Showing posts with label SUMMITS. Show all posts
Showing posts with label SUMMITS. Show all posts

Saturday, August 30, 2014


1. BRICS summit
Country: Brazil, Russia, India, China, South-Africa.
- 6th BRICS Summit 2014: Fortaleza, Brazil
- Next 7th BRICS Summit to be held in Ufa, Russia
Note: Ufa is the capital city of the Republic of Bashkortostan, Russia, and the industrial, economic, scientific and cultural centre of the republic.
- The theme chosen for our discussions was "Inclusive Growth: Sustainable Solutions”.
New BRICS Bank:
The New Development Bank (NDB), formerly referred to as the BRICS Development Bank, is a proposed multilateral
development bank operated by the BRICS states (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) as an alternative to the existing
World Bank and International Monetary Fund.
The New Development Bank headquarter will be in Shanghai, China.
The Bank will have a rotating chair and its first President will come from India for the first six years.
The first chair of the Board of Governors shall be from Russia.
The first chair of the Board of Directors shall be from Brazil.
The Bank will also have a regional office in Johannesburg, South Africa.
Participant leaders of the five nations are
• Brazil - Dilma Rousseff
• Russian - Vladimir Putin
• Indian - Narendra Modi
• China - Xi Jinping
• South Africa - Jacob Zuma
Development Capital: The member countries will also set up a $100 billion currency reserves pool to help countries
forestall short-term liquidity pressures.
Note: The bank will begin with a subscribed capital of $50 billion divided equally between its five founders.

2. IBSA Summit: 
India will host the next summit of IBSA (India, Brazil, South Africa) in New Delhi in 2015.

3. Nuclear security summit
· 2nd Summit 2012 – Seoul, South Korea.
· 3rd Summit 2014 : Hague, Netherland
· 4th Summit 2016: United States

4. G 8 Summit:
· G-8 Countries: Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Russia, Britain and the US
· 40th G-7 summit 2014 held at Brussels.
Note: It was the first time that the EU hosted a G7 summit. The summit is jointly represented by the European Council President Herman van Rompuy and the European Commission President.

5. G 20 Summit:
· G-20 meeting (2014) of Finance ministers and central bank governors held in Sydney (Australia).
· G20 Leaders Summit (2014) will be held in Brisbane, Queensland (Australia, in November 2014.

6. SAARC Summit:
· 18th SAARC Summit 2014- Kathmandu (Nepal)

7. NATO Summit:
 NATO Summit 2014 will be held in Britain. (Britain last hosted the summit in 1990, when Margret
Thatcher was Prime Minister).

8. BIMSTEC Summit:
· 3rd BIMSTEC summit 2014: Nay Pyi Taw (Myanmar)
· 4th BIMSTEC summit will be held in Nepal.
Note: BIMSTEC (Bay of Bangal Initiative for Multisectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation)
BIMSTEC includes 7 countries: Bangladesh, India, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Bhutan and Nepal and aims to create cooperation in multiple sectors including trade, investment and energy.

1. 18th BASIC Ministerial Meeting held in New Delhi.
BASIC - (Brazil, South Africa, India and China)
Note: 17th BASIC Ministerial Meeting on Climate Change was held in Hanzghou, China

2. ASEAN foreign-minister-meeting held in Myanmar

3. Fifth Indo-US Strategic Dialogue held in New Delhi during which the two sides discussed “transformative initiatives” in key areas of security and energy.

4. 3rd India-Africa Summit will be held in New Delhi

5. 6th International Nuclear Energy Forum ATOMEXPO-2014 held in Moscow

6. World Economic Forum 2014: held in Abuja (Nigeria). Bharti Enterprises founder and Chairman Sunil Bharti Mittal co– chair this year’s edition of the World Economic Forum on Africa.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Jute fair in Mangalore

The National Jute Board (NJB) will conduct a jute fair, an exhibition-cum-sale of lifestyle jute decorative products, in Mangalore on January 16-20.

Mayor of Mangalore, will inaugurate the event on January 16.The NJB, which is under the Union Ministry of Textiles, has been organising exhibitions, buyer-seller meets, fashion shows, seminars and workshops for the promotion of the eco-friendly jute products. The jute fair will be conducted at Woodlands Auditorium on Bunts’ Hostel Road in the city

India to host first global ministerial meet on elephants

India will host the first ever global ministerial meet – 'E 50:50' – on elephants in the Capital from November 14 to 19.
The conference, expected to be attended by 50 countries that harbour wild populations of elephants, will discuss conservation and welfare of elephants, according the Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF).
The ‘E 50:50 – the First International Elephant Congress and Ministerial Meet, will bring together scholars, conservation practitioners and policy makers to discuss issues on elephant conservation policy. It will also include conclaves on science, culture and management culminating in a ministerial summit to adopt a vision charter with common minimum global vision on conservation, management and welfare of elephants across all range countries.
At present, three species of elephants are spread across 50 countries, but regardless of geo-political boundaries, they face common threats of poaching, habitat loss and conflicts with people.
In 2010, India had set up an Elephant Task Force (ETF) to work out a strategy for the long-term conservation of the species elephants. In an effort to take the global lead on the matter, the ETF had initiated a global meet of affected countries in May 2011, such as Botswana, Congo Brazzaville, India, Indonesia, Kenya, Sri Lanka, Tanzania and Thailand.

