Monday, September 18, 2017


Seminar on
                                                       Investment Opportunities in Special Economic Zone, Duqm Port, Oman
28th Sept 2017: Hotel Leela Palace, Chankayapuri, New Delhi

Dear Sir/Madam,

I have pleasure in inviting you to the seminar being co-organized by Duqm SEZ, ASSOCHAM and FICCI with the support of Ministry of External Affairs, Govt of India to promote Indian companies set up businesses in Duqm Port. Schedule of the seminar is as follows:

Day / Date :    Thrusday, 28th September 2017
Venue         :    Hotel Leela Palace, Chankyapuri, New Delhi
The Sultanate of Oman is a strategic partner for India in the Gulf region and the government of Oman is very keen to have companies from India set up business in Duqm SEZ. The Government of Oman has giving highest priority to attract Indian companies in Special Economic Zones created in proximity to Ports of Salalah, Sohar and Duqm in the Eastern part of Oman. Around two dozen Indian companies have already invested in the zones adjacent to Salalah and Sohar ports.

The Zone offers an attractive package of investment incentives and tax cuts that aim at enhancing the business environment for the private sector and improve its competitive standing which includes:

  • Easy and facilitated access to land based on long term leases and reduced rates.
  • Removal of any restrictions on foreign ownership and minimum investment capital; waiver/reduction of corporate tax and customs duties.
  • This is in addition to nationally applicable incentives such as the waiver of personal income tax, convertibility of currency, and the full repatriation of investment capital and profits.

We feel investments by Indian companies in Oman open up job opportunities for Indian professionals and workers, as Indian companies investing in Oman invariably prefer to employ Indians at various levels of management and operations. They also tend to import equipment and supplies from India.

Given your interest in the region, we take pleasure in inviting you to participate in this seminar. May I request you to please send in your confirmation to my colleague Mr. Anurag Sharma at E: , T: 011-46550539, latest by Sept 25, 2017.
I look forward to your active participation in the seminar.
With regards
Deepti Pant (Ms.)
Additional Director- International Affairs
Edit"Investment Opportunities in Special Economic Zone, Duqm Port, Oman"


I am writing to invite you to the fourth seminar on “Realising Poorna Swaraj through Entrepreneurship” on 5th October 2017 from 6:00 – 8:00 PM at Seminar Hall 2, Kamaladevi Complex, India International Centre, Max Mueller Marg in New Delhi. The Registrations & Hi-Tea will be from 6:00-6:30 PM followed by the seminar.
This year, as we celebrate Gandhi Jayanti, the context of “Startup India” and “Make In India” emerge aptly to the foreground. How are we, as fellow citizens of this country, enabling complete economic freedom through self-reliance for those in India’s Tier II towns and rural areas? After all, 60% of India’s population resides in them.
Helping rural industries grow and develop, therefore, directly facilitates self-employment, resulting in more economic and industrial activity within rural areas. It also helps utilise locally available resources and labour more effectively. But due to limitations pertaining to land and seasonality, many agricultural outliers migrate to the closest towns and cities for a regular source of livelihood. India’s towns are, in turn, becoming stepping stones for budding entrepreneurs. In fact, they are abuzz with entrepreneurial activity.
But entrepreneurs of small-town- as well as rural enterprises face a few key problems in their ventures:
  1. Access to Finance: Working capital for raw materials, production trials, quality improvements, etc. is a major challenge. The entrepreneurs may exhaust their own monetary resources at an early stage and may not know which source to tap for further funds, and how to use them judicially.

  1. Policy Changes: Changing policies also pose a challenge for rural and small-town entrepreneurs as they often come to know about new developments later than their urban compatriots or information about compliance is not easily accessible.

  1. Education and Cultural Preparedness: In addition, marketing, management (legalities, procurement, etc.), and human resource issues (low skill levels of labour, retaining good talent, and unfavourable opinion about entrepreneurship).
The fourth session of the Ananta-IEF Entrepreneurship series discusses how everyone – whether at the level of policy creation, among corporations, as torch-bearers of community creation, individual entrepreneurs, and media – can reignite this spark of self-reliance in India’s entrepreneurship ecosystem, and help achieve Bapu’s dream of Poorna Swaraj.
Invited panelists include experts from the entrepreneurship ecosystem in India.
We will be glad if you could join us or nominate your colleagues for this interactive seminar on 5thOctober 2017. We shall share the speaker bios and the agenda for the Seminar with you closer to the date after your confirmation.
Best Regards,
Ananta Aspen Centre
Edit"“Realising Poorna Swaraj through Entrepreneurship” o"


