The News Editorial Analysis 13 October 2021

Telangana lose controle on krishana projects

PM Modi to launch master plan for multi-modal connectivity today;

Infrastructure plans would be designed and executed with a common vision

Prime Minister Narendra Modi would launch a national master plan for multi-modal connectivity, called PM GatiShakti, on Wednesday, the PM’s Office said on Tuesday.

The PMO said infrastructure development had faced many problems for decades, like lack of coordination between departments leading to multiple agencies digging up roads for laying cables, pipelines etc.

“This not only caused great inconvenience but was also a wasteful expenditure…PM GatiShakti will address the past issues through institutionalizing holistic planning for stakeholders for major infrastructure projects.”

Infrastructure plans would be designed and executed with a common vision, instead of being made in silos, it said. The master plan would cover projects of many Ministries and State Governments like Bharatmala, Sagarmala, inland waterways, dry/land ports, UDAN, textile clusters, pharmaceutical clusters, defence corridors, electronic parks, industrial corridors, fishing clusters and agri zones.

Movement of people and goods would be made seamless with the multi-modal connectivity envisaged under the master plan, it said.

“PM GatiShakti will provide the public and business community information regarding the upcoming connectivity projects, other business hubs, industrial areas and surrounding environment. This will enable the investors to plan their businesses at suitable locations leading to enhanced synergies. It will create multiple employment opportunities and give a boost to the economy.”

WHO: Covid recovery plans should include climate action.

The News Editorial Analysis 13 October 2021
WASHINGTON, DC – OCTOBER 12: Climate protesters demonstrate in front of the White House on October 12, 2021 in Washington, DC. The group was urging the Biden administration to do more to curb climate change and ban fossil fuels. Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images/AFP

The World Health Organization (WHO) is calling climate change the “single biggest threat facing humanity,” as it urged governments to take swift action to respond to the unfolding global crisis.

In a report released weeks ahead of the United Nations climate change conference in Glasgow, Scotland, the WHO governments should not only commit to a healthy and green recovery from the coronavirus pandemic but also to place health and social justice at the heart of the climate talks.

 “The next few years present a crucial window for governments to integrate health and climate policies in their COVID-19 recovery packages,” read the report, which outlined recommendations developed in consultation with over 400 experts and health professionals and 150 organizations.

“While near-term pandemic responses will largely set the pace and direction of health and climate goals, ambitious national climate commitments will be crucial to sustain a healthy recovery in the mid- to long-term,” it added.

Intimate, delicate links

Dr. Tedros Ghebreyesus, the WHO director general, said the pandemic had shone a light on the “intimate and delicate links” between humans and the environment, and that the same unsustainable choices killing the planet were also killing people.

“WHO calls on all countries to commit to decisive action at COP26 to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius-not just because it’s the right thing to do, but because it’s in our own interests,” he said.

COP26 refers to the 26th Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, where world officials will gather in November to discuss the way forward in stemming the worst impacts of the climate crisis.

The report stressed that climate change is already affecting health in many ways, like in the deaths and illnesses attributable to increasingly frequent extreme weather such as storms and heat waves, as well as the rise in zoonotic and vector-borne diseases, disruption in food systems, and mental health issues.

“Strengthening resilience and building adaptive capacity to climate change… can also lead to health benefits,” it said. “The public health benefits resulting from ambitious mitigation efforts would far outweigh their cost.”

Transition to renewables

Among the report’s recommendations is a just transition to renewable energy sources and moving away from the use of fossil fuels, such as coal.

“The burning of fossil fuels is killing us, causing millions of premature deaths every year through air pollutants, costing the global economy billions of dollars annually, and fueling the climate crisis,” the report read. “Governments and the private sector can support a green and healthy recovery from COVID-19 by reforming energy subsidies so no public money goes to fossil fuel production.”

WHO also called on governments to reimagine urban environments, transport and mobility by promoting sustainable and healthy urban designs, increasing access to green and blue public spaces, and prioritizing walking, cycling and public transport.

45M signatures

Alongside the release of the report was an open letter calling for national leaders and COP26 country delegations to step up climate action, signed by at least 45 million doctors, nurses and health professionals worldwide, representing over two-thirds of the global health workforce.

In the letter, the health workers said the “rapidly growing” climate crisis could be “far more catastrophic and enduring” than the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Integrating health and equity into climate policy will protect peoples’ health, maximize returns on investments and build public support for the urgently needed climate actions,” the letter read. “These climate actions must be taken now to protect the planet, and the health, well-being and prosperity of all people alive today and for generations to come.”

Telangana to lose control on Krishna projects.

Telangana lose controle on krishana projects

KRMB decides to take control of all projects from October 14, TS opposes.

Notwithstanding stiff opposition from the Telangana government, the full-fledged meeting of the Krishna River Management Board (KRMB) held here on Tuesday announced that the Centre’s gazette bringing all irrigation projects on Krishna under the jurisdiction of the board would come into force from October 14 as scheduled.