Thursday, December 13, 2012


BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) Summits

  • 4th BRICS Summit 2012 – New Delhi, India
  • 5th BRICS  Summit 2013 – Durban, South Africa
G-8 Annual Summits
Group of Eight (G8) CountriesFrance, Germany, Italy, Japan, United Kingdom, United States of America, Canada, Russia.
  • 37th G8 Meeting 2011 – Deauville, France
  • 38th G8 Meeting 2012 – David camp, USA
  • 39th G8 Summit 2013 –  County Fermanagh, UK
  • 40th G8 Summit 2014 – Russia
G-20 Summits
  • 7th G 20 Meeting 2012 – Los Cabos, Mexico
  • 8th G 20 Meeting 2013 – Saint Petersburg, Russia
  • 9th G 20 Meeting 2014 – Brisbane, Australia
SAARC Summits
SAARC – South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation
  • 17th SAARC Summit 2011– Addu, Maldives
  • 18th SAARC Summit 2013 – Kathmandu,Nepal
ASEAN Summits
ASEANAssociation of South East Asian Nation
  • 19th ASEAN Summit 2011 (November) – Bali, Indonesia
  • 20th ASEAN Summit 2012 (April) – Phnom penh, Cambodia
  • 21th ASEAN Summit 2012  (November)– Phnom penh, Cambodia
ASEAN-India Summit
  • 9th ASEAN-India Summit 2011 – Bali, Indonesia
  • 10th ASEAN-India Summit 2012 – Phnom penh, Cambodia
East Asia Summit (EAS)

EAS meetings are held after annual ASEAN leaders’ meetings.
  • 6th East Asia Summit 2011 – Bali, Indonesia
  • 7th East Asia Summit 2012 – Phnom penh, Cambodia
IBSA Summits
IBSA Dialogue Forum - India, Brazil, South Africa.
  • 5th IBSA Summit 2011 – Pretoria, South Africa
  • 6th IBSA Summit 2013 – India
APEC Summits
APEC – Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation
  • 23rd APEC  summit 2011 – Honolulu, USA
  • 24th APEC Summit 2012 – Vladivostok,Russia
  • 25th APEC Summit 2013 – Medan/Jakarta, Indonesia
  • 26th APEC Summit 2014 – China
  • 27th APEC Summit 2015 – Philippines
  • 28th APEC Summit 2016 – Lima, Peru
OPEC Seminars
OPECOrganization of Petroleum Exporting Countries
  • 4th OPEC International Seminar 2009 – Vienna, Austria
  • 5th OPEC International Seminar 2012 – Vienna, Austria
NAM Summits
NAM – Non-aligned Movement
  • 16th NAM Summit 2012 – Tehran, Iran
  • 17th NAM Summit 2015 – Caracas,Venezuela
SCO Meetings
SCOShanghai Cooperation Organization
  • SCO Meeting 2011 – Astana, Kazakhstan
  • SCO Meeting 2012 – Beijing, China
  • SCO Meeting 2013 – Kyrgyzstan
NATO (North Atlantic treaty organization) international conference on Afghanistan will be held in Chicago (USA)