Peruvian President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski appointed a former Economy Minister as his new Prime Minister today, two days after a no-confidence vote by the opposition-led congress forced the entire Cabinet to resign. Mercedes Araoz, who is also a lawmaker and one of Peru’s two Vice Presidents, is the new Chief Minister in a reconstituted Cabinet. She served as economy minister during part of the 2006-11 administration of President Alan Garcia.
Araoz replaced Fernando Zavala, who lost Friday’s vote of confidence by lawmakers. The single-house congress is led by the opposition party of Keiko Fujimori, who is the daughter of jailed former President Alberto Fujimori and loser of a close 2016 presidential runoff election to Kuczynski.
All 19 ministers in the previous Cabinet were forced to resign under Peru’s constitution because of the no-confidence vote. Kuczynski reappointed six of the 19 ministers in the previous Cabinet.
Edit"Peruvian President appoints new PM"


Arjan Singh’s son,  Arvind Singh on his father Marshal Arjan Singh last rites said, He was a great man but never acted great, was very humble. He was destined for greatness.ANI
The mortal remains of Marshal of Indian Air Force Arjan Singh was consigned to flames in New Delhi a short while ago. He was accorded 17 Gun salute and a fly past before the final rites. Marshal Arjan Singh was accorded a state funeral. His mortal remains were taken to the funeral site from his residence Kautilya Marg in a gun carriage procession.
Marshal Arjan Singh passed away in New Delhi on Saturday evening. 98-year old Singh had been admitted to Army’s RR Hospital following a heart attack.
President Ram Nath Kovind, Vice President M Vankaiah Naidu and Prime Minister Narendra Modi paid tribute to legendary soldier at his residence. Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, former Prime minister Dr Manmohan Singh and BJP veteran Lal Krishna Advani were present at the funeral.
Edit"Mortal remains of Marshal Arjan Singh consigned to flames"


Key messages on SBM for the media Round Table on 18 September 2017 (UNICEF)
Good morning to everyone present here and especially to our media friends.
This is an important day as we are collected to discuss the very important issue of Sanitation and Hygiene. I will begin with the evidence that we have on the impact due to a lack of proper sanitation and hygiene, and how until just three years ago, India used to pay a huge price because of poor sanitation.
At the early stage of the SBM, in 2015, we estimate that there was around half a billion people defecating in the open.
Lack of hygiene and sanitation contributes to spreading fecally transmitted infections; this is not only diarrhoea, it is also worms, helminths, and other intestinal parasites. This is mainly due to widespread open defecation practice. This lack of hygiene and sanitation, particularly affects the poorest communities, and the most vulnerable children.
  • it is estimated that in 2015, 117,000 under five children died of diarrhoea alone (WHO – 2015); this is more than 13 children per hour; this is 22% of the global burden with regard to under 5 mortality due to diarrhoea.
  • Repeated FTIs damage the capacity of young children to absorb nutrients, for its entire life; because of this nutrition issue, children become stunted, this means that their body and brain do not develop normally. In India, 39% of children are stunted.
  • There are many other issues due to poor hygiene and sanitation. For instance, as a consequence of weak infection prevention and control in health care facilities, sepsis (common healthcare-acquired infection) is directly responsible for 11% of maternal and 15% of new-born mortality deaths in India
  • With regard to economic development, India is paying a heavy price because of these preventable water-borne diseases: a study from the World Bank published in 2008 shows that the total economic impacts of inadequate sanitation in India was amounting to US$53.8 billion per year, equivalent of 6.4 percent of India’s GDP at the same period.

