मॉरिशस के प्रधानमंत्री your excellency, प्रवीन्‍द जगन्‍नाथ जी, उनकी पत्‍नी श्रीमती कविता जगन्‍नाथ जी, यूपी के राज्‍यपाल श्रीमान राम नाईक जी, केंद्रीय मंत्रिपरिषद के मेरे सहयोगी सुषमा स्‍वराज जी, मुख्‍यमंत्री श्री योगी आदित्‍यनाथ जी, हरियाणा के मुख्‍यमंत्री श्री मनोहर लाल जी, उत्‍त्‍राखंड के मुख्‍यमंत्री श्री त्रिवेंद्र सिंह रावत जी, मंत्रिपरिषद के मेरे सहयोगी और दुनिया भर से पधारे, और काशी प्रधारे मेरे प्रिय भाईयों और बहनों।

सबसे पहले आप सभी का बहुत-बहुत अभिनंदन, बहुत-बहुत स्‍वागत है। आप सभी यहां अपनी, अपने पूर्वजों की मिट्टी की महक से खींचे चले आए हैं। कल जिन्‍हें प्रवासी भारतीय सम्‍मान मिलने वाला है। उन्‍हें मैं अपनी तरफ से अग्रिम शुभकामनाएं देता हूं। आज का दिन मेरे लिए भी विशेष है। जैसा कि सुषमा जी कह रही थी, मैं आपके सामने प्रधानमंत्री के साथ-साथ काशी का सांसद होने के नाते एक मेज़बान के रूप में उपस्थित हुआ। बाबा विश्‍वनाथ और मां गंगा का आशीर्वाद आप सभी पर बना रहा मेरी यही प्रार्थना है।

साथियों, आज आपसे अपनी बात शुरू करने से पहले मैं डॉक्‍टर श्री श्री श्री शिवकुमार स्‍वामी जी के निधन पर अपना शोक व्‍यक्‍त करना चाहता हूं। तुमकुर के श्री सिद्ध गंगा मठ में मुझे कई बार उनसे आशीर्वाद लेने का अवसर मिला था। और जब भी उनसे मिलता था वो एक बेटे की तरह मुझे इतना स्‍नेह करते थे, इतना आशीर्वाद देते थे। ऐसे महान संत महाऋषि का जाना हम सभी के लिए बहुत दु:खद है, मानव कल्‍याण के लिए उनके योगदान को देश हमेशा याद रखेगा। मैं आदरपूर्वक उन्‍हें नमन करता हूं। उनको श्रद्धांजलि देता हूं।

भाईयों और बहनों, दुनियाभर में बसे आप सभी भारतीयों से संवाद का यह अभियान हम सभी के प्रिय श्रद्धेय अटल बिहार वाजपेयी जी ने शुरू किया था। अटल जी के जाने के बाद यह पहला प्रवासी भारतीय सम्‍मेलन है। इस अवसर पर मैं अटल जी को श्रद्धासुमन अर्पित करता हूं, उनकी इस विराट सोच के लिए नमन करता हूं।

साथियों, आप सभी काशी में है और इसलिए मैं काशी और आप सभी में एक समानता भी देख रहा हूं। बनारस नगरी चिरकाल से ही भारत की सांस्‍कृतिक, अध्‍यात्मिक और ज्ञान की परंपरा से दुनिया में देश का परिचय कराती रही है। आप भी अपने दिलों में भारत और भारतीयता को संजोये हुए इस धरती की ऊर्जा उससे दुनिया को परिचित करा रहे हैं। साथियों, मैं आपको भारत का Brand Ambassador मानने के साथ ही भारत के सामर्थ्‍य और भारत की क्षमताओं, देश की विशेषताओं का प्रतिनिधि भी और प्रतीक भी मानता हूं। इसलिए ही आप अभी जिस देश में भी रह रहे हैं, वहां के समाज को भी आपने अपनापन दिया है। वहां की संस्‍कृति और अर्थव्‍यवस्‍था को समृद्ध किया है। आपने ‘वसुधैव कुटुम्‍बकम’ इस भारतीय दर्शन का हमारे पारिवारिक मूल्‍यों का विस्‍तार किया है। आप सभी जिस देश में बसे हैंवहां के समाज के लगभग हर क्षेत्र में leadership के रोल में नजर आते हैं, मॉरिशस को श्री प्रवीण जगन्‍नाथ जी पूरे समर्पण के साथ आगे बढ़ा रहे हैं इसके अलावा पुर्तगाल, त्रिनाड, टोबेगो और आयरलैंड जैसे अनेक देशों को ऐसे सक्षम लोगों का नेतृत्‍व मिला है। जिनकी जड़े भारत में हैं।

साथियों, आप सभी के सहयोगसे बीते साढ़े चार वर्षों में भारत ने दुनिया में अपना स्‍वाभाविक स्‍थान पाने की दिशा में एक बड़ा कदम बढ़ाया है। पहले लोग कहते थे कि भारत बदल नहीं सकता। हमने इस सोच को ही बदल डाला है। हमने बदलाव करके दिखाया है।   

साथियों, दुनिया आज हमारी बात को, हमारे सुझावों को पूरी गंभीरता के साथ सुन भी रही है और समझ भी रही है। पर्यावरण की सुरक्षा और विश्‍व की प्रगति में भारत के योगदान को दुनिया स्‍वीकार कर रही है। संयुक्‍त राष्‍ट्र के सबसे बड़े पर्यावरण पुरस्‍कार Champions of the earth के साथ-साथ Seoul Peace Prize का मिलना इसी का परिणाम है।  