Asian Development Bank (ADB) Annual Meetings
Annual meeting of the board of governors of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) held every year.
  • ADB Annual Meeting 2012 – Manila, Philippines
  • ADB Annual Meeting 2013 – New Delhi, India
WTO Ministerial Conferences
  • 8th WTO Ministerial Conferences 2011 – Geneva, Switzerland
  • 9th WTO Ministerial Conferences 2013 (Expected) -Bali, Indonesia
Other Important Summits
  • United Nations framework convention on Climate, 2011 – Durban, South Africa
  • 10th BASIC Ministerial Meeting on Climate Change – New Delhi, India
  • Arab summit 2012 – Baghdad, Iraq
  • Nuclear security summit 2012 – Seoul, South Korea
  • 12th Annual summit of European Union and India – New Delhi, India
  • G-20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors meeting – Mexico City, Mexico
  • Friends of Syria Meeting – Istanbul,Turkey
  • 5th Ministerial level India-UK Economic Financial Dialogue – New Delhi
  • United Nation Conference on Sustainable Development 2012 – Rio de janeiro,Brazil
  • 17th National youth Festival – Mangalore, Karnataka
  • World Economic Forum – Davos, Switzerland
  • World Polio Summit 2012 – New Delhi, India
  • India, Russia Inter-Governmental Commission meet 2012 – New Delhi, India
  • The sixth conference of the Association of SAARC Speakers and Parliamentarians held in Islamabad on 4th November 2012.
  • E-9 countries review meeting held in New Delhi on 9th and 10th November 2012.The E-9 countries are India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, China, Brazil, Egypt, Indonesia, Nigeria and Mexico.
  • The 8th meeting of the India-UK Joint Working Group (JWG) on counter terrorism was held on 20 November 2012 in New Delhi.
  • The 3rd Worldwide Cybersecurity Summit organized by East West Institute, a New York based think-and-do tank, kick-started in the New Delhi on 30th October 2012.
  • South Korea will host the 12th meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP12) to the Convention on Biological Diversity in 2014.
  • The XI Conference of Parties (CoP-11) on the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) being hosted by India at Hyderabad starts on 1st October 2012.
  • The 9th World Hindi Conference to be held in Johannesburg ,South Africa from 22-24 September 2012.The first world Hindi Conference was held in Nagapur from 10-12 January 1975.
  • The APEC Russia 2012 Summit is the 24th annual gathering of APEC leaders of 21 countries.Leaders from the member economics are currently meeting on Russky Island off the Coast of Vladivostok, Russia from September 2-9 ,2012 .
  • The world’s largest meeting on HIV/AIDS opened on 22nd July in Washington.
  • The Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) Summit held in HICC, Novotel Hyderabad. The summit was held between 22 August 2012 to 25 August 2012.
  •  7th ASEAN education Ministers meeting on July 4 with the 1st Asean plus three education Minister Meeting and the 1st East Asia Summit Education Minister meeting from July4-5 in Yogyakarta, Indonesia.
  •  A One day International conference in Kabul took place on June 14,2012 to discuss ways to stabilize the situation in Afghanistan and boost regional cooperation.
  •  101 st session of International Labour Conference  organized by International Labour Organization(ILO), concluded on June 14 ,2012 in Geneva.
  •  The Rio+20 Conference, world leaders, along with thousands of participants from governments took place in Brazil on 20-22 June 2012
  •  India To Host Alternative International AIDS conference
  •  World Agriculture Congress mega event will be hosted by the Hyderabad city for the first time in the country.
  •  The 6th Summit of the Americas was held At Cartagena, Colombia on 14 and 15 April 2012.
  •  The Russia, India and China (RIC) trilateral conference was held in Mascow on 13 April 2012.
  •  The seventh meeting of the India-Russia Joint Working Group was held in New Delhi on 11 April 2012.
  •  Two-days national agricultural conference held at New Delhi.
  •  The international exhibition-cum conference ” Indian Aviation 2012 held at Hyderabad from 14-18 March 2012.
  • The 23rd Arab summit was held on 29 March 2012 Baghdad, half of the Arab world’s 22 heads of states had to meet for the summit in former president Saddam Hussain’s palace, but only few leaders gathered.
  •  India, the independence accreditation agency organized its 1st world summit on Accreditation from 25 -28 March 2012 in New Delhi.
  •  The I’st World summit on Accreditation is going to be held in March 2012 at New Delhi.
  •  A seven days Turkey World Trade Bridge International Business Summit is going to be organized by the confederation of Businessman and Industrialists of Turkey (TUSKON) and the Indo-Turkish Business Association (ITBA) from 3 June to 10 June 2012 in Istanbul.
  • AIMA’s second Knowledge summit was held in Bangalore on 7March 2012.
  • The 9th three day International conference & exhibition was hosted by the society of Petroleum Geophysicists (SPG),which was inaugurated on 16 feb 2012 in Hyderabad.
  • The 44Th session of Indian Labour conference was held on 14 and 15 Feb 2012, under the chairmanship of Shri Mallikajun Kharge, Union minister of Labour and Employment.
  • The Association of South East Nations (Asean ) summit had held in New Delhi on 12 Feb 2012 with the theme of India and Asean partners for peace, progress and stability. 
  • The 12th India – EU summit was held in New Delhi on 10 Feb 2012.
  • The 4th ” International Conference on Luminescence and its Application’s” (ICLA) 2012 conference had been organised by the Rajiv Gandhi University of Knowledge Technologies on 8 Feb2012 in Hyderabad.
  •  The 15th National conference on e-Governance conference had been inaugurated by the chief minister of Odisha M.Naveen Patnaik on 8 Feb 2012
  • The 10th International Kimberlite conference meeting was held from 6 to 11 Feb 2012 at Bangalore (GSI).
  • The 58th annual meeting of the Indian Association of Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgeons (IACTS) was held from 8 to 12 Feb 2012 in Kolkata
  • The national conference on Governance’ was held on 29 Jan  2012 at the NCUI auditorium in New Delhi.
  • Prime Minister Manmohan Singh inaugurated 15th Global Sanskrit Meetings in New Delhi on 4 January 2012.
  • 99th Science Congress Conferences were inaugarated by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in Bhuvaneswar, Odisha on 3 January 2012. 

Thursday, August 9, 2012

First Meeting of the India-CELAC Troika Foreign Ministers was held in New Delhi

First meeting of the India-CELAC Troika foreign ministers was held in New Delhi. The first meeting of the India-CELAC (The Community of Latin American and Caribbean States) Troika foreign ministers was held in New Delhi on 7 August 2012. The CELAC Troika was led by the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Chile Alfredo Moreno Charme, the pro-tempore President of CELAC. The Foreign Minister of Venezuela Nicolas Maduro and the Vice Foreign Minister of Cuba, Rogelio Sierra participated in the meeting as members of the Troika. The Indian delegation was led by the External Affairs Minister of India, SM Krishna.
The meeting was held with the objective of strengthening India-CELAC relationship.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

11th Pravasi Bharatiya Divas to be held in Cochin

The 11th Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (PBD) will be held from 7 to 9 January, 2013 in Cochin. Vayalar Ravi, Minister of Overseas Indian Affairs said that the Prime Minister will inaugurate this annual flagship event of the Ministry on 2013 January 8, and the President of India will deliver the valedictory address on 2013 January 9 and also confer the Pravasi Bhartiya Samman Awards. The pre-conference seminars will also be organized on  7 January.