And having seen how poor sanitation can affect the health and lives of children and communities, I know move to my next message of how a movement around sanitation and hygiene, in the country has been able to catalyse and mobilize the efforts of millions of citizens. The SBM, is a once-in-a generation opportunity
In UNICEF, having at heart the wellbeing of children, we advocate relentlessly in many countries of the world to obtain a slightly increased prioritization of the issue of open defecation in the agenda of governments.
In India, the leadership comes from the Prime Minister. The SBM has been able to create a ‘once-in-a-generation’ movement with the alignment of public sector interest, public budgets, and social awareness behind the formerly intractable problem of open defecation.
UNICEF has a permanent mission in 15 of the most populated states of India, and we see the SBM happening concretely on the ground.  Some key highlights I would like to share are as follows:
  • Beyond the hundreds of thousands of toilets being built, a genuine prioritization of behavior change interventions is taking place. With the support of UNICEF and other partners, Sanitation armies are being created in the field and their capacities for community mobilization are being built. This is a crucial shift form the hardware engineering to the social engineering to tackle the issue of open defecation, and we must make sure that this reacheds every corner of the country.
  • Behaviour change is a complex issue, particularly in India where open defecation is a deeply rooted habit for many households. Hence, this requires the mobilisation of the entire Indian Society, including the government, civil society, the private sector, the religious leaders, and the media who also have a critical role to play, to pass the message: use a toilet, WASH your hand with soap, to put pressure on performances and sustainable achievements, and also to shed the light on the unknown heroes on the ground who create Open Defecation Free villages, blocks and districts.
  • Another key differentiator is the focus on verification and sustainability. The government has instituted a multi-tier bottom-up verification system, with the support of UNICEF and other partners. They are also carrying out national third party surveys, household surveys to ensure that States are on their toes.
  • To date, Nearly 239,000 villages and 196 districts reported to be Open Defecation Free. This is an outstanding achievement. And the work does not end there. Government’s guidelines specifies that surveillance must continue after the verification of the ODF status to ensure sustainability. UNICEF will continue to focus its support on this specific issue to help sustain the new social norm of using a toilet for defecation.
Finally I would like to share with you the Findings from the costs and benefits Study of the SBM(G)
UNICEF just recently finalized an independent survey, across 10,000 rural households randomly selected in 12 states, to estimate the costs and benefits of the SBM(G)
This study showed that:
–       85% of the household members use their latrine to defecate
–       In a fully Open Defecation Free community,  considering medical costs averted, the value of time savings, and the value of mortality averted, the financial saving for each household is 50,000 Rs per year.
–       In terms of cost benefit ratio, considering in one hand the expenditures from the households and from the government, and in the other hand the financial savings induced by improved sanitation, the study found a cost-benefit ratio of 430% on average, this means that 1 Rs invested allows a saving of 4.3 Rs.
–       The benefits are highest for the poorest quintile of the population.
Hence these are very encouraging result just 3 years down the line of the implementation of the SBM.

Once again, I thank each and every one of the media partners present here and we value our association with you. We look forward to your support in covering these issues and catalysing this people’s movement of SBM even further.
This 15 day’s campaign is a great opportunity to galvanize this unique movment
Edit"Key messages on SBM for the media Round Table"


A strong storm killed eight people and injured at least 67 in western Romania on Sunday as winds of up to 100 kph (over 60 mph) also brought destruction to parts of Serbia and Croatia, officials said.
Road and rail traffic in parts of Romania was halted by fallen trees. Several hospitals, schools and apartment buildings had roofs damaged and dozens of towns and villages were left without electricity.
Some of the casualties were people strolling outside or coming out of supermarkets, the emergency services said. A group of tourists was stranded for an hour in a chairlift in the northern county of Maramures.
In Serbia, a man went missing on his boat on the Danube river near Belgrade and six people, including a five-year-old child, were injured by falling trees. Arcing from power lines, caused by the high winds, triggered several wildfires.
In Croatia, flooding brought traffic to a standstill in several coastal towns.
“We can’t fight the weather,” Romanian Prime Minister Mihai Tudose told Antena3 TV. “The entire medical sector is focused on the injured.”
He said the government would help support the communities hit by the storm.
Nicolae Robu, mayor of the Romanian city of Timisoara spoke to local TV station Digi24 as he was surveying the scene outside.
“There are dozens of trees on the ground, roads blocked, we are out of electricity and water. There are roofs torn off houses, apartment buildings. There are overturned trucks. I’ve never seen anything like this.”
Romania’s national weather agency has issued warnings of strong winds and rainstorms for western areas.
Emergency responders have urged people to take shelter indoors, unplug household appliances and park in areas not close to trees or power lines.
Edit"Storm kills eight in Romania, damage hits Serbia, Croatia"