साथियों, आज भारत अनेक मामलों में दुनिया की अगुवाई करने की स्थिति में है। International solar alliance यानि ISA ऐसा ही एक मंच है। इसके माध्‍यम से हम दुनिया को one world, one sun , one grid उस तरफ ले जाना चा‍हते हैं। ये हमारे उस लक्ष्‍य का भी हिस्‍सा है जिसके तहत हम भारत की समस्‍याओं के ऐसे समाधान तैयार कर रहे हैं जिससे दूसरे देशों की मुश्किले भी हल हो सके।local solution global application के approach के साथ हम काम कर रहे हैं। Reform, perform, transform और सबका साथ-सबका विकास के सूत्र पर चलते हुए देश ने बीते साढ़े चार वर्षों में क्‍या पाया इसकी एक तस्‍वीर मैं आपके सामने रखना चाहता हूं।

आज भारत दुनिया की तेजी से बढ़ती economic ताकत है। तो sports में भी हम बड़ी शक्ति बनने की तरफ निकल पड़े हैं। आज Infrastructure के बड़े और आधुनिक संसाधन बन रहे हैं तो space के क्षेत्र में भी रिकॉर्ड बना रहे हैं।

आज हम दुनिया का सबसे बड़ा strat-up eco system है तो दुनिया की सबसे बड़ी Health care scheme आयुषमान भारत भी चला रहे हैं। आज हमारा युवा make in India के तहत रिकॉर्ड स्‍तर पर मोबाइल फोन, कार, बस, ट्रक, ट्रेन बना रहा है तो वही खेत में रिकॉर्ड अन्‍न उत्‍पादन हो रहा है। आपको मैं एक उदाहरण देता हूं।

साथियों, आप में से अनेक लोगों ने हमारे देश के एक पूर्व प्रधानमंत्री की भ्रष्‍टाचार को लेकर कही एक बात जरूर सुनी होगी। उन्‍होंने कहा था कि केंद्र सरकार दिल्‍ली से जो पैसे भेजती है उसका सिर्फ 15 प्रतिशत ही लोगों तक पहुंच पाता है। अगर दिल्‍ली से एक रुपया निकलता है तो 15 पैसा गांव में पहुंचता है, 85 पैसे छूमंतर हो जाते हें। ये एक भूतपूर्व प्रधानमंत्री ने हमारे देश में कहा था।इतने वर्ष तक देश में जिस पार्टी ने शासन किया, उसने देश को जो व्‍यवस्‍था दी थी उस सच्‍चाई को प्रधानमंत्री रहते हुए उन्‍होंने स्‍वीकार किया था। लेकिन अफसोस ये रहा कि बाद के अपने 10-15 साल के शासन में भी इस लूट को, इस लीकेज को बंद करने का प्रयास नहीं किया गया। बीमारी तो पता चला, बीमारी को स्‍वीकार भी किया लेकिन इलाज करने की दिशा में ने सोचा, न कुछ किया। देश का मध्‍यम वर्ग ईमानदारी से टैक्‍स देता रहा है और 85 प्रतिशत की ये लूट भी चलती रही है।

साथियों, अब मैं आपको आज की सच्‍चाई भी बताना चाहता हूं। हमने टेक्‍नोलॉजी का इस्‍तेमाल करके इस 85 प्रतिशत की लूट को शत-प्रतिशत खत्‍म कर दिया है। बीते साढ़े चार वर्षों में करीब-करीब 5 लाख 80 हजार करोड़ रुपये... यानि करीब-करीब 80 billion डॉलर हमारी सरकार ने अलग-अलग योजनाओं के तहत सीधे लोगों को दिए, उनके बैंक अकाउंट में ट्रांसफर किए हैं। किसी को घर के लिए, किसी को पढ़ाई के लिए, किसी को scholarship के लिए, किसी को गैस सिलेंडर के लिए, किसी को अनाज के लिए ये राशि दी गई है। अब आप अंदाज लगाइए अगर देश अपने पुराने तौर-तरीकों से ही चलता रहता होता तो आज भी इस 5 लाख 80 हजार करोड़ रुपये में से करीब-करीब साढ़े चार लाख से भी ज्‍यादा हजार करोड़... साढ़े चार लाख हजार करोड़ से ज्‍यादा... ये रकम छूमंतर हो जाती, लीक होती, अगर हम व्‍यवस्‍था में बदलाव नहीं लाते होते तो ये राशि उसी तरह लूट ली जाती जैसे पूर्व प्रधानमंत्री ने स्‍वीकार किया था कि लूटी जाती थी।  

साथियों, ये सुधार पहले भी हो सकता था लेकिन नीयत नहीं थी, इच्‍छाशक्ति नहीं थी और नीति की अपेक्षा करना जरा कठिन लगता है। हमारी सरकार अब उस रास्‍ते पर चल रही है कि सरकार द्वारा दी जाने वाली हर मदद Direct benefit transfer scheme के तहत सीधे लाभार्थी के बैंक खाते में transfer की जाए।मैं आपको एक और आंकड़ा देता हूं। पिछले साढ़े चारसाल में हमारी सरकार ने करीब-करीब 7 करोड़ ऐसे फर्जी लोगों को पहचान कर उन्‍हें व्‍यवस्‍था से हटाया है। ये 7 करोड़ लोग वो थे जो कभी जन्‍मे ही नहीं थे जो वास्‍तव में थे ही नहीं लेकिन ये 7 करोड़ लोग सरकारी सुविधाओं को लाभ ले रहे थे। कागज पर वो थे, कागज पर पैदा भी हुए,बड़े भी हुए और फायदा भी उठाते रहे।आप सोचिए पूरे ब्रिटेन में जितने लोग हैं, पूरे फ्रांस में जितने लोग हैं, पूरे इटली में जितने लोग हैं ऐसे अनेक देशों की जनसंख्‍या से ज्‍यादा तो हमारे यहां वो लोग थे जो सिर्फ कागजों में ही जी रहे थे और कागजों में ही सरकारी सुविधाओं का लाभ चला जाता था। इन 7 करोड़ फर्जी लोगों को हटाने का काम हमारी सरकार ने किया है। ये उस बदलाव की एक झलक है जो पिछले साढ़े चार वर्षों में देश में आना शुरू हुआ है।