The Minister said that the PBD has become a significant forum to connect the overseas Indians from all over the world and the PBD-2013 will be focusing on more connectivity with overseas Indians. He further said that Kerala will be the partner State of the 11th PBD, which would provide the Diaspora an opportunity to understand the vibrant culture and potential of the State. The Minister said that more than 2000 delegates are expected to participate in PBD-2013 from all over the world.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012


1. 20th ASEAN Summit - Phnom Penh (Cambodia)
2. 4th BRICS summit - New Delhi
3. 10th BASIC Ministerial Meeting on Climate Change - New Delhi
4. Arab summit 2012 - Baghdad (Iraq)
5. Nuclear security summit 2012 – Seoul (South Korea)
6. 12th Annual summit of European Union and India - New Delhi
7. G-20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors meeting - Mexico City
8. Friends of Syria Meeting – Istanbul (Turkey)
9. 5th Ministerial level India-UK Economic Financial Dialogue – New Delhi
10. United Nation Conference on Sustainable Development 2012 – Rio de janeiro (Brazil)
11. 17th National youth Festival – Mangalore (Karnataka)
12. World Economic Forum – Davos (Switzerland)
13. World Polio Summit 2012 - New Delhi

Friday, May 25, 2012

Annual Conference on Disaster Management

Annual Conference of Relief Commissioners/ Secretaries, Department of Disaster Management of States/ UTs will be held on 28th May, 2012 in New Delhi to review the status of preparedness for dealing with crisis situations resulting from the South-west Monsoon, 2012 and to discuss other disaster management related issues. Representatives of concerned Central Ministries/ Organizations rendering Emergency Support Functions will also participate besides representatives of Central Armed Police Forces.

The Conference will be inaugurated by Shri R.K. Singh, Union Home Secretary and will be presided over by Shri A.E. Ahmad, Secretary (Border Management), Ministry of Home Affairs.

India Meteorological Department, Central Water Commission, Ministry of Defence, National Disaster Management Authority, Indian National Centre for Ocean Information Services, National Disaster Response Force, Snow and Avalanche Studies Establishment and Indian Space Research Organization will also participate in the conference. The role of these organizations in preparedness and further enhancement of their capabilities to deal with the disasters will be discussed. The various issues related to disaster preparedness and other disaster management relating to the States/UTs will be reviewed/discussed.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

National Workshop India’s National Communication to UNFCCC – Future Challenges

At National Workshop is held at New Delhi on India’s National communication to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), organized by the Minister of Environment and Forests on May 9, 2012; India’s Second National Communication to the UNFCCC was released. India’s Second National Communication to the UNFCCC has been prepared by the Ministry of Environment and Forests, Government of India towards fulfillment of the reporting obligation under the Convention.

Unveiling the Natcom II the Minster of state (I/C) for Environment & Forests Smt. Jayanthi Natarajan said that India is fully committed to its responsibilities towards global community. She said that India has voluntarily reduced carbon emission.She congratulated the scientists for commendable work.

The secretary, Ministry of Environment & Forest Shri T. Chatterjee said that National Communication II reiterates India’s commitment to global concerns on climate change. He said local and regional data has been very curial is preparing the document.

It is recalled that India is a Party to the UNFCCC. The Convention, in accordance with is Article 4.1 and 12.1 , enjoins all Parties, both developed and developing country Parties, to furnish information , in the form of a National Communication (a national report), regarding implementation of the convention. The Ministry of Environment and Forests is the Executing and Implementing Agency for the project for preparation of the national communication. A National Steering Committee (NSC) under the Chairmanship of Secretary (E&F) oversaw the implementation of the work programme devised for preparation by the Government of India. A National Project Director co-ordinates the activities and is assisted by National Technical Experts, housed under the Project Management Cell (PMC).

Towards fulfillment of the obligation of furnishing information on implementation of the Convention, the Government of India submitted its Second National Communication in May, 2012. The First (Initial) National Communication was submitted to the UNFCCC Secretariat on June 22, 2004.

A broad based participatory approach was followed involving multi-disciplinary teams and other stakeholders comprising of more than 220 scientists belonging to over 120 institutions. These teams were drawn from premier Research Institutions, Universities, Government Ministries and Departments and Non-Governmental Organizations of national repute across the country. Besides, the stakeholder consultations, training, thematic and awareness generation events covering more than 1000 participants were organized through 30 conferences/seminars/workshops/consultations across the country towards preparation of the report.

The salient features of report include:

The report provides the context and the National Circumstances inter alia India’s geography, imperative inter alia India’s geography, imperative of development needs, climate and economy; based on which India would be addressing and responding to the challenges of climate change.

The report includes results of wide ranging of studies, specifically conducted at the National level capturing diversity of India.

The Greenhouse Gas Inventory of gases of anthropogenic origin for the year 2000 has been reported, as per the stipulated guidelines using prescribed methodologies by Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

It is to be noted that, for year 2000, the net Carbon dioxide equivalent greenhouse gas emissions for India were estimated to be 1301.21 million tones, indicating a growth of 4.2% in Carbon dioxide equivalent emissions from the levels in 1994.

The report also provides the GHG profile for the year 2007 - a unique feature of this report, which is estimated to be of the order of 1771.66 million tones CO2 equivalent.

The report provides details of climate change scenarios for one scenario, namely; A1B (for three time slices), which assumes a significant energy technological advancement, with a healthy mix of renewable energy technologies. A overall warming scenario is projected.

Climate change impacts in A1B scenario for key sectors of the economy such as water, agriculture, forestry, natural ecosystems, coastal regions, human health, energy, industry and human settlements were assessed using improved models.

