Govt of India approves Rs 445 Crore for implementation of Jal Jeevan Mission in Chhattisgarh during 2020-21 [29 May 2020]
Chhattisgarh State presented their Annual Action Plan for 2020-21 for consideration and approval of Ministry of Jal Shakti. Significantly, Jal Jeevan Mission launched under the Ministry of Jal Shakti is aimed to provide adequate potable drinking water of prescribed quality on regular and long-term basis to every rural household of the country by the 2024. A budget of whopping Rs 3.60 lakh Crore has been allocated for this scheme. Under this life changing Mission, Chhattisgarh State has planned to have 100% Functional Tap Water Connection (FHTC) by 2023-24. Out of 45 lakh households in the State, it’s planned to provide tap connections to 20 lakh households. While planning for universal coverage of households, priority is being given to water scarce areas, quality-affected areas, SC/ ST dominated habitations/ villages, aspirational districts, Sansad Adarsh Gramin Yojana villages. Govt of India has approved Rs 445 Crore for implementation of Jal Jeevan Mission in the State in 2020-21.
CIPET renamed as Central Institute of Petrochemicals Engineering &Technology [28 May 2020]
Central Institute of Plastics Engineering & Technology (CIPET) has been renamed as Central Institute of Petrochemicals Engineering & Technology (CIPET), a premier national institution under the Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers, Govt. of India. The primary objective of CIPET has been contributing towards the growth of the plastics industry through a combined program of education and research. The Institute has evolved through the years, creating closer ties with industries with the intent to create innovative plastic based solutions which are resource efficient and marketable.
NTPC in pact with ONGC to set up Joint Venture Company for Renewable Energy Business [22 May 2020]
NTPC Ltd. , the PSU under Ministry of Power and Oil and Natural Gas Corporation Limited (ONGC), the PSU under Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas, have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to set up a Joint Venture Company for Renewable Energy business. The MoU will enable both companies to accelerate their footprint in Renewable Energy. The MoU was signed by Shri A K Gupta, Director (Commercial) NTPC and Shri Subhash Kumar, Director (Finance) and In-charge Business Development and Joint Venture, ONGC. The MoU signing activity has been done on Virtual conferencing mode in the august presence of Shri Gurdeep Singh, CMD NTPC and Shri Shashi Shanker, CMD ONGC along with the other Directors and officials of both the companies. As per the MoU, NTPC and ONGC will explore the setting up of offshore wind and other Renewable Energy Projects in India and overseas. They shall also explore opportunities in the fields of sustainability, storage, E-mobility and ESG (Environmental, Social and Governance) compliant projects.
IASST develops electrochemical sensing platform for detecting carcinogenic & mutagenic compounds in food [22 May 2020]
Institute of Advanced Study in Science and Technology (IASST), Guwahati, has developed an electrochemical sensing platform for detecting carcinogenic or mutagenic compound N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA) and N-nitrosodiethanolamine (NDEA) sometimes found in food items like cured meat, bacon, some cheese, and low-fat milk. It was achieved by developing a modified electrode by immobilizing carbon nanomaterials (carbon dots) in DNA. The scientists pointed out that with changing food habits of urban Indians, they are exposed to harmful chemicals belonging to Nitrosamine family in cured meats, bacon, some cheese, low-fat dry milk, and fish. Such chemicals include carcinogenic ones like NDMA and NDEA, which may also alter the chemical composition of our DNA. Hence it is important to develop detection techniques to detect them.
Dr. Harsh Vardhan elected as Chair of Executive Board of WHO [22 May 2020]
The Union Minister of Health & Family Welfare Dr. Harsh Vardhan has been elected as Chair of the Executive Board of World Health Organization for the year 2020-21. This took place during the 147th session of the Executive Board, in a meeting that was virtually held. He has replaced Dr Hiroki Nakatani of Japan. Accepting the Chair of the Executive Board, Dr Harsh Vardhan paid tribute to the lakhs of people who have lost their lives due to the global COVID-19 pandemic.He requested all dignitaries present on the ocassion to give a standing ovation to all the frontline health workers and other COVID Warriors by saluting their dignity, determination and dedication.
Dr Harsh Vardhan participated in the 73rd World Health Assembly [18 May 2020]
Dr. Harsh Vardhan, Union Minister of Health & Family Welfare participated in the 73rd World Health Assembly (WHA) through Video Conference.
$1 Billion from World Bank to Protect India’s Poorest from COVID-19 [15 May 2020]
The Government of India and the World Bank today signed a $750 million of $1 billion proposed for Accelerating India’s COVID-19 Social Protection Response Programme to support India’s efforts at providing social assistance to the poor and vulnerable households, severely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. This takes the total commitment from the Bank towards emergency COVID-19 response in India to $2 billion. A $1 billion support was announced last month towards immediate support to India’s health sector. This new support will be funded in two phases – an immediate allocation of $750 million for fiscal year 2020 and a $250 million second tranche that will be made available for fiscal year 2021.
JNCASR scientists develop injectable Silk Fibroin-based hydrogel for sustained Insulin delivery in diabetic patients [15 May 2020]
Scientists at Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research (JNCASR), an autonomous research institute under the Department of Science and Technology, have recently developed an injectable Silk fibroin-based hydrogel for sustained insulin delivery in diabetic patients. A patent application has also been filed for this invention. Prof. T. Govindaraju and his research team from JNCASR have developed the silk fibroin (SF) formulation using biocompatible additives and prepared an injectable SF hydrogel (iSFH) that can ease insulin delivery in diabetic patients. The iSFH has demonstrated successful delivery of active insulin in rats, and the results have been published in the journal ACS Applied Bio Materials. The JNCASR scientists have shown that subcutaneous injection of insulin with-iSFH in diabetic rats formed active depot under the skin from which insulin trickled out slowly and restored the physiological glucose homeostasis for a prolonged period of 4 days with no risks of low blood sugar through sudden burst of high concentration of insulin into the blood.
DST INSPIRE Faculty from Bhopal develops lightweight carbon foam that can replace lead batteries [15 May 2020]
Dr. Rajeev Kumar from CSIR-Advanced Materials and Processes Research Institute, Bhopal, a recipient of the INSPIRE Faculty award instituted by the Department of Science &Technology, Govt. of India, is developing porous carbon materials which have the potential to replace lead grid in lead-acid batteries. It can also be useful for heat sinks in power electronics, electromagnetic interference shielding in aerospace, hydrogen storage and electrode for lead-acid batteries and water purification systems.
International Nurses Day observed [12 May 2020]
The International Nurses Day has been obsearved, which also marks the 200th anniversary of the birth of Florence Nightingale. This year is also significant as World Health Organization (WHO) has declared it as the ‘Year of the Nurse and the Midwife’.