Skirmish to sporadic clashes along the border of Ethiopia’s Oromiya and Somali regions are old tale this has led to displaced around 50,000 people, a senior regional official said on Sunday, in violence that has prompted the government to send the military in.
Spokesmen from the two regions told regional news outlets earlier this week that at least 50 people were killed. Each side blames the other.
“It is not just deaths that occurred. More than 50,000 people were displaced from their homes,” Lema Megersa — the president of Oromiya province — told local journalists on Sunday.
“Those responsible should also be held to account,” he added without providing the death toll.
The area has been plagued by sporadic clashes for decades. A referendum held in 2004 to determine the status of disputed settlements failed to ease tensions.
Unrest in 2015 and 2016 in Oromiya — and, to a lesser extent, other regions — killed 669 people, according to a parliament-mandated investigation.
The clashes are likely to fuel further fears about security in Ethiopia — the region’s biggest economy and a staunch Western ally.
Each side gave contradictory explanations about the cause of the clashes. Some officials in Oromiya said it was sparked by the killing of a local district head and raids by a paramilitary force from the Somali region.
Officials from the Somali region denied those claims. Fifty ethnic Somalis were killed in the town of Aweday in Oromiya on Tuesday, a spokesman for the Somali region told local media on Friday.
International media were not permitted at the briefing.
On Sunday, Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn said soldiers deployed to the region to quell the violence would disarm residents and safeguard highways straddling the regions.
Edit"Fifty killed in clashes in eastern Ethiopia & Somalia regions"


India’s exports have recorded a double digit growth of 10 point 29 per cent during August this year mainly on account of rise in shipments of chemicals, petroleum and engineering products.
According to the data released by the commerce ministry yesterday, India exported goods worth 23.81 billion US dollars in August this year against 21.59 billion dollars in the same period last year. Exports grew 8 percent in May and 4.39 percent in June this year.
The growth came even as exporters complained over the refund mechanism under GST, saying it is affceting outbound shipments. Imports also rose by 21.02 per cent to 35.46 billion dollars in August from 29.3 billion dollars in the corresponding period last year.
However, trade deficit widened to 11.64 billion dollars in the month under review from 7.7 billion dollars in August 2016, due to increase in gold imports that rose by about 69 per cent to 1.88 billion dollars last month.
Edit"India’s exports rise to 10.29 per cent in August"


Britain raised its threat level to maximum yesterday and announced troops will be deployed to key sites after a bomb detonated on a packed London Underground train, injuring at least 29 people.
The attack was claimed by the Islamic State terror group. The explosion — Britain’s fifth terror attack in six months — sparked a wall of fire that left passengers with burns and caused a stampede of panicking people in which some were trampled.
Twelve hours after the blast at Parsons Green station in southwest London, Prime Minister Theresa May announced the national threat level will be raised to critical, meaning another attack may be imminent. She said, military personnel will take over guard duty at certain closed protected sites, freeing up 1,000 police officers to be deployed on the transport network and on streets across Britain.
The country was last on critical alert after the bombing at a concert in Manchester in May, which was also claimed by the Islamic State terror group. No-one has yet been arrested over the bombing, but anti-terrorism police chief Mark Rowley said the investigation is making good progress.
The US remains committed to defeat terror organisations and their evil ideology. The strong reaction came from the White House after a terror attack in an underground train in London.
Addressing US Air Force on the occasion of its 70th anniversary, US President Trump said his hearts and prayers go out the people of London who suffered a vicious terrorist
attack. White House Press Secretary Sarah sanders said the US strongly condemns the cowardly terrorist attack in London.
Edit"Britain beef-up security radars"


The Group of Ministers working on resolving IT related issues pertaining to GST have appealed to the tax payers not to wait till last date to file their returns.
The Group headed by Bihar Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Modi to look into the technical issues faced by GST Network after its first meeting informed media persons in Begaluru today that GoM will meet every 15 days and resolve 80 per cent of the glitches by 30th of next month. He informed that 85 lakh dealers in the country have registered under GST and a time frame is fixed to resolve procedural issues in filing GST returns.
The group of Ministers has consulted IT solution vendors, tax consultants and experts, commercial tax officials, bankers and big companies to flag the issues coming in the way of smooth filing of GST returns.
A single portal created for the purpose is collecting data of 85 lakh dealers registered under GST. This is a huge task and portal is designed to handle this. However, GoM headed by Mr. Modi has said crowding will aggravate the issues and hence the dealers must not wait till the last date. He has informed that 47 lakh dealers had filed 3B summery returns in July and in August over 3 lakh dealers have filed summery returns.
Besides, Revenue Secretary Hasmukh Adhia, GSTN Chairman Ajay Bhushan Pandey and GSTN CEO Prakash Kumar attended the meet. The GST Council, the highest decision-making body of the new Goods and Services Tax regime, had on last Saturday decided to form a five-member panel to look into the technical glitches facing GST Network.
GSTN is the information technology backbone and portal for real-time taxpayer registration, migration, and tax return filing under GST. Kerala Finance Minister Thomas Isaac, Chhattisgarh Minister of Commercial Taxes Amar Agrawal, Karnataka Agriculture Minister Krishna Byre Gowda and Telangana Finance Minister Etela Rajender are other members of the GoM.
Edit"Technical glitches faced by GST Network"