It is expected that the information in this report shall be useful to the various stakeholders in policy making at different levels. It is also expected that the information will enhance the understanding of the issues related to climate change and its impacts and create general awareness relating to Government of India’s proactive efforts towards addressing the challenges due to climate change.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

World it Forum - Conference to Focus on ICT for Sustainable Development

India is all set to host World Information Technology Forum (WITFOR) 2012 tomorrow in Vigyan Bhawan,New Delhi . The fifth edition of the coveted event is being organised by the International Federation for Information Processing (IFIP), in partnership with the Department of Electronics & Information Technology (DEITy), Ministry of Communications & Information Technology, Government of India.

The Forum opens tomorrow with the inaugural address by Shri Kapil Sibal, Minister of Communications and IT & HRD, Government of India. Other key speakers at the inaugural function are Mr. Janis Karklins, Assistant Director General, Communication and Information Sector, UNESCO, Shri Sachin Pilot, Minister of State for Communications and IT, Government of India, Mr Leon Strous, President, IFIP and Shri J Satyanarayana, Secretary, Department of Electronics and Information Technology, Government of India

WITFOR will focus, on use of ICT in agriculture, education, health and e-Governance, within the overall theme of ‘ICT for Sustainable Human Development’. Representatives from over 30 countries will share their knowledge, views and best practices in the use of IT for governance and delivery of key public services, brought together on a common platform that will allow them to showcase successful, working models of the use of ICT for development.

WITFOR was born out of the need for emerging economies and developed countries to collaborate and harness the potential for digital technologies for sustainable development. Since its inception in 2003, World IT Forums have been held four times–in Vietnam (2009), Ethiopia (2007), Botswana (2005) and Lithuania (2003). The activities of the Forum are broadly guided by the World Summit on the Information Society`s (WSIS) Plan of Action, in order to help achieve the UN Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). The participation in WITFOR has risen from 600 to 1,500 in six years, bearing testimony to its robust content and the diversity of attendees. The WITFOR conferences help bring together a variety of stakeholders to discuss, debate and analyse ways in which ICT is powering the engine of growth and development in the emerging economies for policymakers and practitioners to share knowledge on ‘ICT for development’ with their international counterparts who are facing similar challenges in their countries.

With over 80 speakers from around the world, WITFOR 2012 aims to bring together a unique mix of policymakers and political leaders, social entrepreneurs, academic researchers, practitioners and executives, both from the private and public sector. Leaders from multilateral organisations like UNESCO, UNDP, the World Bank and from regional bodies like the West African Health Organisation will share their experiences in meeting the challenges of globalisation and sustainable development.

Other attendees include high-level dignitaries from the governments of Bangladesh, Canada, Sri Lanka, Nigeria, Moldova, Paraguay, as well as senior members of academia and from across South Asia, Latin America, Europe and Africa. The Forum, aimed primarily at fostering an informed debate among policymakers, will also bring together senior bureaucrats and technologists from South Korea, Canada, Nigeria, Kenya, Malaysia, Estonia, Moldova and Secretaries to the Government of India – both from the Centre and the states.

WITFOR is an important international event that places the host country on an international platform to showcase its achievements. So far, India has hosted only regional ICT/e-Governance international events and partnering in WITFOR 2012 will give Indian Policy Makers as well as Industry and opportunity not only to learn from other countries but will also open avenues for further cooperation and business development especially for innovative products such as Aakash and value added services delivered on Mobile Platforms. Also, WITFOR 2012 will give Indian States an opportunity to showcase their premier e-Governance projects and give international delegates an opportunity to visit such projects across India

The Forum will discuss the role of IT interventions in bringing about greater transparency in governance, issues of privacy and security while dealing with public databases, financial inclusion and ways of leveraging wireless technologies. It will also debate challenges related to the training of health workers, capacity building, evidence-based decision making to improve health outcomes, the role of government in primary healthcare, and the role of ICT in creating digital content, bridging the skills gap and the digital divide, as well as improving productivity, food security, knowledge transfer in the agriculture sector.

As a country with enormous ICT capabilities and equally immense socio-economic development challenges, India attracts significant international attention for its efforts to exploit the developmental potential of ICT. At the same time, Indian policymakers and practitioners can learn from the experiences of other countries. WITFOR 2012 will provide a unique opportunity for sharing knowledge on mobilising ICT for development, among a diverse range of professionals engaging in this effort in many countries with a variety of development challenges. WITFOR 2012 will provide a valuable forum for understanding how the power of ICT can be harnessed for sustainable development.

With nearly 1200 registrations , delegates are drawn from the public and private sectors across India, as well as from Africa, Europe, Asia and Australia, including participants from Greece, Poland, Finland, Croatia, Paraguay, South Korea, Zimbabwe, Liberia, Nigeria, Kenya, Ghana and South Africa. Indian delegates include senior government officials from various states, public enterprises, private sector and academia, from all across the country, as well as independent researchers, ICT enthusiasts, students, entrepreneurs and members of the academia and development practitioners.
WITFOR 2013 will be held in Paraguay.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Second Nuclear Security Summit was held in Seoul

The second nuclear security summit was held in Seoul, capital of South Korea on26-27 March 2012. 53 heads of state and government, as well as representatives of the United Nations (UN), International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), European Union (EU) and INTERPOL, attended the 2012 Seoul Nuclear Security Summit. Compared to the 2010 Washington Summit, there were seven new participants: Azerbaijan, Denmark, Gabon, Hungary, Lithuania, Romania and INTERPOL.