साथियों, ये देश में हो रहे बड़े पैमाने पर हो रहे परिवर्तन की न्‍यू इंडिया के नए आत्‍मविश्‍वास की एक झांकी भर है। भारत के गौरवशाली अतीत को फिर स्‍थापित करने के लिए 130 करोड़ भारतवासियों के संकल्‍प का ये परिणाम है। और मैं आज बहुत गर्व से कहना चाहता हूं इस संकल्‍प में आप भी शामिल हैं।

साथियों, सरकार का पूरा प्रयास है कि आप सभी जहां भी रहें सुखी रहें और सुरक्षित रहें। बीते साढ़े चार वर्षों के दौरान संकट में फसे 2 लाख से ज्‍यादा भारतीयों को  सरकार के प्रयासों से दुनिया के भिन्‍न-भिन्‍न देशों में मदद पहुंचाई गई है। आपकी सोशल सिक्‍योरिटी के साथ-साथ पासपोर्ट, वीजा, पीआईओ और ओसीआई कार्ड को लेकर भी तमाम प्रक्रियाओं को आसान करने की कोशिश सरकार कर रही है। प्रवासी भारतीयों के लिए कुछ महीने पहले ही एक नया कदम भी उठाया गया है। दुनिया भर में हमारी एम्‍बेसिस और कांउसलेटस को पासपोर्ट सेवा प्रोजेक्‍ट से जोड़ा जा रहा है। इससे आप सभी के लिए पासपोर्ट सेवा से जुड़ा एक centralize system तैयार हो जाएगा। बल्कि अब तो एक कदम आगे बढ़ते हुएchip based E-passport जारी करने की दिशा में भी काम चल  रहा है।  

साथियों, पासपोर्ट के साथ-साथ वीजा से जुड़े नियमों को भी सरल किया जा रहा है। ई-वीजा की सुविधा मिलने से आपके समय की बचत भी हो रही है और परेशानियांभी कम हुई हैं। अभी भी कोई समस्‍या इसमें है तो उसके सुधार के लिए भी कदम उठाए जा रहे हैं।आप में से अनेक इस बात से भी परिचित होंगे कि हमारी सरकार ने पीआईओ कार्ड को ओसीआई कार्ड में बदलने की प्रक्रिया को भी आसान बनाया है। साथियों आप अपनी मिट्टी से भले ही दूर है, लेकिन New India के निर्माण में आपकी सक्रिय भागीदारी में.. और बढ़ोतरी होइसके लिए लगातार प्रयास चल रहे हैं। भारत में जो बदलाव आ रहा है, जो नये अवसर बन रहे हैं, उसमें आपका योगदान बहुत ज्‍यादा महत्‍वपूर्ण है। बदलते हुए इस भारत में आप Research and Development और innovation में बड़ी भूमिका निभा सकते हैं। सरकार यह भी कोशिश कर रही है कि भारत के स्‍टार्ट अप और NRI mentors को एक साथ एक प्‍लेटफॉर्म पर लाएं। Defense Manufacturing भी आपके लिए एक अहम सेक्‍टर हो सकता है।

भाईयों और बहनों मां भारती की सुरक्षा अर्थव्‍यवस्‍था के साथ-साथ अपनी आध्‍यात्मिक और सांस्‍कृतिक विरासत से भी आपका जुड़ाव और मजबूत होइसके लिए प्रवासी तीर्थ दर्शन योजना की भी शुरूआत की जा रही है। मैं इस मंच पर पहले भी कह चुका हूं, और आज फिर दोहराना चाहता हूं कि आप जिस भी देश में रहते हैं वहां से अपने आसपास के कम से कम पांच परिवार और वो भी non-Indian पांच परिवारों को भारत आने के लिए आप प्रेरित करिये। आपका यह प्रयास देश में टूरिज्‍म बढ़ाने में अहम भूमिका निभाएगा। इसी तरह आप इस वर्ष गांधी जी की 150वीं जन्‍म जयंती पर अपने देश में रहते हुए कैसे उनकी बातों को, भारत की बातों को अन्‍य लोगों तक पहुंचाएंगे। इस पर भी विचार कीजिए। पिछले दिनों सुषमा जी के नेतृत्‍व में दुनिया के कई देशों में एक अच्‍छा प्रयोग हुआ। वहां की हमारी सभी embassiesने गांधी 150 जयंती पर उस देश के कलाकारों को वैष्णव जन तो तेने कहियेगांधी जी का प्रिय भजन उनको गाने के लिए request की। you tube पर इसकी सारी video available है। आप भी हैरान हो जाएंगे कि विदेश के नागरिक, विदेश के कलाकार कितनी भक्तिभाव से वैष्णव जन तो तेने कहियेयह गा रहे हैं। एक प्रकार से गांधी ग्‍लोबल है, यह अनुभूति हम सब इसको सुनते कर सकते हैं। और इसलिए कुछ विशेष कार्यक्रम अगर आप करना चाहे तो भारतीय दूतावास embassy द्वारा भी आपकी हर संभव मदद की जाएगी। इस वर्ष हम सभी गुरूनानक देव जी की 550वीं जयंती भी मना रहे हैं। गुरुवाणी को हम कैसे दूसरे देशों के लोगों तक पहुंचाए, उन्‍हें भारत की समृद्ध सांस्‍कृतिक विरासत से उसे कैसे परिचित कराए, इस बारे में भी मैं चाहूंगा कि आप जिस भी देश में हो, कुछ न कुछ योजनाएं बननी चाहिए, कुछ न कुछ प्रयास होना चाहिए। साथियों, यह बातें सिर्फ सुझाव के तौर पर आपके सामने रख रहा हूं। मुझे पता है कि आप में से बहुत से लोग पहले से ऐसा करते आ रहे हैं, लेकिन आपसे स्‍नेह ऐसा है कि मैं खुद को रोक नहीं पाता हूं।