The board stated that Srisailam and Nagarjunasagar projects, along with all their outlets on Krishna, would come under the control of the KRMB from October 14. The KRMB urged the Telangana and AP governments to come forward to hand over projects to the board.In the meeting, the AP irrigation officials demanded bringing hydel power stations also under the control of the KRMB which was strongly opposed by Telangana. The AP officials pointed out that their state was suffering huge losses on irrigation and drinking waterfront due to unilateral decisions of the Telangana government to generate hydel power at projects on Krishna.

The Telangana government reiterated its demand to postpone the implementation of the gazette from October 14 until all its concerns and demands are addressed, primarily the allocation of Krishna water between AP and Telangana at the ratio of 50:50 against existing allocation of 66:34 (66 for AP and 34 for TS).

Telangana irrigation special secretary Rajat Kumar categorically stated in the meeting that the government was not ready to hand over projects on Krishna to the KRMB until the water sharing dispute between both the states was not resolved.

The board wanted the Telangana and AP governments to hand over the projects in two days. In a statement, the board said, “All the direct outlets (components) from the main reservoirs of Srisailam and Nagarjuna Sagar projects which are listed under Schedule -2 of the gazette notification may be prioritised by respective state governments for handing over to KRMB by October 14.”

Srisailam spillway, Srisailam right bank hydel unit, Pothireddypadu, pump house at Handri–Niva and Muchumarri lift schemes in Andhra Pradesh would be maintained by the KRMB. In Telangana,  first pump house of Kalwakurthy lift house, Srisialam left hydel power unit, 15 points of AMRP lift under Nagarjunasagar, head works and power block at Nagarjunasagar and Pulichintala and Tummilla lift scheme would come under the purview of the board once the notification is enforced, the KRMB  officials said.

After the meeting, Rajat Kumar said the government would seek legal opinion on KRMB’s decision to take over projects and take appropriate measures to halt the process before the Centre’s gazette comes into force.

India permits to operate domestic airlines with 100 pc capacity from Oct 18.

Amidst the prevalence of the COVID-19 pandemic, India has permitted to operate domestic airlines with 100 per cent capacity from October 18.

Currently, the seating capacity in airlines is restricted to 85 %. .The official statement by the Ministry of Civil Aviation said, “After review of the current status of Scheduled Domestic Operations viz-a-viz passenger demand for air travel in terms of the purpose specified in the initial order dated May 21, 2020…it has been decided to restore the scheduled domestic air operations with effect from 18-10-2021 without any capacity restriction.”

“The airlines airport operators shall however ensure that the guidelines to contain the spread of COVID are strictly adhered to and COVID appropriate behaviour is strictly enforced by them during the travel,” said an official statement. Earlier today, the Ministry of Civil Aviation circulated a fresh circular to all airlines and airports in India, asking them to provide protocol courtesy support to Members of Parliament at airports.

AP High Court stays allotment of seats in degree colleges.

A division bench comprising Justice M. Satyanarayana Murthy and Justice R. Raghunandan Rao heard a petition filed on Tuesday.

The Andhra Pradesh High Court has stayed the allotment of seats in degree colleges and directed the state government to file a counter affidavit with details on it, while issuing an interim order division bench comprising Justice M. Satyanarayana Murthy and Justice R. Raghunandan Rao heard a petition filed on Tuesday, by Rayalaseema Degree Colleges’ Association challenging GO No. 55, specifying norms to fill up seats in private degree colleges with provision for 70 percent in convenor quota and 30 percent in management quota.

Petitioner’s counsels V. Venkata Ramana and M. Srivijay argued that it was unfair to mention that 30 percent of seats allotted for management quota to be filled up by the convenor. They submitted that the government order was involved in the rights of the managements of the private degree colleges.

The government pleader submitted that the state government had brought such a system to ensure uniformity in admission procedure in all educational institutions in the state.

However, the court issued an order staying the allotment of seats in degree colleges scheduled to be held on October 20 and posted the next hearing to October 21. The court allowed to exercise web options to select the colleges of the choice of students for taking admission.

Inflation crosses 7%, factory output shrinks

Industrial production contracts 8% in August; food, transport costs drive consumer inflation to 7.3%

India’s consumer price inflation surged past the 7% mark, hitting 7.34% in September, with food price spikes reaching 10.7% compared with 9.05% in August.

Meanwhile, industrial output fell for the sixth month in a row for August.

The Index of Industrial Production (IIP) shrank 8% in August on a year-on-year basis, quick official estimates suggested, marking a marginally improved performance compared with July when output contracted 10.8%.

India’s industrial output fell for the sixth month in a row this August, even as consumer price inflation surged past the 7% mark, hitting 7.34% in September, with food price spikes reaching 10.68% compared with 9.05% in August.

The index of industrial production (IIP) shrank 8% in August on a year-on-year basis, quick official estimates suggest, marking a marginally improvement compared with July when output contracted 10.8% as per revised estimates. Earlier quick estimates had pegged July’s contraction at 10.4%.