The EU was represented by both the President of the European Council and the President of the European Commission, making the number of participating leaders 58 in total. The first Nuclear Security Summit was held in Washington in  April 2010. It was initiated by US President Barack Obama.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

India-Africa S&T Ministers’ Conference held at New Delhi

The two day Conference of India Africa S&T Ministers began on March 01 at Vigyan Bhawan in New Delhi. The Minister of Science & Technology and Earth Sciences Shri Vilasrao Deshmukh inaugurated the Conference amidst enthusiasm and hope of better future. Following is the text of Hon’ble Minister’s inaugural address:

“I begin my address with a warm welcome to all you of you present here. This city of Delhi is historic. The occasion today is also historic. The first Indo-African S&T Ministers conference offers a special occasion. We have assembled here to develop a new platform and a concrete road map of cooperation in science, technology and innovation with African countries. This value based cooperation needs to be built on principles of shared vision, mutual understanding and goodwill.

During the India-Africa Forum Summit held in New Delhi in 2008 the Hon’ble Prime Minister of India Dr. Manmohan Singh had announced substantive commitments of India to engage with African nations. This included the landmark `Africa-India S&T Cooperation Initiative’. In pursuance of the Summit declaration, the Department of Science & Technology in partnership with our Ministry of External Affairs is working on a new Africa-India S&T Program in partnership with the African Union since 2010. The initiative aims to proactively develop S&T linkages with institutions in African nations. The primary focus should be to enhance capacity building and development of human resources in R&D. The goals are long term so that we are able to generate true partnership and value based relationship that has mutual benefit. The soft prowess of scientific and technological cooperation can be effectively leveraged by building bridges between the scientific communities of India and Africa.

There are several 21st century challenges which India and African nations have to meet together in their journey for economic development. Science, Technology and Innovation could play an effective role in meeting some of these common challenges. For instance the requirements for food, energy, water and affordable health care are common challenges. The adverse impact of climate change is a shared global concern. Inclusive growth is a priority need of both India and countries in Africa. Building inclusiveness and rapid growth based on equity is not an easy task. Sustainable development in the world of economic imbalance and disparity is even a greater challenge. Current IPR regime in a competitive world order becomes a factor for denial of affordable technologies. New paths may be required to develop corrective models through partnership. I believe, India-Africa S&T cooperation should embark upon new tools and models which can be of mutual good by creating a win-win situation.

Your Excellency`s, I would also like to inform you that under the African S&T initiative we have made a modest beginning. The prestigious CV Raman Fellowships have been launched. This annual fellowship program offers opportunity for a large number of scientists from Africa at different stages of their careers to undertaking research work with their counterparts in Indian R&D institutions and universities. We believe through these fellowships we can develop new scientific relationships and also build cultural connections between our countries. I urge upon all of you to popularize this fellowship scheme in your respective countries. We need to achieve the full utilization of the opportunities provided under the fellowship program. 5. Indian S&T sector is in a growth phase. The infra-structure in our laboratories is being strengthened. Most of our R&D and academic institutions are now actively engaged in international collaborations with allows mobility of students and researchers. I see here an opportunity for science and engineering students at the Masters and PhD levels from Africa to undertake student internships in Indian research institutions. Through this exposure we can connect the young scientists and build bridges between next generations. While brain-drain to other developed countries may be an issue for developing economies, I can assure you that while sending your students to India, such concerns may not be relevant!

Human resource development and capacity building can also be achieved through hands-on training programs and advanced schools which can be supported under the Africa-India S&T Initiative. Through a consultation process, I suggest we develop such modules which are relevant in the African context and can help towards fostering future R&D partnerships.

We have also embarked upon a plan to strengthen the capacity of identified institutions under our cooperation initiative. The objective would be to strengthen some of the institutions engaged in research activities which have cross cutting impact on a regional scale. This can be achieved by building institutional and academic twinning with institutions in India. Under this program, visiting faculty from India can also work in institutions in Africa and share knowledge and technical expertise. To begin with, in consultation with the African Union with we have identified three such institutions in Africa who are represented in this conference.

Today the challenges faced by humanity are global in nature and no nation alone can face and mitigate these issues. At this forum where leaders and policy makers are represented, we must make a collective effort to identify some of the areas of mutual interest in research which we can address together.We should aim to devise effective ways through which we can pool our scientific resources, infra-structure and human intellect.

It is important for any nation to convert the fruits of scientific and technological research to contribute both at the policy planning level and for economic development. I am glad that another unique feature of theIndia-Africa S&T initiative is the due recognition of `technology transfer and adoption` as a central theme in our partnership program. Through the technology exposition which we have put together as a part of this two days conference, you will get a glimpse of selected homegrown technologies and innovations. Some of these technologies being frugal and affordable can easily `touch the lives of the untouched people` in both India and Africa. Affordable innovations and traditional knowledge sectors could form the wings of Indo-African partnership.

A few initial thoughts that come to my mind to facilitate this interaction could be through: • Visits of expert delegation from India to African countries for identification of an initial set of potential sectors for technology transfer/collaboration;

• Organization of joint workshops, technology expo, road shows for requirement assessment and feasibility study;

• Identification of agencies that can provide the technology for transfer to the African countries;

• Develop appropriate linkages between industry associations and SME`s to facilitate tech transfers; and

• Facilitating technology transfer and establishment of pilot scale demonstration plants in Africa.

