Gujarat now home to 674 lions, 29% growth in population
The recently concluded ‘poonam avalokan’ or full-moon night observation which replaced Lion Census 2020 due to Covid pandemic in Gujarat has revealed a 29% rise in their population, top sources said.
Sources in the know of the counting exercise said observation undertaken on June 5-6 by forest department shows the state is now home to 674 lions, a rise of 151 lions from the count of 523 lions in the census conducted in May, 2015. The official data of the counting exercise is expected to be declared soon.
The distribution range of lions has also expanded to 30,000 sq km, rise of 36% as compared to 22,000 sq km in 2015. Officials said lion population has doub led compared to 2001 while its footprints have expanded by 400%.
Wildlife experts have pointed out in the past that the state has a robust growth in lion population in Gujarat with many even speculating that their numbers have informally crossed 1,000 mark. The state now has 159 male and 262 female lions with a healthy’ female to male ratio of 1.64. This ratio was 1.84 in 2015.
WHO launches ‘C-TAP’ for equitable access to life-saving tech
WHO has launched the ‘COVID-19 Technology Access Pool’ for equitable access to life-saving tech.
This comes after at least 37 countries jointly appealed to the World Health Organisation for common ownership of vaccines, medicines and other diagnostic tools to combat the global health crisis.
C-TAP aims to accelerate the development of vaccines and medicines through the sharing of research and information and to increase manufacturing capacity for any products that are developed.
WHO has also issued a ‘Solidarity Call to Action’ urging other stakeholders of the UN health agency to join the cause.
India to host AFC 2022 Asian Womens Cup
India is to host the 2022 Women’s Asian Cup. The hosting rights have been awarded to India by the Asian Football Confederation. This is the second time India will be hosting the event. India hosted the event for the first time in 1979. The information was passed by the All India Football Federation.
As India hosts the tournament, India will qualify directly in the tournament.
The event will serve as the final qualification tournament for the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup.
In the 1979 event, India had finished as runners-up.
Centre extended 7th Economic Census data collection period by 6 months
The Government of India has announced the extension of the data collection period for the Seventh Economic Census by 6 months, that is, till 30 September 2020. The announcement was made by the Ministry of Statistics & Programme Implementation (MoSPI).
The survey engaged around 1 million people in fieldwork. The data is collected through the door to door survey of each household and commercial establishment. It is done under the provisions of the Collection of Statistics Act 2008.
The economic census is conducted in 2020 after a gap of five years. For the survey data collection, MoSPI has partnered with CSC e-Governance Services India Ltd. Earlier, the MoSPI had put on hold several economic surveys including the measurement of domestic tourism, unemployment, and a multiple indicator survey, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Centre announces ‘Mudra Shishu loan’ for small businesses and cottage industries
Government has pledged to make an Atma Nirbhar Bharat. A 1500 crore interest subvention for small business and cottage industries has been announced under Mudra Shishu loan.
Under this scheme, one lakh beneficiaries can avail interest benefit of 2 per cent for a year.
A Rs 5000 crore package was announced for the roadside hawkers.
Under this, 50 lakh street vendors can avail loan upto Rs 10,000.
Street vendors can contact any nationalised bank to avail the benefit.
National “Artificial Intelligence Portal” of India launched
The National “Artificial Intelligence Portal” of India called “ai.gov.in” has been launched by the Union Minister for Electronics and IT, Law and Justice and Communications Ravi Shankar Prasad.
It has been jointly developed by the Ministry of Electronics and IT along with IT Industry.
The portal will be jointly run by the National e-Governance Division of Ministry of Electronics and IT along with National Association of Software and Service Companies (NASSCOM) from the IT industry.
Govt bans file sharing website ‘WeTransfer’ citing security reasons
The government has ordered internet service providers to block computer file sharing website WeTransfer due to security reasons.
The order issued by the department of telecom on May 18 directed all ISP to block two download links on the Dutch website WeTransfer and also the entire website www.wetransfer.com.
The DoT has received reference from the ministry of electronics and IT to block the website and two download links immediately.
Exact reason for blocking of the website could not be ascertained.
India launches Nagar Van project to create urban forest in 200 cities
India has launched ‘Nagar Van’ an ambitious project to create urban forest cover which will act as green lungs in 200 cities across the country.
The “Nagar Van (Urban Forests)” programme has been launched with 200 corporations and cities across India. During the launch of the programme, the Union Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar urged people to actively participate and increase the tree cover in their areas.
The “Nagar Van” programme aims to develop 200 Urban Forests across India in next five years with the help of people’s participation and collaboration between the Forest Department, Municipal bodies, NGOs, Corporates and local citizens.
Government sets up task force to examine maternal mortality rate, women’s health
The Ministry for Women and Child Development (WCD) has set up a task force to look into factors that affect Maternal Mortality Rate (MMR) among Indian women.
The task force, headed by Jaya Jaitley, has been mandated with inquiring into “matters pertaining to age of motherhood, imperatives of lowering MMR, improvement of nutritional levels and related issues.
The task force will examine the correlation of the age of marriage and motherhood with the health, medical wellbeing and nutritional status of the mother and her baby during pregnancy, childbirth and afterwards.
Gadkari launched Prevention of Human and Animal Mortality on Highways Campaign
Union Minister for Road Transport & Highways and MSME Nitin Gadkari has launched the UNDP national awareness campaign on ‘Prevention of Human and Animal Mortality on Highways’.
The campaign aims to generate awareness and education for the masses at large towards reducing or eliminating mortality on the roads of both human beings and animals.
The move aims to bring down these figures by 20-25% by the coming 31st March. So far, the Ministry of Road Transport & Highways (MoRTH) has identified over 5,000 black spots. The Ministry has also taken measures to process for their rectification including temporary and permanent measures is being carried out on an urgent basis.
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