Gujarat government has announced its new industrial policy for 2015. It was announced by Gujarat Chief Minister Anandiben Patel ahead of the Vibrant Gujarat Summit which begins from January 11, 2015. This industrial policy aims to make state a global manufacturing hub by playing a pivotal role in realising Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ‘Make in India’ dream.
This policy will focus on key areas like infrastructure development, simplification of labour laws and motivation of new innovations through technology transfer. It seeks to cater and provide opportunities to around 60 per cent of Gujarat’s population which is between the age group of 15 years and 59 years. It aims to create a business friendly environment and motivate ‘start-ups’ through this new policy. It will prepare these people to start their own businesses instead of merely looking for job opportunities. Besides, it will also give special focus on incentives for youth, women, scheduled castes, scheduled tribes and handicapped entrepreneurs. It will also provide assistance to micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) sector for upgrading technology. It focuses to reduce pollution by promoting use of clean and green energy as well as setting up zero-effluent discharge plants. This policy seeks to boost value addition in these existing resources, which will create new jobs and reduce imports as industries like auto components, engineering, drugs, cement and chemicals already have flourished in state. Special incentives will be given to set up new businesses in sectors like garments, apparel, agro and food processing.
French economist Thomas Piketty has turned down France’s top award, the Legion D’Honneur. He is the bestselling author of book Capital in the 21st Century which examines income inequality in society. Earlier in 2014, cartoonist Jacques Tardi had turned down this award. Others who have refused this award include philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre and radiology pioneers Pierre and Marie Curie. Officier de la Legion d’Honneur (Officer of the Legion of Honour) is the highest award among Civilians and Military conferred by France upon French citizen as well as foreigners.
IAS officer R K Srivastava took over as the new chairman of Airports Authority of India (AAI). Earlier in December, Srivastava was appointed as chairman of AAI by the government for 5 years. He is a 1984-batch Jharkhand-cadre IAS officer and has replaced Sudheer Raheja who was charge of the post since late August 2014.
AAI is statutory body under the aegis of Ministry of Civil Aviation. It is responsible for creating, upgrading, maintaining and managing civil aviation infrastructure in India. It also provides Air traffic management (ATM) services over Indian airspace and adjoining oceanic areas. AAI manages around 125 airports in India, which include 18 International Airport, 07 Customs Airports, 78 Domestic Airports and 26 Civil Enclaves at Defense airfields.
Greece’s Prime Minister Antonis Samaras has dissolved the country’s parliament ahead of snap elections to be held on 25 January. Dissolution of Parliament comes after it failed to elect the President in the third and final round of voting. In the third and final round for electing President, ruling government’s candidate Stavros Dimas (former European Commissioner) was defeated by 180 votes, resulting in dissolution of the Parliament. Prime Minister Antonis Samara’s ruling coalition government had came into power in 2012 after the General Elections. In 2012 General elections, Prime Minister Samaras-led New Democratic Party had won the elections and formed the government.
Central Government has appointed A.K. Mittal as Chairman of Railway Board. His name was cleared by the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC) headed by Prime Minister. He will succeed incumbent chief Arunendra Kumar whose term had ended on 31st December 2014.
He is an officer of the Indian Railway Stores Service of the 1976 batch. He has become first-ever officer from the Stores service to be Chairman of Railway Board. Before this appointment A.K. Mittal was Member Staff of Railway Board and ex-officio Secretary to the Government of India. He has also served as General Manager of South Western Railway (SWR). He also had held additional charge of General Manager, South Central Railway (SCR).
Former ISRO chief and renowned Scientist Dr. Vasant Ranchod Gowarikar passed away in Pune, Maharashtra. He was 81. He is considered as the ‘Father of the Indian Monsoon Model’.
Dr. Vasant Gowarikar was born in Pune on 25th March, 1933. He was renowned scientist and his significant contribution includes in field of space research, weather and population study and Polymer Chemistry. In 1965, Dr Gowarikar along with Vikram Sarabhai started working on satellite technology in the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research. Both of them played important role in laying foundation stone for India’s space technology and space programmes. He also headed Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO). On 17th April 1983, under his leadership Satellite launcher SLV-3 became successfully operational in orbit. He was the scientific advisor to late Prime Minister P.V. Narasimha Rao from 1991 to 1993. For some time, he was Vice Chancellor of Pune University. He was also chairman of Marathi Vidnyan Parishad from 1994 to 2000.
Many books and scientific essays are credited to his name. His book ‘I Predict’, an essay on the Indian population, has become famous.
He was honoured with the Padmashree Award, Padma Bhushan (2008), Fie Foundation Award, Nayak Gold Medal and Doctorates from many prestigious universities.
Dr. Gowarikar, along with his associates in 2008 had compiled the massive The Fertilizer Encyclopedia that featured 4,500 entries of chemical composition of fertilizers. It contains collection of information related to fertilizers consisting of their manufacturing, application and environmental considerations.
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