Monday, January 18, 2016

Modi’s honeymooning with Russia : Druzhba-Dosti to promote Make-in-India
By ASHOK B SHARMA
India’s time-tested friend Russia has come forward to be a partner in the ambitious Make-in-India initiative in sectors like defence manufacturing, nuclear power, solar energy, heavy engineering and railways. Defence is a critical sector for cooperation between the two countries. Moscow still remains as a major supplier of defence platforms and equipment even though India has made a conscious effort to diversify its import basket for new technology transfer and has inched towards US. Druzhba-Dosti has placed the relationship between the two countries on a firm footing, particularly in matters relating to defence and security despite resentments in the country on account of Russia supplying fighter jet engines to Pakistan.
Over the years it was a seller-buyer relationship. Now with the launch of the Make-in-India initiative in September 2014, greater emphasis is given to the manufacture of products in the country with adequate transfer of technology. To facilitate the implementation of the initiative the norms for attracting foreign direct investments (FDIs) in various sectors have been liberalized and ceilings have been raised. In defence sector the cap on FDI has been raised from 26% to 49% and for allowing FDIs above 49%, it would be considered on case-by-case basis keeping in view the need for technology transfer.
During his recent visit to Russia towards the end of the last year, Prime Minister Narendrabhai Damodardass Modi made a deliberate push for his Make-in-India initiative in the defence sector. An agreement was signed for manufacture of Kamov 226 helicopter in India which according to him would be “the first project for a major defence platform under the Make-in-India mission.”
“We have made progress on a number of other defence proposals. These would boost defence manufacturing in India and India’s defence readiness with next generation equipment,” he said.
Under the strategic relationship between the two countries that was elevated to Special and Privileged Strategic Partnership during the visit of President Vladimir Putin to India in December 2014, the India-Russia Inter-Governmental Commission on Military-Technical Cooperation, thereafter met twice in 2015 – in January in New Delhi and in November in Moscow – prior to Modi’s recent visit to Russia. In the fourteenth and the fifteenth meetings of IRIGC-MTC both sides reaffirmed their intention to expand the scope of cooperation and to avail of the opportunities provided by the Make-in-India initiative. IRIGC-MTC is co-chaired by the defence ministers of both the countries.
According to the joint statement signed during Modi’s recent visit to Moscow under the caption – “Shared Trust, New Horizons” – both sides reviewed the achievements in the field of joint design, development and production of high-technology military equipment. They directed the concerned agencies to finalize such projects between relevant entities and enterprises of the two countries at the earliest.
In the 14th IRIGC-MTC held in New Delhi in January 2015, it was agreed to speed up the work on co-development of the fifth generation fighter jet. According to a Russian-Indian joint venture in charge of the project the engineers of both the countries had then completed a preliminary design for the Sukhoi/HAL Fifth Generation Fighter Aircraft (FGFA).
The Indian Defense Minister Manohar Parrikar invited Russian companies to come over to India for other joint projects, specifically the production of spare parts for Russia-made military equipment on the Indian soil. Indian army had a “substantial” amount of Russian and erstwhile Soviet Union military equipment in service, including heavy artillery and armoured vehicles.
In the 15th IRIGC-MTC held in Moscow prior to Modi’s visit to the city in December 24, 2015, Parrikar and his Sergei Shoigu counterpart signed a new protocol aimed at developing bilateral Russian-Indian relations in the military-technical field. Recently India’s Defence Acquisition Council has approved the purchase of Russian S-400 Triumf air missile defence system. The 10-year lease of a nuclear submarine is under consideration.