मैं विशेष रूप से आज उत्‍तर प्रदेश सरकार को भी बधाई देना चाहता हूं आमतौर पर किसी राज्‍य में प्रवासी भारतीय दिवस का इतना बड़ा कार्यक्रम लेना हो, दुनिया के इतने मेहमान आने वाले हो, तो उस राज्‍य को बहुत मेहनत करनी पड़ती है, बहुत योजना करनी पड़ती है। करीब-करीब एक साल उसमें लग जाता है। और एक कार्यक्रम करने के बाद एक साल थकान उतरने में चला जाता है। मैं उत्‍तर प्रदेश को इसलिए बधाई देता हूं कि कुंभ जितना बड़ा कार्यक्रम चल रहा हो, इतनी बड़ी व्‍यवस्‍था लगी हुई हो, कुंभ मेले की तैयारी में 2-3 साल लगातार काम करना पड़ता है। और मुझे संकोच हो रहा था कि कुंभ के मेले की जिम्‍मेदारी उत्‍तर प्रदेश के पास है, सारी सरकारी मशीनें उसमें व्‍यस्‍त हैं। 10 करोड़ लोग वहां आने की संभावना है। ऐसे में काशी में यह कार्यक्रम करें या न करें। मेरे मन में झिझक थी लेकिन मैं योगी जी को, उनकी पूरी टीम को, उत्‍तर प्रदेश के प्रशासन और शासन को हृदय से बधाई देता हूं कि उन्‍होंने एक साथ दो इतने बड़े कार्यक्रम इस बात ने दुनिया को इस बात का परिचय करा दिया है कि उत्‍तर प्रदेश की Government, उत्‍तर प्रदेश की bureaucracy, उत्‍तर प्रदेश के मुलाजिम यह भी दुनिया में किसी से कम नहीं है। और इसलिए मैं उनका विशेष अभिनन्‍दन करता हूं।

मैं काशीवासियों को सिर झुका करके प्रणाम करना चाहता हूं, क्‍योंकि मैंने प्रवासी भारतीय दिवस को गुजरात में भी किया हुआ है। और शायद गुजरात के मुख्‍यमंत्री कहो या आज प्रधानमंत्री के पद पर देखो, शायद हिन्‍दुस्‍तान में एक ऐसा इंसान हूं जो करीब-करीब सभी प्रवासी भारतीय दिवस के कार्यक्रम में उपस्थित रहा हूं। जब मुख्‍यमंत्री थातब भी आता था, प्रधानमंत्री के बाद तो दायित्‍व बना है। एक बार सिर्फ मैंने वीडियो कॉन्‍फ्रेंस से शरीक हुआ था, otherwise मैं physically ही जाता हूं। मैंने इतने कार्यक्रम देखे हैं। गुजरात में भी मैं मेज़बान था, लेकिन काशी ने जिस प्रकार से इस कार्यक्रम को सरकारी कार्यक्रम नहीं बनने दिया, जनता जनार्दन का कार्यक्रम बन गया, हर काशीवासी ने इसे अपना कार्यक्रम बना लिया। करीब-करीब चार सौ लोग परिवारों में ठहरे हैं और यहां की tent city का नजारा ऐसा है कि मुझे बताया गया कि कई लोग जो होटल में ठहरे थे, वो होटल छोड़ करके tent city का मजा लेने चले आए हैं। एक नया अनुभव करने के लिए चले आए। मैं समझता हूं और पिछले दो महीने से मैं लगातार देख रहा था। काशीवासियों ने काशी को एक प्रकार से ग्‍लोबल Headquarter बना दिया हो ऐसा माहौल बना दिया था। यहां आया हुआ हर मेहमान काशीवासी को लग रहा है उसके खुद के परिवार का मेहमान है। ऐसा वातावरण प्रवासी भारतीय सम्‍मेलनों में इसके पहले मैं कभी देख नहीं पाया हूं, जो काशीवासियों ने दिखाया है। और इसलिए मैं काशीवासियों को विशेष रूप से प्रणाम करता हूं। मैं स्‍थानीय administration को भी, यहां के अधिकारियों को भी हृदय से बहुत-बहुत बधाई देता हूं कि उन्‍होंने अपने बलबूते पर इतनी बड़ी व्‍यवस्‍था को चलाया, बढ़ाया और आगे बढ़ाया। और इन सबके पीछे सुषमा जी का नेतृत्‍व और उनकी पूरी टीम यह तो अभिनंदन के हकदार है ही है। काशी का गौरव बढ़ा तो यहां के सांसद के नाते मेरी खुशी जरा चार गुना ज्‍यादा बढ़ जाती है।