August’s output does mark the lowest contraction since factory production began falling in March. Output had shrunk 18.7% in March, followed by contractions of 57.3% in April and 33.4% in May. Between April and August, industrial output has now shrunk 25%.

Heightened inflation, driven by food inflation and transport costs, will make it difficult for the Reserve Bank of India to cut rates in its December policy review meeting, economists reckoned.

“CPI inflation came in higher at 7.4% against our forecast of 6.4%… This number will be in the range of 6%-7% in October too as vegetable prices continue to rise and will exert pressure,” said Madan Sabnavis, chief economist at CARE Ratings in a note titled ‘Double Jeopardy for the Economy.’

All segments of industrial production contracted in August, including food, pharma products and fast-moving consumer goods, which Mr. Sabnavis termed as a surprise.

“Quite clearly, the initial boost received (after the lockdown began to wind down) has [become] diluted post the unlock,” he noted, adding that basic metals, tobacco and transport equipment were the only manufacturing sectors that saw some growth.

Overall, the mining sector shrank 9.8% in August, manufacturing output declined 8.6%, while power sector output contracted 1.8%. Capital goods, primary goods and consumer durables all clocked negative growth rates over 10% — 15.4%, 11.1% and 10.3%, respectively.

‘Highest in 24 quarters’

Barring March 2020, retail inflation had been over the RBI’s tolerance band of 6% for 10 months and the overall inflation rate for the second quarter of FY21 is now the highest in 24 quarters at 6.95%, said Sunil Kumar Sinha, principal economist, India Ratings and Research.

“It appears that the supply disruptions-led inflation is slowly coming under control, as core inflation (5.67%) moderated in September 2020 over the previous month.

However, this is the fifth consecutive month of core inflation in excess of 5%,” Mr. Sinha said, though he was hopeful of some comfort on inflation in October.

ICSI CS result 2021 declared at for professional program.

  • ICSI CS result 2021 has been declared for professional program. Candidates can check the CS professional result on the official website

ICSI CS result 2021 professional program: Know how to check

  • Go to the official website,
  • Click on the result link
  • Enter the details asked like roll number, date of birth, registration number
  • Submit the details
  • Download the ICSI CS result

“The Result-cum-Marks Statement for Professional Programme (Old and New Syllabus) Examination will be dispatched to the candidates at their registered address soon after declaration of the result. In case the physical copy of Result-cum-Marks Statement is not received by any candidate within 3O days of declaration of result, such candidates may contact the Institute at: along with his/her particulars,” the ICSI has said in official notification.

The CS executive program result will be released at 2 pm and the CS foundation program result will be declared at 4 pm.

The CS foundation examination for the December term will be conducted on January 3 and 4, 2022. “Next examination for Executive Programme (Old and New Syllabus) and Professional Programme (Old and New Syllabus) will be held from 21st December, to 31st December for which online examination enrollment form together with requisite examination fee shall be submitted from 14th October onwards,” ICSI has said.

Intel India sets up centre for artificial intelligence.

Intel India said it had partnered IIIT Hyderabad, Public Health Foundation of India and the Telangana government to unveil a research centre to focus on leveraging artificial intelligence (AI) to solve India’s population-scale challenges in sectors such as healthcare and smart mobility.

Intel India has announced its partnership with IIIT Hyderabad, Public Health Foundation of India and the Telangana government to set up a research centre for artificial intelligence. The news came during the inaugural of All India AI Virtual Summit. According to the media, this research centre will be established to focus on leveraging AI to solve India’s population-scale challenges in sectors such as healthcare and smart mobility.

The applied AI research centre, INAI, will play the role of catalyst to accelerate India’s leadership in artificial intelligence while creating national assets such as curated data sets and computing infrastructure, said Intel’s official. According to Intel, this has been aimed to attract global talent for high-impact research towards social sector development. 

While speaking at the summit, Union IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said India was bound to be a robust player in AI application as data was the ‘oxygen’ for AI. And India’s with its vast population, along with a robust digital ecosystem, is capable of producing that huge amount of data.

He, further added, in his speech, that, it is currently imperative to keep the AI ecosystem free from biases. To reason about it, he said, AI has great potential in the field of face recognition, but the facial recognition process should not show any bias of colour or ethnicity.Prasad also added that the government has always been keen that data of Indian citizens remained protected. Therefore, it is critical to place down specific standards, such as transparency in the algorithms, and the details must be shared. He believes that there must be a trust element in the system of artificial intelligence. 

Further, he stressed that users needed to be adequately informed about the technology and the purpose for which they are releasing their data.

Meanwhile, Nivruti Rai, country head, Intel India and vice president of data platforms group at Intel Corporation said that India has a massive amount of talent, technology, availability of data, and the potential for scaling up AI adoption. With these capabilities, there is a tremendous opportunity for India to lead human-centric applications and democratise artificial intelligence for the world. 

“Our goal is to make this 8% grow to 16% to 32%… because that’s the need of the hour,” she said. 

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