27th Nov, 2020

National Portal For Transgender Persons Launched

 ‘National Portal for Transgender Persons’ was recently launched.

Launched by: Ministry for Social Justice & Empowerment

National Portal for Transgender Persons was developed after the Notification of Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Rules, 2020 was released.

This Portal would help a transgender person in applying for a Certificate and Identity card digitally from anywhere in the country.

The most important benefit is that it helps the transgender person to get the I-Card without any physical interface and without having to visit any office. 

Through the Portal, they can monitor the status of their application that ensures transparency in the process.

Getting Transgender Certificate and Identity Cards as per their self-perceived identity is an important provision of The Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Act, 2019.

Garima Greh: A Shelter Home for Transgender Persons’ e-inaugurated

A ‘Garima Greh: A Shelter Home for Transgender Persons’ was recently e-inaugurated in Vadodara, Gujarat.

Inaugurated by: Ministry for Social Justice & Empowerment 

Under the Scheme of ‘Shelter Home for Transgender Persons’, the ministry has decided to set up shelter homes for transgender persons who have been forced to leave their homes or abandoned by the family. 

This is first such home in Vadodara.

By March 31st, 2021, Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Patna, Kolkata, Jaipur, Raipur, Bhubaneswar and Manipur will also have such homes to be called “Garima Greh” with a capacity for 25 persons.

They will be run by transgender community-led organisations. 

These shelters will also provide skill training to connect the community members with livelihood opportunities.

This is a pilot project.

On its successful completion, similar schemes will be extended to other parts of the country.

Electronic Vaccine Intelligence Network

The Indian government is using eVIN (Electronic Vaccine Intelligence Network) in association with the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) to identify primary beneficiaries and vaccine distribution networks.

eVIN is an indigenously developed technology. 

It digitises vaccine stocks and monitors the temperature of the cold chain through a smartphone application.

The innovative eVIN was first launched across 12 states in 2015 to support better vaccine logistics management at cold chain points.

eVIN supports the central government’s Universal Immunization Programme by providing real-time information on vaccine stocks and flows, and storage temperatures across all cold chain points across states and UTs.

The government has begun its preparations for introduction of Covid-19 vaccine and a National Expert Group on Vaccine Administration for Covid-19 (NEGVAC) has been formed as the highest group that will guide the strategies for vaccine introduction.

Decisions taken regarding Ensuring Adequate Numbering Resources for Fixed Line and Mobile Services

With the consideration of TRAI Recommendation on “Ensuring Adequate Numbering Resources for Fixed Line and Mobile Services”, Department of Telecommunications shall implement certain decisions.

Decisions taken

All Fixed to Mobile calls will be dialed with prefix ‘0’ from 15th January, 2021.

There will be no change in dialling plan from fixed to fixed, mobile to fixed and mobile to mobile calls.

An announcement shall be played whenever a subscriber dials a fixed to mobile call without prefixing ‘0’.

All fixed line subscribers will be provided with ‘0’ dialling facility.

A total of approximately 2539 million numbering series is expected to be generated from the above. 

This will free up sufficient numbering resources for future use.

With the freeing up of sufficient numbering resources, more number of connections can be added in future which will be beneficial to the mobile customers at large.

FDI in Telecom

Union Cabinet approved ₹2,480 crore FDIin ATC Telecom Infra Pvt Ltd. 

ATC Asia Pacific Pte. Ltd is looking to acquire 12.32% stake in ATC Telecom Infra Pvt Ltd through the FDI route.

FDI up to 100% is allowed in Telecom Services Sector wherein 49% under automatic route and beyond 49% through government route subject to observance of licensing and security conditions by the licensee as well as investors as notified by the Department of Telecommunications (DoT)

from time to time.

NIIF’s Debt Platform approved

To drive infrastructure creation in India, the Union Cabinet approved the infusion of ₹6,000 crore equity in National Infrastructure Investment Fund’s (NIIF’s) debt platform in the next two years.

Out of the proposed amount, ₹2,000 crore will be infused in the current financial year.

NIIF Debt Platform is sponsored by National Investment and Infrastructure Fund (NIIF).

Under NIIF, there are several funds.

The NIIF’s debt platform will raise debt from the bond market and will provide debt/loan to infrastructure companies.

It will act as an intermediary between the bond market and the infrastructure projects.

Infrastructure projects do not directly raise money from the bond markets because they lack credibility in such markets. 

The NIIF and its platforms’ ratings are good because government has invested 49% equity into it. 

Any fund can raise money through two routes – Equity and Debt and can then invest this money into Equity and Debt again.

Draft Merchant Shipping Bill, 2020

Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways has issued a draft of the Merchant Shipping Bill, 2020 for public consultation. 

It aims to repeal and replace the Merchant Shipping Act, 1958 and the Coasting Vessels Act, 1838.

The Bill has provisions for repatriation of abandoned seafarers to improve their welfare on abandoned vessels.

The Bill does away with requirement of general trading licence for Indian vessels to promote ease of doing business. 

It also enables electronic means of registration, and grants statutory recognition to electronic agreements, records, and log-books.

The Bill has clauses to increase India’s tonnage and to make the vessel a tradeable asset.

It also seeks to introduce for the first-time statutory framework for regulating maritime emergency response against maritime incidents to promote India as a bankable shipping

jurisdiction and avoid situations leading to wreck.

To make India an active enforcement jurisdiction, the Bill incorporates powers of the Director-General to take action against vessels that are unsafe, and pose a threat to safety of life at sea and environment

It also encourages active enforcement of pollution prevention standards.

Land-attack Version of BrahMos Missile successfully test-fired

Recently, India has successfully test-fired a land-attack version of the BrahMos supersonic cruise missile from the Andaman and Nicobar Islands.

The range of the missile has been extended to 400 km from the original 290 km.

Its speed has been maintained at 2.8 Mach or almost three times the speed of sound.

The test was done in a “top-attack” configuration.

In top attack mode, the missile is required to climb sharply after launch, travel at a certain altitude and then fall on top of the target.

In direct attack mode, the missile travels at a lower altitude, directly striking the target.

Lok Virasat organised

India’s Films Division (FD) is organising Lok Virasat. 

It is a festival of films on folk art and painting.

The films being streamed include:

The Kingdom of God: It is a film on the great Indian heritage of art and culture with focus on various folk art traditions.

Bhavai – Fading Memories: A film on Bhavai which is a folk art of Gujarat.

Naman – Khele: A film on the ancient folk art performed in Ratnagiri, Maharashtra.

Sahi Jata – The Fusion Cult: A film on the unique fusion of muscle and music in the form of folk art on the back-drop of the ancient Orissa town of Puri 

Therukoothu – Dancing For Life: A film depicting the age old Tamil folk art.