मेहनत आप लोगों ने की, योजना आप लोगों ने बनाई, पसीना आपने बहाया, दिनरात बिना सोये, बिना थके आप लोग चलते रहे, लेकिन लोग पीठ मेरी थपथपा रहे हैं। यह आपका प्‍यार है, आपकी मेहनत है, जिसके कारण यह संभव हुआ है और इसलिए काशी की सांसद के नाते मेरी इस कर्मभूमि के नाते मैं आज एक विशेष संतोष की अनुभूति करता हूं और मुझे विश्‍वास है कि मेरी काशी आपके माध्‍यम से फिर एक बार दुनिया के हर व्‍यक्ति के दिल में जगह बनाएगी और हर किसी को काशी आने का मन करे । मैं अंत में फिर से एक बार आप सभी का काशी में पधारने के लिए हृदय से बहुत-बहुत आभार व्‍यक्‍त करता हूं। भारत में आपका यह प्रवास सुखद रहे, इसी कामना के साथ बहुत-बहुत धन्‍यवाद करता हूं, मैं व्‍यक्तिगत रूप से प्रधानमंत्री के रूप में नहीं, सांसद के रूप में नहीं, व्‍यक्तिगत अपने आनंद के लिए पिछले एक-दो साल से कार्यक्रम कर रहा हूं। भारत में मार्च महीना एक प्रकार से exam का महीना होता है और 10वीं, 12वीं की परीक्षा यानि परिवार में सालभर एक तनाव का माहौल होता है। हर किसी को लगता है बच्‍चे को 10वीं में ज्‍यादा Marks मिले, 12वीं में ज्‍यादा Marks मिले, एक तनाव का माहौल होता है। तो मैं हमेशा कोशिश कर रहा हूं कि exam के पहले सभी बच्‍चों से, उनके parents से, उनके Guardian से, उनके अभिभावकों से, उनके teacher से मैं संवाद करूं और परीक्षा को बड़ा संकट न माने लोग इसके लिए जो भी बातें समझा सकता हूं मैं समझाऊं। मुझे खुशी है इस 29 जनवरी को मैं देशभर के और इस बार तो विदेश के लोग भी जुड़ रहे हैं। उनके बच्‍चे भी, उनके family के लोग भी नरेंद्र मोदी App के माध्‍यम से, video के माध्‍यम से जुड़ने वाले हैं। करोड़ों-करोड़ों परिवारों के साथ exam warriorsके संबंध में मैं संवाद करने वाला हूं। बच्‍चों से बातचीत करने वाला हूं और परीक्षा का तनाव बच्‍चों का न रहे इसके लिए जो भी तौर-तरीके बता सकता हूं, मैं बताने वाला हूं, 29 जनवरी, 11 बजे, मुझे विश्‍वास है कि आप भी अपने परिवार के लोगों को सूचना करेंगे कि वहां आपके परिवार के लोग भी अगर इस exam के इस कालखंड में हो तो वे भी उसका फायदा उठा सकते हैं।

मैं फिर एक बार इस भव्‍य योजना के लिए और हमारे मित्र प्रवीन्‍द जगन्‍नाथ जी का परिवार के साथ यहां आना, समय देना, इसका कार्यक्रम की शोभा बढ़ाना मैं इसके लिए उनका बहुत हृदय से आभार व्‍यक्‍त करता हूं। उनके पिता जी ने मॉरिशस को बनाने में बहुत बड़ी भूमिका अदा की है। एक प्रकार से आधुनिक मॉरिशस के वो architecture हैं। उनका भी उतना ही प्‍यार हम सब बना हुआ है। पिछले दिनों उनके पिता जी विशेष रूप से परिवार के साथ काशी की यात्रा के लिए आए थे, आज प्रवीन्‍दजी का आना हो गया, परिवार के साथ कविता जी को ले करके आए गए। मैं मानता हूं उनका भारत के प्रति जो आपार स्‍नेह हैं। वो दिनों-दिन बढ़ता चला जा रहा है। उन्‍होंने समय दिया, शोभा बढ़ाई, उनका भी आभार व्‍यक्‍त करता हूं। मैं फिर एक बार आप सब को अनेक-अनेक शुभकामनाओं के साथ बहुत-बहुत धन्‍यवाद।

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अतुल तिवारी/शाहबाज़ हसीबी/बाल्‍मीकि महतो/तारा/ममता

Read more: Text of PM’s Speech at the 15th Pravasi...

The Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi inaugurated the plenary session of the 15th edition of Pravasi Bharatiya Diwas at Deendayal Hastkala Sankul in Varanasi today.

Chief Guest of PBD 2019, Prime Minister of Mauritius, PravindJugnauth, ,Governor of Uttar Pradesh Ram Naik, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj along with UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, Chief Minister of Haryana, Manohar Lal Khattar, Chief Minister of UttarakhandTrivendra Singh Rawat, Union Minister of State for Overseas Indian Affairs Retd.General V K Singh and several other dignitaries graced the occasion.

 

 

In his address, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said it is the love and affection of the diaspora for the land of their forefathers which has brought them to India. He called upon the NRI community to join hands for building a new India.

PM lauded the role of Indian diaspora in keeping alive the tradition of VasudhaivaKutumbakam. He said the NRIs are not only the Brand Ambassadors of India but also represent its strength, capabilities and characteristics. He urged the diaspora to participate in building a New India specially in research and innovation.