The Druzhba-Dosti joint statement signed during President Putin’s visit to India in December 2014 has begun fructifying. The Make-in-India initiative is not only limited to the defence sector, but will be extended to nuclear power plants being built with Russian assistance. During Modi’s Russia visit an agreement was signed between the Department of Atomic Energy of India and the Russian State Energy Corporation “Rosatom” for localization of manufacturing in India for Russian-designed nuclear reactor units in the country. Three new joint working groups, namely on nuclear fuel, science and technology and nuclear power have been set following President Putin’s visit to India in 2014. Already there is a roadmap for setting up of 12 nuclear power reactors. Kudankulam nuclear power unit 1 of 1000 MW capacity is operational. It was re-started after some problems. Unit 2 is yet to be operationalised and construction works for unit 3 and 4 are scheduled to begin
The units 1, 2, 3 and 4 are part of “strategic vision” between India and Russia under which 12 nuclear power plants, each of 1000MW, would be built in batches of two and made operational over the next 20 years in Kudankulam in Tamil Nadu. Russia has also supportive of India’s early accession to export control regimes – Missile Technology Control Regime, Nuclear Suppliers’ Group, Wassenaar Arrangement.
Again in the area of renewable energy sector, a MoU has been signed between Solar Energy Corporation of India and Russian Energy Agency for construction of solar energy plants in the country. In the area of heavy engineering, a MoU has been signed with CNIITMASH of Russia for upgradation and modernization of Heavy Engineering Corporation (HEC) that was set with the help of erstwhile Soviet Union years ago. Also a Centre of Excellence for heavy engineering design would be set up at HEC. A MoU has been signed between Indian Ministry of Railways and the joint stock company – Russian Railways on technical cooperation. All these are a push for Modi’s Make-in-India initiative.
Cooperation space sector also holds out opportunities for promoting Make-in-India initiative. The first Indian satellite was launched using Soviet carrier launch vehicle about 40 years ago. A MoU has been signed between Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) and the Federal Space Agency of Russia in June 2015 on expanding cooperation in exploration and use of outer space for peaceful purposes. The joint statement has identified areas like rocket and engine engineering, development of spacecraft including microsatellites, earth remote sensing and space meteorology, satellite navigation and related technologies and services as well as space science.
Direct sale of rough diamonds to India initiated during President Putin’s visit to India in 2014 has helped the processing industry in India to export polished diamonds. Indian companies have signed up long-term rough diamonds supply contracts with PJSC ALROSA, bypassing the global diamond exchange. This has helped the Indian companies to source rough diamonds at cheaper prices. A Special Notified Zone has been set up at Bharat Diamond Bourse. Prime Minister Modi has remarked : “Following our last Summit, India has created a special notified zone to facilitate direct trade between the world’s largest uncut diamond exporter, Russia and India which processes 90% of the world’s uncut diamond.”
Russia is rich in hydrocarbons and recently the OVL has picked by 15% stake in the second largest oil field in Russia, Rosnett Vankorneft Oil Field and discussions are on for further stake in future. Moscow supplies LNG to India and a joint study group is considering the possibility of a hydrocarbon pipeline system between the two countries. The work on the proposed International North-South Transit Corridor (INSTC) is gathering pace with several meetings at the level of experts, stakeholders and INSTC Council. The INSTC through Iran is slated to reduce transportation time and cost and will connect Russia, Central Asia and South Asia. Custom authorities of Russia and India have planned to implement Green Corridor mechanism. India is also negotiating for a free trade agreement with the Eurasian Union. With such proposals in place New Delhi expects to increase its bilateral trade with Russia from a shade below $10 billion to $30 billion in the next 10 years and also give a boost to Make-in-India initiative at home.
(Ashok B Sharma is a senior Columnist writing on strategic and policy issues in several Indian and international newspapers and magazines. He frequently writes in The Daily Observer, Bangladesh and The Diplomatist magazine. E-mail :ashokbsharma@gmail.com Mobile phone no +91-9810902204)
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CHIEF OF ARMY STAFF ENTHRALLED BY NCC CADETS

