- Rs 338.95 cr to chhattisgarh under pmgsy in 2017-18 : centre
- The Central Government has provided a sum of Rs.338.95 crore to Chhattisgarh so far during the current financial year 2017-18 under Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY).
- The State of Chhattisgarh has reported to have constructed 81 roads measuring length 410.42 Km under New Connectivity and 2 roads measuring length 8.25 Km roads under upgradation till December, 2017, the Central Government has informed.
- The above funds have not been utilized for repairing the roads constructed earlier.
- As per PMGSY guidelines, maintenance of roads constructed under the programme is the responsibility of the State Governments and all road works are covered by initial five year maintenance contracts to be entered into along with the construction contract, with the same contractor, as per the Standard Bidding Document. Maintenance funds to service the contract are required to be budgeted by the State Governments and placed at the disposal of the State Rural Roads Development Agency (SRRDA) in a separate maintenance account.
- On expiry of this 5 year post construction maintenance, PMGSY roads are required to be placed under Zonal maintenance contracts consisting of 5 year maintenance including renewal as per cycle, from time to time. In the current financial year, the State credited Rs. 24 crore for routine maintenance of PMGSY roads constructed earlier, out of which an expenditure of Rs. 7.00 crore has been incurred till December, 2017.
- The State of Chhattisgarh has provided Rs.225.967 crore as State Share for the current financial year 2017-18 so far.
- In Chhattisgarh, Malkangiri district of Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana, LWE areas of Jharkhand, there is challenge for Prime Minister Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY) implementation on account of Left Wing Extremism (LWE). The states of Bihar and West Bengal which also have large connectivity to achieve and therefore, require speedy implementation, the Central Government has informed.
- The Ministry is constantly following up with all these States to ensure achievement of targets by March 2019. Funds are not a constraint and States have been forthcoming with their State share, it informed.
- The major challenge lies in Assam, Jammu & Kashmir and Uttrakhand on account of the difficult terrain.
- To further enable ease of decision making, monitoring and transparency, the Department is committed to complete GIS mapping of all rural roads of the country by 2018.
- The Chhattisgarh government has informed that new roads measuring 1320 kms have been completed in Left Wing Extremism (LWE) infested districts of the State under Centre’s RRP-I scheme.
- The roads were completed between 2011 to 2017, it was informed in a review meeting chaired by Chief Secretary Vivek Dhand at the Mantralaya in Naya Raipur in September this year.
- The Chief Secretary told officials to seek help of police forces in case they encounter any problems during road development in insurgency infested areas.
- Notably, the Chhattisgarh Government will soon take up the task of constructing a total of 98 roads in seven districts of the State under PMGSY.
- The districts where the roads would be constructed are- Sukma, Rajnandgaon, Bijapur, Dantewada, Kondagaon, Janjjgir-Champa and Kanker, officials informed.
- Notably, a total of 6372 rural roads measuring 26,815 kms had been prepared in Chhattisgarh so far involving an expenditure of Rs 7880 crore under PMGSY during the current financial .
- The project is aimed at improving the rural road connectivity in the worst LWE affected districts from security angle, officials informed.
- The project will be implemented as a vertical under PMGSY to provide connectivity with necessary culverts and cross-drainage structures in 44 worst affected LWE districts and adjoining districts in the country, critical from security and communication point of view. The roads will be operable throughout the year irrespective of all weather conditions.
- Under the project, construction/upgradation of 5,411.81 km road and 126 bridges/Cross Drainage works will be taken up at an estimated cost of Rs.11,724.53 crore in the above district.
- The fund sharing pattern of LWE road project will be same as that of PMGSY i.e. in the ratio of 60:40 between the Centre and States for all States except for eight North Eastern and three Himalayan States (Jammu & Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh & Uttarakhand) for which it is 90:10.
- The Union Ministry of Finance will have to allocate to Union Ministry of Rural Development Rs.7,034.72 crore for this project during the period of implementation 2016-17 to 2019-20.
- Chhattisgarh government has set 2018 deadline to complete construction of an additional 3,000 kms of road network with an investment of USD 2.34 billion.
- List of MoUs/Agreements signed during visit of Prime Minister to Palestine
- MOU between India and Palestine for setting up of India-Palestine Super-specialty hospital at Beit Sahour in Bethelhem Governorate at a cost ofUS$ 30 million.