I therefore call upon all the leaders` participating in this conference to embark upon a new paradigm of S&T partnership `where giving and sharing is gaining`. A partnership, that will enable us to meet our aspirations together.

I take this opportunity to once again reiterate India`s full commitment in furthering our new S&T relationship with African nations. I am quite confident that this first ever India-Africa S&T Ministers conference will provide a new dimension to our future scientific and technological engagements. Finally, I would also like to thank Your Excellency`s for honouring our invite and to participate in this conference. We will explore together the endless possibilities and new horizons of working together in the true spirit of mutual trust, respect and selfless friendship”.

India-Africa S&T Ministers Conference

Under the framework of the S&T Initiatives for Africa, Department of Science & Technology in partnership with Ministry of External Affairs is holding a "India-Africa S&T Ministers Conference` on 1-2 March 2012 at New Delhi. This major Ministerial level event is being organised in close coordination with the African Union Commission and is expected to attend Science & Technology Ministers from across the African continent along with senior official from various countries. The attendees will also include the Heads of African country missions based in Delhi, officials from the African Union Commission and the representatives of the eight Regional African Economic Forums.

The event is expected to provide a platform for the advocacy, outreach and commitment of India under the framework of the New S&T Cooperation Initiative with Africa. Besides showcasing the value based relationship and opportunities which India can offer, the Ministerial Conference will help to develop linkages and also secure the interests and commitments of the African partners to this Indian initiative. The presence of the policy and decision makers from both sides will also help to discuss, outline and develop future S&T interactions including collaborative research, student and faculty exchange programs, knowledge and technology transfer platforms and various capacity building mechanisms which are relevant to the African country`s needs.

The two-day exposition on March 1-2, 2012 will showcase the relevant Indian technologies and innovative products both at grass root and advanced levels across the sectoral spread. The participating institutions will be drawn from CSIR, DST, FICCI and the National Innovation Foundation.

The exhibition will be attended by S&T Ministers from across the African continent along with Senior Officials from various African countries, Heads of African country missions based in Delhi, officials from the African Union Commission and the representatives of the eight Regional African Economic Forums.

Panchayati Raj Minister holds meeting with State Panchayat Ministers

The Minister of Panchayati Raj held a meeting with Ministers In-charge of Panchayats and Municipalities of the States, State Election Commissioners (SECs) and Secretaries of concerned departments. The meeting was organized by the Ministry of Panchayati Raj to share experiences on various aspects of the recommendations of the Task Force constituted by the Ministry to look at the issues of strengthening the institution of the State Election Commission and electoral reform. Almost all Sates were represented in the meeting. Addressing the meeting, the Minister said that the State Government must value the importance of Local Self Governments. He informed that the Panchayat Sashktikaran Abhiyan for the 12th Five Year Plan is under the formulation in the Ministry and this has been approved in principle by the Planning Commission. He said that the Ministry is working out the guidelines to support the State Election Commissions as recommended by the Task Force. He expressed the hope that it would be approved during 2012-13. He further said that such assistance will be available only to the duly constituted and empowered State Election Commissions, as recommended by the Task Force.

During the meeting, the issues discussed related to proper status of SECs, reasonable autonomy to them, availability of sufficient financial powers, funds and manpower to SECs, vesting of powers of Civil Courts on State Election Commissioners, on-line voting, curbing of the practice of paid news carried by print and electronic media etc. There was almost unanimous endorsement of the suggestions and steps to be taken as recommended by the Task Force and the Standing Committee on the SECs for making SCE a sufficiently robust institution to enable it to perform its functions in a more pointed, effective and meaningful manner. The Ministry, on its part, impressed upon the representatives from States to vigorously pursue these suggestions and recommendations to realize the true value and importance of Local Self Governments. The most important action required on the part of the States was identified as the amendment of the respective State Laws/Rules to strengthen the institution of State Election Commission so that the intention of democratic governance at grass-root level enshrined in the Constitution is fully met in its true and effective essence.

The Ministry of Panchayati Raj constituted a Task Force in March 2011 primarily to look at the issues of strengthening the institution of the State Election Commission and electoral reform. The Task Force submitted its report in October 2011 to the ministry and this was shared with the Standing Committee of the State Election Commissioners, who gave their comments in December 2011. The report of the Task Force was accepted subject to the modifications proposed by the Standing Committee. This was also discussed in the conference of the State Election Commissioners held in Kolkata in the first week of January 2012. There had been broad unanimity about the recommendations.

National Seminar on “Social Group Statistics and Present Statistical System

A two-day National Seminar on “Social Group Statistics and Present Statistical System: Emerging Policy Issues, Data Needs and Reforms” began here today. It is being jointly organized by Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation (MOSPI) and Indian Institute of Dalit Studies. The seminar was inaugurated by Minister of Statistics and Programme Implementation Shri Srikant Kumar Jena. While addressing the audience consisting of eminent scholars, Senior Government officials from the Central Ministries/Departments and State governments, Academicians and policy makers, Shri Jena emphasized the necessity of organizing such seminar, which provides a platform to deliberate on important issue of growing demand for social group-specific policies, as specific solutions are required for specific problems.