Caption_2


Chief of Army Staff General Dalbir Singh, PVSM, UYSM, AVSM, VSM, ADC visited the NCC Republic Day Parade Camp 2016 at the DGNCC Camp on 18 Jan 2016. On arrival, the General was received by the DGNCC, Lieutenant General Aniruddha Chakravarty, VSM.

A contingent of all the three wings namely Army, Navy, Air Force and girl cadets presented an impressive “Guard of Honour” to the Chief of Army Staff on his arrival.

NCC cadets thereafter presented a fine band display. The COAS also visited the ‘Flag Area’ prepared by the NCC cadets depicting various social awareness themes where the young boy and girl cadets briefed him.

The versatile NCC cadets then presented a spectacular Cultural Programme in the NCC auditorium comprising group dances and ballet showcasing the rich cultural heritage of our nation.

The Chief of Army Staff complimented the NCC for its excellent performance in the last one year. Congratulating the cadets for their captivating cultural programme and soldierly alertness, the General Officer lauded the stellar role played by this premier youth organization that enables through its motto of ‘Unity and Discipline”, the youth to shoulder the responsibilities of building a strong Nation.
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ICC MEDIA RELEASE
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
New Delhi, 18 January 2016

ICC launches Cricket for Good & Team Swachh campaign in partnership with UNICEF and BCCI

  • David Richardson says ICC is committed to working with UNICEF on initiatives that will improve the health, education, nutrition, protection and sanitation of children

  • Sachin Tendulkar says ending open defecation-achieving sanitation for all in India will take a genuine team effort in which all relevant actors will have to play together as one team

  • Karin Hulshof: “At UNICEF, we are thrilled that the ICC is teaming up with us to transform the lives and futures of children. Let us all get on the front foot and create a big win for children”

  • Anurag Thakur says BCCI is pleased to join hands with ICC, UNICEF and take forward the initiative of “Swachh Bharat” started by honourable India Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi

The International Cricket Council (ICC) has reaffirmed its commitment to the Spirit of Cricket and bringing about positive social change through the sport, by launching Cricket for Good, it’s CSR Programme, in association with UNICEF.

Team Swachh is the first of a series of collaborations between the ICC and UNICEF under the aegis of Cricket for Goodwith the aim of leveraging the vast reach and power of cricket. This visionary collaboration aims to build a social movement for sanitation and toilet use, thereby leading to an open defecation-free India.

The five-year global partnership was announced in October 2015 in New York and will be used as the ICC’s platform to advocate for children in India and other countries where cricket is a popular sport.

Speaking at the launch, ICC Chief Executive, David Richardson said. “We are committed to working with UNICEF oninitiatives that will improve the health, education, nutrition, protection and sanitation of children, which are causes so critical to us all.

“ICC and UNICEF together will engage the broader cricketing community to empower children and adolescents and will, in particular, during the many ICC events over the next five years, develop and implement various community outreach programs and initiatives in collaboration with coaches, cricketers and cricketing personalities.

“Building up to the ICC World Twenty20 India 2016, there will be an eight host city tour starting next month that will use exciting cricket-based sanitation and hygiene games to engage with school children. During the event itself, there will be coaching clinics with participating teams.”

The initial focus of the collaboration in India will be to improve sanitation. With the largest number of people still defecating in the open – more than 564 million – poor sanitation can cause diarrhoea, which accounts for more than 300 deaths in children under five years every day in India. This partnership will strengthen the Team Swachhcampaign conceptualised by the UNICEF-WASH United alliance.

And this is where Team Swachh will swiftly move into action, to try and make a difference, and help inspire people to initiate a change at the ground level, to make the journey from apathy to concern and taking action. It will endeavor to cut across urban and rural populations, class, gender, age, region and religion to help make India a clean nation where everyone uses a toilet.

The idea of team and team play is at the core of the Team Swachh initiative. And it starts with the power of cricket teams and the ICC World Twenty20 India 2016. For the event teams and any other team to be successful, all the different members – different players, coaches, doctors, etc. have to work together to achieve their goal.

Cricket icon Sachin Tendulkar, a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador, remarked. “Similarly, ending open defecation-achieving sanitation for all in India, takes a genuine team effort in which all relevant actors – from the Government of India to people practicing open defecation, from role models to international development partners – play together as one team.”

The Secretary of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), Anurag Thakur, commented: “Team Swachh presents a creative and collaborative platform to make the nationwide movement a resounding success. The ICC World Twenty20 India 2016 will bring together the collective efforts of the BCCI, ICC and UNICEF towards the mission with the help of awareness programmes.

“I’m sure that the coaching clinics, which will see active participation from the leading cricketers of the world, will inspire and encourage my fellow Indian citizens to contribute to this wonderful initiative.”

UNICEF Regional Director for South Asia, Karin Hulshof, said: “UNICEF hopes to harness the reach and power of cricket, one of the world’s most popular sports, towards the most important cause of all: saving the lives and futures of children.”

Team Swachh action kit, featuring a unique cricket and game-based tool-kit for WASH (Water Sanitation & Hygiene) in schools was also launched during the event. The kit contains a set of exciting cricket-themed WASH games, along with an implementation handbook and Team Swachh campaign materials featuring the Team Swachh cricket star ambassadors.

And to kick-start the programme, Tendulkar picked up the bat once again and played a game with children of a local non-governmental organization (NGO), Nine is Mine. The master batsman then took time to discuss sanitation with the kids, and shared ideas and thoughts on how they could spread the message of ending open defecation among their peers.

