By: D.K Choudhary
Bill Passed in Karnataka Assembly to allow ‘Kambala’
i .The Karnataka assembly unanimously passed the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Karnataka Amendment) Bill, 2017 on February 13, 2017 to legalize the conduct of “Kambala” and bullock cart races in Karnataka.
ii. The Bill seeks to amend the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, (Central Act 59 of 1960) and exempt the two sports from the ambit of the Act keeping in mind their traditional nature and also to protect native breeds of buffaloes.
iii. The bill states that the traditional sports events of “Kambala” and “Bulls race or Bullock cart race” plays significant role in preserving and promoting traditions and culture among the people in the state.
iv. Kambala is a traditional annual buffalo race in marshy fields held in the coastal districts of the state in which buffalo pairs are made to race one after another in paddy fields and is considered a thanksgiving to the Gods for protecting the animals from diseases.
GNFC township becomes India’s first cashless Township
i. India’s first cashless township “Gujarat Narmada Valley Fertilizers and Chemicals (GNFC) township”was inaugurated by Gujarat CM Vijay Rupani on February 13, 2017
ii. Nearly 10,000 residents in GNFC have embraced various digital mode of payments instead of cash.
iii. In the township, residents are making cashless payments at shopping centres, schools, colleges, hospital, stadium, laundry and even at tea stalls.
India’s first floating elementary school inaugurated on Manipur’s Loktak Lake
i. India’s first floating elementary school particularly for drop outs has been inaugurated on Loktak lake at Langolsabi Leikai of Champu Khangpok floating village in Manipur on the occasion of World Wetlands Day on February 2, 2017.
ii. The school named as Loktak Elementary Floating School has been opened under an floating elementary schoolinitiative of All Loktak Lake Fishermen’s Union, Manipur (ALLAFUM) with the support of NGO, People’s Resources Development Association (PRDA) under a programme of ActionAid India.
iii. The need to establish such a school was felt considering sudden high dropout rate of children living in the Champu Khangpok floating villages
iv. Loktak Development Authority had removed more than 700 floating huts as part of clearing the lake after the introduction of Loktak Lake (Protection) Act 2006, about five years ago, resulting in largescale displacement of the fishing community and thus children of these fishing communities were forced to discontinue their education.
v. The school will not only cater to the need of the children but for the illiterate adults as well. The newly-inaugurated school in the floating village is currently providing education to around 40 children from Class I-III by engaging two local teachers.
vi. PRDA will pay the volunteers under the project called ‘Empowering vulnerable local communities for sustainable development’, which is funded by Action Aid India.
National Career Services (NCS) and Jeevan Praman Facility for EPFO Pensioners Launched in Hyderabad Post Office
i. The Union Minister of State for Labour and Employment Bandaru Dattatreya launched the National Career Service (NCS) for youths and Jeevan Praman facility to EPFO pensioners through Post Offices at DakSadan in Hyderabad on February 12, 2017.
ii. The Post Offices will serve as an Employment Registration Centres for Unemployed rural youth on behalf of the “National Career Service” Portal where youths can register themselves for employment in 1,55,000 post offices established across the country for over 3000 occupations offered under 52 sectors in NCS
iii. It would build a bridge between the net connected urban areas and non connected rural areas and help the youth to avail facility to register for employment at their doorstep hassle-free and have access to a rich repository of career content.
iv. The centre aims to provide employment to five crore people over next five years.
v. Besides, the EPFO pensioners can also submit their Digital Life Certificate (Jeevan Praman) through the Head Post Offices. This will also benefit the EPFO pensioners to avail the facility at their doorstep.
MEA & Gateway House Co-Hosts 2nd Gateway of India Geoeconomic Dialogue
i .The Ministry of External Affairs and Gateway House are co-hosting the Second Gateway of India Geoeconomic Dialogue from February 13-14, 2017 in Mumbai.
ii. The theme of the conference is “Where Geopolitics meets Business”.
iii. This is India’s premier geo-economics conference with the focus on building synergies between business and foreign policy
iv .The conference will have various several panel discussions on topics like Sovereign Funds, Global Taxation, Digital Economy, Indo-Pacific, India’s Defence-Industrial Base etc.
v. Important Ministers presents during the conclave includes M.J. Akbar, Minister of State for External Affairs, Ravi Shankar Prasad, Minister of Law and Justice & Minister of Electronics and Information, Md. Shahriar Alam, State Minister, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Bangladesh, Yves Leterme, former Prime Minister of Belgium, and Secretary General, International IDEA, Dr. S. Jaishankar, Foreign Secretary, Piyush Goyal, Minister of Power.