Shri Jena also stated that the National Data Bank set up under the Ministry as per the recommendations of Sachar Committee requires more disaggregated level data for social groups and socio-religious categories. The Minister, mentioning the provisions of Indian Constitution and various U.N. Declarations, highlighted the need for minimizing the inequalities not only among individuals or groups of people living in States but also amongst the people residing across the country. He stated that through successive five year plans, the Government of India has been implementing various welfare schemes targeting the social groups with the objective of poverty alleviation and highlighted the significant economic growth, development, reduction in poverty and improvement in crucial human development indicators such as literacy, education and health achieved by the country since independence.

Shri Jena stressed the need for sound data collection and dissemination system and analysis, particularly pertaining to social group statistics as it would be immensely useful for planning, policy formulation and designing focused programmes for the social groups. He touched upon the limitations in the existing statistical system pertaining to social groups and hoped that this Seminar shall revisit the Indian statistical system and suggest reforms and ways to strengthen the statistical system, especially keeping in view group-specific policies and programmes.

The inaugural session of the seminar was also addressed by Prof. Sukhadeo Thorat, Chairman, Indian Council for Social Science Research; Dr. T.C.A. Anant, Chief Statistician of India & Secretary, Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation and Shri S.K. Das, Director General, Central Statistics Office. All the speakers stressed upon the urgent need of sound database pertaining to the social group statistics so that more focused policies and programmes be prepared by the planners.

State Education Ministers’ Conference

A Conference of State & UT Education Ministers’ was held here today. It was chaired by Shri Kapil Sibal, Minister for Human Resource Development, Communications and IT, Government of India. Dr. D. Purandeswari, Minister of State for HRD, 23 Ministers of Education representing State Governments and Union Territories, Smt. Anshu Vaish, Secretary, Department of School Education & Literacy, Smt. Vibha Puri Das, Secretary, Higher Education, Dr. T. Ramasami, Secretary, Department of Science and Technology, Prof. Sanjay G. Dhande, Director, IIT-Kanpur and senior officials of the Central and State Governments were present.

A presentation on the reforms proposed in the entrance examinations for admission to engineering institutions was made by Dr Ramasami and Prof Dhande. States felt that there is a need to limit the multiplicity of entrance examinations thereby reducing stress on students and parents. It was clarified to States that the reform would not, in any way, affect reservations followed by States and the Centre. It was also clarified to North-Eastern States that the special pool made available by the Ministry of Human Resource Development would not be affected. It was clarified to that the States could adopt their own weightages for State Board marks and the National examinations for admission to State-level institutions. Accordingly, States could adopt 100% weightage for State Board results as in the State of Tamil Nadu which would not be disturbed by the proposed arrangement. It was informed that the academic component of the Main and Advanced examinations would be handled by IITs whereas the management and conduct of the examination would be done by CBSE in collaboration with State Boards. It was informed that the IITs and other Central Educational Institutions were proposing to adopt a weightage of 40% for State Board marks. Certain States raised the issue of conduct of examination in regional languages. It was clarified that the examinations would be conducted in English and Hindi and where States intend to use the same examination for admission to State engineering institutions, the examination could be conducted in the regional language of the State too. Issues on validity of scores for two years, involvement of the private engineering institutions and revenue sharing with States were also raised.

After detailed deliberations, the proposal for a common national examination with effect from 2013 with weightage to State Board results, normalized on the basis of percentiles formula, was endorsed “in principle” by States. The States of Tamil Nadu, Himachal Pradesh, Odisha, Puducherry and West Bengal sought more time to study the proposal in detail. The States may decide on adopting the same pattern for admission to State-level engineering institutions with appropriate weightages as States may think fit. It was decided that the details for the common examination process would be finalized in the next two months in consultation with States.

Presentations were made by the Ministry of HRD and AICTE on the National Vocational Education Qualifications Framework (NVEQF) and concept on Community Colleges. While welcoming the development of NVEQF, the State Education Ministers felt that NVEQF will be an important landmark in improving the skills and employability of the youth of this country. The report of State Education Ministers headed by the Hon’ble Education Minister of Bihar on NVEQF was unanimously accepted. After deliberations, NVEQF and the concept on community colleges was unanimously endorsed by States. The need to have a dialogue at the State level with School Boards, Boards of Technical Education and universities to provide a seamless pathway for vocational students was stressed. It was decided to start 100 Community Colleges on a pilot basis in 2012-13 and then scale up gradually. The States were requested to identify local skill requirements linked to local needs which could form the basis of opening community colleges and forward proposals to the Central Government. It was decided to constitute a Committee of State Education Ministers headed by Smt Archana Chitnis, Hon’ble Minister of School Education of Madhya Pradesh, to finalise the scheme of community colleges.

Presentations were made on the quality of Elementary Education as also on Grievance Redressal under the RTE Act. The State Education Ministers agreed that the issue of quality of Elementary Education is a matter of deep concern. While many States have developed state vision of quality and also initiated some curricular reform, but a lot of age-inappropriate material continues to form part of the textbooks and teaching learning material used in classrooms. States were requested to initiate steps to formulate age-appropriate curricula and syllabi in keeping with the principles of section 29 of the RTE Act and NCF-2005. States were also requested to institute CCE from the child’s perspective to show progress that the child has made with respect to his or her performance. State Governments were also requested to put in place the Grievance Redressal and appellate mechanism taking into account the guidelines prescribed under the RTE Act.