0











ICC MEDIA RELEASE
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
New Delhi, 18 January 2016

ICC launches Cricket for Good & Team Swachh campaign in partnership with UNICEF and BCCI

  • David Richardson says ICC is committed to working with UNICEF on initiatives that will improve the health, education, nutrition, protection and sanitation of children

  • Sachin Tendulkar says ending open defecation-achieving sanitation for all in India will take a genuine team effort in which all relevant actors will have to play together as one team

  • Karin Hulshof: “At UNICEF, we are thrilled that the ICC is teaming up with us to transform the lives and futures of children. Let us all get on the front foot and create a big win for children”

  • Anurag Thakur says BCCI is pleased to join hands with ICC, UNICEF and take forward the initiative of “Swachh Bharat” started by honourable India Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi

The International Cricket Council (ICC) has reaffirmed its commitment to the Spirit of Cricket and bringing about positive social change through the sport, by launching Cricket for Good, it’s CSR Programme, in association with UNICEF.

Team Swachh is the first of a series of collaborations between the ICC and UNICEF under the aegis of Cricket for Goodwith the aim of leveraging the vast reach and power of cricket. This visionary collaboration aims to build a social movement for sanitation and toilet use, thereby leading to an open defecation-free India.

The five-year global partnership was announced in October 2015 in New York and will be used as the ICC’s platform to advocate for children in India and other countries where cricket is a popular sport.

Speaking at the launch, ICC Chief Executive, David Richardson said. “We are committed to working with UNICEF oninitiatives that will improve the health, education, nutrition, protection and sanitation of children, which are causes so critical to us all.

“ICC and UNICEF together will engage the broader cricketing community to empower children and adolescents and will, in particular, during the many ICC events over the next five years, develop and implement various community outreach programs and initiatives in collaboration with coaches, cricketers and cricketing personalities.

“Building up to the ICC World Twenty20 India 2016, there will be an eight host city tour starting next month that will use exciting cricket-based sanitation and hygiene games to engage with school children. During the event itself, there will be coaching clinics with participating teams.”

The initial focus of the collaboration in India will be to improve sanitation. With the largest number of people still defecating in the open – more than 564 million – poor sanitation can cause diarrhoea, which accounts for more than 300 deaths in children under five years every day in India. This partnership will strengthen the Team Swachhcampaign conceptualised by the UNICEF-WASH United alliance.

And this is where Team Swachh will swiftly move into action, to try and make a difference, and help inspire people to initiate a change at the ground level, to make the journey from apathy to concern and taking action. It will endeavor to cut across urban and rural populations, class, gender, age, region and religion to help make India a clean nation where everyone uses a toilet.

The idea of team and team play is at the core of the Team Swachh initiative. And it starts with the power of cricket teams and the ICC World Twenty20 India 2016. For the event teams and any other team to be successful, all the different members – different players, coaches, doctors, etc. have to work together to achieve their goal.

Cricket icon Sachin Tendulkar, a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador, remarked. “Similarly, ending open defecation-achieving sanitation for all in India, takes a genuine team effort in which all relevant actors – from the Government of India to people practicing open defecation, from role models to international development partners – play together as one team.”

The Secretary of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), Anurag Thakur, commented: “Team Swachh presents a creative and collaborative platform to make the nationwide movement a resounding success. The ICC World Twenty20 India 2016 will bring together the collective efforts of the BCCI, ICC and UNICEF towards the mission with the help of awareness programmes.

“I’m sure that the coaching clinics, which will see active participation from the leading cricketers of the world, will inspire and encourage my fellow Indian citizens to contribute to this wonderful initiative.”

UNICEF Regional Director for South Asia, Karin Hulshof, said: “UNICEF hopes to harness the reach and power of cricket, one of the world’s most popular sports, towards the most important cause of all: saving the lives and futures of children.”

Team Swachh action kit, featuring a unique cricket and game-based tool-kit for WASH (Water Sanitation & Hygiene) in schools was also launched during the event. The kit contains a set of exciting cricket-themed WASH games, along with an implementation handbook and Team Swachh campaign materials featuring the Team Swachh cricket star ambassadors.

And to kick-start the programme, Tendulkar picked up the bat once again and played a game with children of a local non-governmental organization (NGO), Nine is Mine. The master batsman then took time to discuss sanitation with the kids, and shared ideas and thoughts on how they could spread the message of ending open defecation among their peers.

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The Naresh Kumar Sagar Daily
Published by
Naresh Kumar Sagar
18 January 2016
World Sports Business Leisure Art & EntertainmentScience #thisisthenhs #iran
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Australian Open 2016: Djokovic elaborates on match-fixing approach, believes sport is clean
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