- MOU between India and Palestine for construction of India Palestine Centre for Empowring women, “Turathi” at a cost ofUS$ 5 million
- MOU between India and Palestine for setting up of new National Printing Press at Ramallah at a cost ofUS$ 5 million
- MOU between India and Palestine Construction of school in Muthalth Al Shuhada Village at a cost ofUS$ 1 million
- MOU between India and Palestine Construction of school in Tamoon village in Tubas Governorate in Palestine at a cost ofUS$ 1.1 million
- MOU between India and Palestine Assistance of US$ US$ 0.25 million for construction of additional floor to Jawahar Lal Nehru for Boys at Abu Dees.
- PM Modi inaugurates Abu Dhabi’s first Hindu temple
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi has laid the foundation stone for a new temple for the Hindu community living in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
- The temple will be the first to be built in Abu Dhabi, the capital of UAE which is home to a huge Indian diaspora.
- The PM laid the foundation stone for the temple from the Dubai Opera House via video conferencing.
- This is Modi’s second visit to the UAE after August 2015.
- The UAE has two Hindu temples which are located in Dubai.
- Modi conferred ‘Grand Collar of the State of Palestine’
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi was conferred the ‘Grand Collar of the State of Palestine’ by President Mahmoud Abbas.
- President Abbas conferred the honour on Mr. Modi after the conclusion of the bilateral meeting between the two leaders.
- Modi is the first Indian Prime Minister to make an official visit to Palestine.
· Thailand most traffic congested country and Los Angeles most congested city of 2017
- According to a global traffic scorecard published annually by Inrix, a company that aggregates and analyzes traffic data collected from vehicles and highway infrastructure, the top 10 most congested cities in the world, 2017 are:
2. New York City (tie)
2. Moscow (tie)
4. Sao Paulo, Brazil
5. San Francisco
· China to reopen Nathu La pass for Mansarovar yatris in India
- China has agreed to reopen the Nathu Lapass for Indian pilgrims to undertake the Kailash Mansarovar Yatra, Minister of State for External Affairs VK Singh informed the Lok Sabha.
- China had closed the route last year citing “unfavourable conditions”, at a time when India and China were engaged in a military standoff at Doklam.
- The four-month travel period to the Kailash Mansarovar yatra starts from June.
· Saudi Arabia temporarily bans poultry imports from India over bird flu
- Saudi Arabiahas temporarily banned imports of live birds, hatching eggs and chicks from India after a form of bird flu that is highly lethal for poultry was found in the south Asian country.
- In January, India had reported an outbreak of a highly contagious bird flu virus near Bengaluru in the southern state of Karnataka.
· ONGC acquires 10 per cent stake in UAEs Zakum oilfield
- Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC)-led consortium of Indian state oil firms have acquired 10% stake in Abu Dhabi’s offshore Lower Zakum Concession.
- The acquisition is part of deal inked between company executives and UAE officials in presence of visiting Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Abu Dhabi.
- The Lower Zakum Oil Field is located 84 km north-west of Abu Dhabi Islands. It was discovered in 1963 and is owned and developed by Abu Dhabi National Oil Company.
- The total proven reserves of it are around 17.2 billion barrels and production is centered on 425,000 barrels per day (67,600 m3/d)
- IPPB to enable Digital Payments in Post Offices by April 2018
- India Post Payments Bank (IPPB) Expansion Programme continues to make brisk progress and a nation-wide roll-out is scheduled beginning April 2018.
- Once the proposed expansion is completed, IPPB will be providing the largest financial inclusion network in the country, covering both urban as well as rural hinterland with ability to provide digital payment services at the doorstep with the help of Postmen and Gramin Dak Sewaks (GDS).
- IPPB will also enable more than 17 crore active account-holders of Post Office Savings Bank to make interoperable digital payments including the benefit of NEFT, RTGS, UPI and bill payment services.
- Additionally, the IPPB will enable acceptance of digital payments across post offices in the country in line with the digital payments initiative of the government.
- Government releases Rs 9,940 crore to states for Smart Cities Mission
- The Centre has released nearly Rs 9,940 crore to the states so far for the Smart Cities Mission, with Maharashtra accounting for the highest amount of Rs 1,378 crore, followed by Madhya Pradesh getting Rs 984 crore.
- The Housing and Urban Affairs Ministry has announced 99 cities for central assistance under the BJP government’s flagship programme.
- The total proposed investment in these cities was Rs 2.03 lakh crore.
- Rajnath Singh inaugurates first spoken Sanskrit centre
- Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh launched the Centre for learning Sanskrit language in Gujarat University in Ahmedabad.
- The centre will offer a six-month course for people on how to speak the language.
- The coordinator of the course, Atul Unagar, said it was possibly the first such course launched in India.
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