PM said that with its rapid progress, India is being seen on a high pedestal across the world and is in a position to lead the global community. International Solar Alliance is one such example. Mr. Modi added that local solution and global application is our mantra. He termed International Solar Alliance as a step in the direction of One World, One Sun, One Grid.

 

 

Prime Minister said that India is on course to become a global economic powerhouse. It has one of the largest start-up ecosystems and world's largest healthcare scheme to its credit. We have moved on with great strides in Make in India. A bumper harvest production has been our major achievement.

PM lamented that due to lack of will power and proper policies of the previous Government, a large chunk of funds earmarked for them was not available for the Beneficiaries. However today, he said we have plugged the loopholes in the system with the help of technology. The loot of public money has been stopped and 85 percent of the lost money has been made available and transferred directly into the bank accounts of the beneficiaries. PM said that now Rs. 5,80000 crores has transferred directly into people's accounts over the past four and a half years.PM narrated how 7 crore fake names have been struck off the list of beneficiaries, which is almost equal to the population of Britain, France and, Italy.

PM said these are some of the glimpses of changes ushered in by his Government which reflect the New Confidence of a New India.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

PM said the diaspora is equally important in our resolve for a New India. He added that their safety is also our concern and cited how the Government took upon the challenge of evacuating more than 2 lakh Indians stranded in conflict zones.

Speaking about the welfare of Indians overseas, Mr. Modi said passport and visa rules have been simplified and e visa had made it much easier for them to travel. All PravasiBharatiya are now being linked to Passport Sewa and efforts are in to issue chip based E passport.

PM said that a Pravasi Teerth DarshanYojana is being taken up. He urged overseas Indian to invite 5 non Indian families to visit India. PM also requested them to spread the values of Gandhi ji and Guru Nanak Dev ji and become a part of their anniversary celebrations. He said that we feel proud that global community joined us in compilation of Bapu’s favourite bhajan, Vaishnava jan.

PM complimented the role of the residents of Kashi in making PBD successful with their warmth and hospitality. PM said that ahead of upcoming School Board examinations, he will interact with the parents and students through NAMO App in ParikshapeCharcha - at 11am on 29th January, 2019.

 

Chief Guest of PBD -2019, Mauritius PM, PravindJugnauth invoked the memories of Indian diaspora and their connect with the land of their forefathers. Speaking in Hindi and English, he said such gatherings reinforce the identity of overseas Indians as the members of one family with shared history and culture. He said, if India is unique, Indianness is universal. The Mauritian PM told that an educated and self reliant diaspora can play a major role in nation building and the Diaspora connect can help multilateralism.

He enthralled the crowd with his Bhojpuri dialect and announced that Mauritius will organise the first International Bhojpuri festival.

In her welcome address, External Affairs Minister said India today feels proud under the dynamic leadership of PM Modi. She thanked Indian diaspora for their linkages with the motherland. Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, Yogi Adityanath said PBD and Kumbh in Uttar Pradesh are a reflection of Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat.

Prime Minister Modi felicitated the winners of Bharat koJaniye quiz competition. This is a quiz competition on India meant for the young Indian diaspora.

Closing ceremony of PBD will be held tomorrow on January 23, 2019 where President RamnathKovind will confer PravasiBharatiyaSamman to select overseas Indians for their contributions.

After the Convention, on 24th January, the visiting diaspora delegates will visit Prayagraj for KumbhMela. They will then proceed to Delhi on 25th January and witness the Republic Day Parade at Rajpath, New Delhi.

 

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AKT/PAK/KP

 

Read more: 15th edition of Pravasi Bharatiya Diwas...

Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (BHEL) and Libcoin are in dialogue to form a world class consortium to initially build 1GWh lithium ion battery plant in India. Its capacity will be scaled up to 30GWh in due course. With this, India has finally taken steps into its energy security and clean energy commitment to the world.

BHEL will be sending a team of senior officers for study of the facilities, R&D infrastructure and other techno-commercial issues soon. Based upon the evaluation and recommendations of the team, further process towards formation of Joint Venture will be carried forward.

This project will bring energy independence by replacing oil imports with abundant renewable. This project also includes “Made by India, for India”, with focus on core-cost components manufactured domestically. It will also create integrated manufacturing ecosystem resulting in self-reliance and lower cost.

A holistic view of the supply chain in combination with cutting edge digital technologies to replace high CAPEX and high OPEX processes will be the highlight of this project in India. 

Various Indian cities including Delhi have been struggling to cut down their pollution level for last several years and electric transportation has been considered as one of the viable approaches to cut down emission. The number of electric cars in the world already hit million-mark last year and the International Energy Agency has projected almost 140 million electric cars globally by 2030, if countries meet Paris climate accord targets, in which India has already committed to actively participate.

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MM/ SB

Read more: BHEL and LIBCOIN to Build India’s First Lithium...

Chief Executive of UK Research and Innovation, Professor Mark Walport,  is on a two-day visit to Delhi, at the invitation of Principal Scientific Adviser to the Government of India, Professor K. VijayRaghavan met and addressed the Prime Minister’s Science, Technology and Innovation Advisory Council (PM-STIAC).

Chaired by Professor K. VijayRaghavan, the PM-STIAC is an overarching body that assesses specific science and technology domains in India, and formulates interventions and roadmaps. It advises the India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi on all matters of science, technology and innovation.

Professor Mark met the PM-STIAC and delivered a lecture on the creation of UK Research and Innovation (UKRI), one of the most significant reforms in the UK’s research and innovation funding landscape in the last 50 years. Launched in April 2018 as an independent, non-departmental public body, UKRI brings together the functions of the seven Research Councils, Innovate UK and a new organisation, Research England.