Prime Minister Narendra Modi, will dedicate the Sardar Sarovar Dam to the nation, at Kevadia in Gujarat tomorrow. The height of the dam was recently raised to 138.68 metres, facilitating a usable storage of 4.73 Million Acre feet (MAF). This will greatly benefit the participating States of Gujarat, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra.
The project has helped transport the waters of the River Narmada, to the water-deficient areas of Gujarat through an elaborate canal and pipeline network. Irrigation from the project is expected to benefit about 10 lakh farmers, and drinking water to be supplied to various villages and towns, is likely to benefit upto 4 crore people.
The project has been described as one of largest ever human endeavours for water transport. Upto a billion units of hydropower are also expected to be generated annually.
From the dam site, the Prime Minister will travel to Sadhu Bet, where the Statue of Unity, an iconic statue and associated memorial complex for Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, is currently under construction. The Prime Minister will be given an overview of the progress of work on this project.
The project comprises a 182 metre tall statue, an exhibition hall, a memorial garden, and a Visitor Centre. (PMO) The Prime Minister will attend the closing ceremony of the Narmada Mahotsav, and address the gathering at Dabhoi. He will lay the foundation stone for the National Tribal Freedom Fighters’ Museum during the event.
The Prime Minister will later visit Amreli. He will inaugurate a new market yard of APMC. He will also inaugurate new plants of Amar Dairy, and lay the foundation stone of a honey production centre. He will address a Sahakar Sammelan at Amreli.
Edit"PM to dedicate Sardar Sarovar Dam to nation"


Teenager 18-year, was arrested by Kent Police in the port area of Dover this morning, Saturday, 16 September, under section 41 of the Terrorism Act,” police said in a statement.
“The man remains in custody at a local police station. He will be transferred to a south London police station in due course.
“We have made a significant arrest in our investigation this morning. Although we are pleased with the progress made, this investigation continues and the threat level remains at critical,” Deputy Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu, Senior National Coordinator for Counter Terrorism Policing, said. Further, Basu advised the public to “remain vigilant” and said their “complex investigation” into the attack is ongoing.“We are not, at this time, changing our protective security measures and the steps taken to free up extra armed officers remain in place,” he added.
The Islamic State group has said it was behind the bomb but Met Police’s Assistant Commissioner Mark Rowley said it was very routine for ISIS to claim the attack, whether in contact with those involved or not.
Prime Minister Theresa May announced the UK terrorism threat level was raised from ‘severe’ to ‘critical.’ ‘Critical’ is the highest threat level.
“Military personnel will replace police officers on guard duties at certain protected sites that are not accessible to the public,” May told media.
Media agencies
Edit"Parsons Green bomb attack the teenager arrested"


Iceland’s center-right govt collapses amid scandal.
Nine months old Iceland’s  center-right government collapsed Friday after a small coalition member quit and the country’s prime minister called for a new election ”as soon as possible,” according to Icelandic media.
The centrist Bright Future Party quit over an attempt by the prime minister’s father to help clear a convicted pedophile’s name. It said in a Facebook post that there was ”a serious breach of trust” behind its departure.
Prime Minister Bjarni Benediktsson took office in January with his Independence Party, the Reform Party and the centrists.
Conglomerate  of the three parties held the slimmest of majorities – 32 of the 63 seats in parliament following the Oct. 29 election, was called after the former prime minister resigned amid protests over his offshore holdings that were revealed in the Panama Papers leak. Media agencies
Edit"Iceland govt collapse under scandal"


Hon’ble Minister of State for Social Justice & Empowerment, Government of India, Shri Ramdas Athawale will visit Ahmedabad. He will participate in the inauguration of International Buddhist Conference at Mahatma Mandir, Gandhinagar. Before that he will address Press Conference at Circuit House Annexe, Ahmedabad.
The details are as under:
1. Press Conference :
Date: 17th September, 2017 (Sunday)
Time: 11:00 hrs.
Venue: Circuit House Annexe, Ahmedabad. 
       2. Inauguration of International Buddhist Conference
Date  : 17th September, 2017 (Sunday)
Time  : 12:30 hrs.
Venue:Mahatma Mandir, Gandhinagar, Gujarat

You are cordially invited to cover the seminar. Kindly make it convenient to send your reporter/correspondent/ photographer/ cameraperson for the same.
Navalsang Parmar
Dy. Director (M&C)
Press Information Bureau
Government of India

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