of ASHAs are being utilised for counselling of newly married couples to ensure delay of 2 years in birth after marriage and couples with 1 child to have spacing of 3 years after the birth of 1st child.
3. Pregnancy testing kits have been made an integral part of ASHA kit and are being used to diagnose pregnancy early, so as to ensure early registration of pregnancy/safe abortion services.
4. A new family planning method, i.e. post-partum IUCD (PPIUCD) has been introduced in the program. PPIUCD services are being provided by trained health providers in government hospitals, within 48 hours after the delivery.
5. Basket of choice has been expanded with introduction of a new IUCD-375 of 5 years effectivity, in addition to the already existing IUCD–380A of 10 years effectivity.
6. Dedicated counselors (RMNCH counsellors) are placed at high case load facilities for providing family planning counseling to clients.
7. Celebration of World Population Day 11th July & Fortnight: The event is observed over a month long period, split into fortnight of mobilization/sensitization followed by a fortnight of assured family planning service delivery and has been made a mandatory activity from 2012-13 and starts from 27th June each year.
8. Other On-going interventions:

  • Assured delivery of family planning services for both IUCD and sterilisation.
  • National Family Planning Indemnity Scheme’ (NFPIS) under which clients are insured in the eventualities of deaths, complications and failures following sterilization and the providers/ accredited institutions are indemnified against litigations in those eventualities.
  • Compensation scheme for sterilization acceptors - under the scheme MoHFW provides compensation for loss of wages to the beneficiary and also to the service provider (& team) for conducting sterilisations.
  • More emphasis on Spacing methods like IUCD.
  • Availability of Fixed Day Static Services at all facilities.
  • Quality care in Family Planning services by establishing Quality Assurance Committees at state and district levels.
  • Contraceptives supply management up to peripheral facilities.
  • Demand generation activities in the form of display of posters, billboards and other audio and video materials in the various facilities.

Following strategies have been taken up by the Jansankhya Sthirata Kosh/National Population Stabilization Fund as population control measures:

Advocacy & IEC activities:- JSK as a part of its awareness and advocacy efforts on population stabilization, has established networks and partnerships with other ministries, development partners, private sectors, corporate and professional bodies for spreading its activities at the national, state, district and block level.

Prerna Strategy:- JSK has launched this strategy for helping to push up the age of marriage of girls and delay in first child and spacing in second child the birth of children in the interest of health of young mothers and infants. The couple who adopt this strategy awarded suitably. This helps to change the mindsets of the community.

Santushti Strategy:- Under this strategy, JansankhyaSthirataKosh, invites private sector gynecologists and vasectomy surgeons to conduct sterilization operations in Public Private Partnership mode. The private hospitals/nursing home who achieved target to 10 or more are suitably awarded as per strategy.

Government has no any proposal at present to impose restriction on having more than two children in family. The Family Welfare Programme in India is voluntary in nature, which enables a couple to adopt the family planning methods, best suited to them, according to their choice, without any compulsion.

Progress on Rafale Fighter Aircraft Deal

As per the India-France Joint Statement issued by the two countries during the Prime Minister’s visit to France, Government of India conveyed to the Government of France that in view of the critical operational necessity for Multirole Combat Aircraft for Indian Air Force (IAF), Government of India would like to acquire (36) Rafale jets in fly-away condition as quickly as possible. The two leaders agreed to conclude an Inter-Governmental Agreement for supply of the aircraft on terms that would be better than conveyed by Dassault Aviation as part of a separate process underway, the delivery would be in time-frame that would be compatible with the operational requirement of IAF; and that the aircraft and associated systems and weapons would be delivered on the same configuration as had been tested and approved by Indian Air Force, and with a longer maintenance responsibility by France. A Negotiating Team has been constituted to negotiate the term s and conditions of the procurement of 36 Rafale jets and recommend the draft agreement. The meetings of the Indian Negotiating team with the French side have commenced.

Environment Ministry Launches Teeb-India Initiative

The Government has launched The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity TEEB-India Initiative (TII) to highlight the economic consequences of the loss of biological diversity and the associated decline in ecosystem services. The Initiative focussed on three ecosystems, namely forests, inland wetlands and coastal and marine ecosystems. TII has been implemented under the Indo-German Biodiversity Programme as technical cooperation with GIZ. The outcome of the pilot projects will be fed into the sectoral synthesis for the three ecosystems. It will be released at the Brazil-India-Germany TEEB Dialogue, being hosted by India in September 2015. The overall study report will be released at the 21st session of the UNFCCC CoP being held in November-December, 2015 at Paris. A review workshop was organised here, under the aegis of TII to review the outcome of 12 pilot projects, which demonstrate the application of economic approaches to address policy issues related to conservation and sustainable management of these ecosystems. The proceedings involved presentation of the outcome of the pilot studies. The three case studies on forest ecosystems looked at ecosystem services flows from Western Ghats and application of economic approaches to human-wildlife conflict. In the coastal and marine ecosystems, the results related to effectiveness of mangrove conservation, assessment of the value of bycatch and the impact of seasonal fish ban. Within wetlands, the outcome related to economic efficiency of restoration investment and integration of ecosystem service values in land and water resources management in wetland basins.

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