The PM-STIAC monitors the implementation of the Prime Minister’s vision for the nation. Speaking at the recent the 106th Indian Science Congress, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said ‘Science is universal, but tech must be local’ and coined the phrase ‘Jai Anusandhan’ , emphasising the importance of research and innovation.

In October 2018, UKRI India office celebrated a decade of India-UK research and innovation partnership, which is transformative and changing lives for people both in India and the UK, creating new shared economic opportunities through research and innovation, one of the fastest growing bilateral areas of collaboration.

Professor Mark Walport, said: “In a world that depends on science and innovation to help address shared challenges, the creation of Prime Minister’s Science, Technology and Innovation and Innovation Advisory Council comes at an exciting time for both India and its international partners.  The UKRI-India collaboration has come a long way to provide solutions through its high-quality joint programmes and to prepare for future challenges.”

Professor K. Vijay Raghavan, said: “The ultimate goal of building a prosperous society and economy can be achieved through effective quality research, innovation and policies. As most of the challenges faced today are global in nature, it is important that India effectively leverages international science and technology collaboration to address these issues. Science and technology as major drivers that help transform a nation, PM-STIAC is committed to taking India into the next era of its science excellence.”

 “The ultimate goal of building a prosperous society and economy can be achieved through effective quality research, innovation and policies. As most of the challenges faced today are global in nature, it is important that India effectively leverages international S&T collaboration to address these issues. Science and technology as major drivers that help transform a nation, PM-STIAC is committed to taking India into the next era of its science excellence.

The PM-STIAC members include Dr VK Saraswat, Member NITI Aayog, Dr AS Kiran Sharma, former Chairman ISRO, Professor Ajay Kumar Sood, IISc, Major General Madhuri Kanitkar, Dean, Armed Forces Medical College, Professor Sanghmitra Bandopadhyay, Director, Indian Statistical Institute, Professor Manjul Bhargava, Princeton University, Professor Subhash Kak, Oklahoma State University, and Shri Baba Kalyani, MD Bharat Forge.

Secretaries of most of the Indian research funding agencies, such as the Department of Agricultural Research & Education, Department of Atomic Energy, Department of Biotechnology, Department of Defence Research & Development, Department of Higher Education, Department of Science and Technology, Department of Space Indian Council of Medical Research, and Ministry of Earth Sciences are also part PM-STIAC.

Professor Mark accompanied by Dr Tim Wheeler, Director International UK Research and Innovation, will also visit three Newton-Bhabha joint research projects that highlight the joint efforts of research communities working on optimal use of agricultural nitrogen, promotion of solar energy and the effects of air pollution on human health. The Newton-Bhabha fund is a partnership that brings together UK and Indian scientists, researchers and innovators to find joint solutions to global challenges. It is delivered by 7 UK delivery partners in collaboration with their Indian counterparts through equal partnership and matched resources.

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KSP/GK/nb

Read more: Chief Executive of UK Research and Innovation...

The Vice President of India, Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu has asked young students to work to serve the less privileged and less fortunate. He said that it was very important for the younger generation to be empathetic to sufferings and struggles of fellow citizens and to strive to do something meaningful for their betterment.

Shri Naidu was interacting with a group of Students from Kerala, here today, who are in Delhi as a part of a tour programme being organized by ‘Mathrubhumi’, a Media House from Kerala, in connection with the 150th Birth Anniversary celebrations of Mahatma Gandhi.

The Vice President stressed upon the importance of education in bringing social, cultural and economical transformation in the country. He called upon students to imbibe a habit of constant learning and embrace emerging technologies to keep pace with the changing world.

Expressing concern over the rising incidence life style disease, Shri Naidu urged the students to be aware of the hidden dangers of modern life style, comprising of unhealthy food and physically dormant jobs. He asked them to develop the habit of regular physical exercise, especially practicing Yoga and dedicate time for outdoor activities, to stay healthy.  

He wanted students and the younger generation to respect nature and learn to live with nature. ‘You must keep it in mind that nature and culture together work for the betterment of humanity’, he said.

Observing that unity in diversity is India's greatest strength, Shri Naidu asked youngsters to study the History of this great country diligently and to learn to appreciate the uniqueness of Indian culture. ‘They must be aware of our country's great culture and timeless traditions and work to fortify India's spirit’, he said.

Unveiling his vision of building a strong, stable, unified, prosperous and inclusive India, the Vice President encouraged the citizens of this country to perform their duties with utmost sincerity, to the best of their capabilities.

Applauding Mathrubhumi for celebrating the 150th Birth Anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, Shri Naidu said that the Mahatma had given us the most powerful weapons of truth and non violence to defeat the greatest of odds. ‘Mahatma Gandhi’s vision of service and humanism has inspired and motivated generations of world leaders’, he added.

The Vice President said that Gandhiji was an inspiration to all mankind.  Speaking of Gandhiji’s deep sense of compassion and inclusiveness that defined his outlook, Shri Naidu said that the Mahatma truly believed that cleansing our inner being of all evils was as important as cleansing our countries of servitude.

Expressing great pride at the Indian civilization that has always considered the world as one family, (Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam), the Vice President said that our commitment to the cause of climate change, solar energy and conserving nature, will hopefully, get reflected in educating students and making them globally responsible citizens.

Urging the students to speak only in their mother tongues at home, the Vice President asked them to always remember with love and gratitude the Mother, Mother tongue, Motherland, Birth place and Guru.

 

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AKT/BK/MS/RK

Read more: Young people must strive to serve the less...

Honourable Ministers and Excellencies from various countries, representatives and delegates from partner countries, corporate leaders, invitees, participants and delegates, dignitaries on the dais, young friends, Ladies & Gentlemen!

I am delighted to welcome you to the 9th Chapter of the Vibrant Gujarat Summit.

As you can see,this has now become a truly global event. One that has space for everyone.It has dignityof the presence of senior political leadership.It has the energyof CEOs and Corporate Leaders. It has the gravitas of Institutions and opinion makers, andit has the vitality of young enterprise and start-ups.

Vibrant Gujarat has contributed to the confidence building of our enterprises. It has also helped in capacity building and adoption of global best practices, by government agencies.

I wish you all, a productive, fruitful, and enjoyable Summit.In Gujarat, this is the season of the kite festivalor Uttarayan. Amid the busy schedule of this Summit, I hope you shall be able to take some time out to enjoy the sights and sounds of the festivities, and the State.

I particularly welcome and thank the 15 Partner Countriesof this edition of Vibrant Gujarat.

I also thank the 11 Partner Organisations,and all those Countries, Organisations and Institutions who are holding their Seminars at this Forum.It is also a matter of satisfaction, that eight Indian States have come forward to make use of this Forum to high-light their respective investment opportunities.

I hope you shall find time to visit the Global Trade Show, which is remarkable in its scale, and range of world-class products, processes and technologies.In fact,Gujarat represents the best of business spirit, which exists in India. This eventhas further sharpenedthe edge which Gujarat had since several decades.The Vibrant Gujarat Summit has had a transformational journeyof eight successful editions.

A number of conventions and seminarshave been organised on various topics. These issues are of importanceto Indian Society and Economyas well as, the entire Global Community.By way of examplelet me mention the celebration of Africa Day tomorrowand the Global Conclave of International Chambers on 20th January.

Friends,

Assembled here today, is a truly augustgathering.We are honoured bythe presence of many Heads of State and Government andseveral other distinguished delegates. This shows that international bilateral cooperation is no longer limited to national capitals, but now extends to our State capitals as well.

In India,as in most emerging economies, our challenge is to grow horizontally as well as vertically.

Horizontally,we have to spread the benefits of development to regions and communities that have lagged behind.

Vertically,we have to meet enhanced expectations in terms of quality of life, quality of services and quality of infrastructure.We are well awarethat our achievements, here in India, will directly impact one sixth of humanity.

Friends,

Those who visit India regularlywould have felt a change in the air.The change is both in terms of direction and intensity.Over the last four years,the focus of my Government has been to reduce Government and enhance Governance. The mantra of my Government has been Reform, Perform, Transform andfurther Perform.

We have taken a number of drasticsteps. We have also undertaken deeper structural reforms which have added strengthto our economy and nation.

As we have done so, we continued to remain one of the fastest growing major Economies in the world. Major international Financial Institutionslike the World Bank and the IMFas well as agencies like Moody’s have expressed confidence in India’s economic journey.

We have focused on removing the barrierswhich were preventing us from achieving our full potential. We will continue the pace and process of reforms and de-regulation.

Friends.

India is now ready for business as never before. We have made Doing Business Easier.

In the last four years, we have jumped 65places in the Global Ranking of World Bank’s Doing Business Report.

From 142 in 2014 to 77 now, butwe are still not satisfied. I have asked my team to work harder so that India is in the top 50 next year.I want our regulations and processes to compare with the best in the world.We have also made Doing Business cheaper.

The historic implementation of Goods and Services Tax and other measures of simplification and consolidation of taxes havereduced transaction costs andmade processes efficient.

We have also made Doing Business Faster through digital processes, online transactions and single point inter-faces.

In FDI Foreign Direct Investment, we are one of the most open countries now. Most of the sectors of our economy are now only open for FDI. More than 90 percent approvals have been put on automatic route. Such measures have propelled our economy into a high growth path. In the last four years, we have received FDI worth 263 billion Dollars. This is 45 percent of the FDI received in last 18 years.

And Friends, We have also made Doing Business Smarter. We are insisting on IT based transactions in procurement and purchases of Government. Digital payments including direct transfer of government benefits is now under full implementation. We are among the largest eco-systems in the world for start-ups and a number of them have come up in the field of technology. I can therefore safely say that doing business with us is a great opportunity.

This is also because we are among the top 10 FDI destinations listed by UNCTAD. Ours is a globally cost competitive manufacturing environment.We have a vast pool of skilled professionals with knowledge and energy. We have a world class engineering education base and strong Research and Development facilities. Rise in GDP, a rising middle class and their purchasing power is creating further growth in our huge domestic market. In the last two years,we have moved towards a low tax regimeon the corporate side. We have lowered the tax from 30 % to 25 % for new investments as well as small and-medium ventures.On IPR issues, we have evolved benchmarking policies. Now, we are one of the fastest trademark regimes.The Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code nowgives businesses an exit window without the burden of long legal and financial battles.

Thus, from the start of business to its operation and closure, we have paid attention in building new institutions, processesand procedures. All this is important, not just for doing business but also for ease of life of our people. We also understand that being a young nation, we need to create job opportunities and better infrastructure. Both are linked with investments. Therefore, in recent years, there has been unprecedented focus on manufacturing and infrastructure.

We have worked hard to promote manufacturing to create jobs for our youth. Investments through our “Make in India” initiative, have been well supported by programmes like ‘Digital India’ and ‘Skill India’. Our focus also includes bringing our industrial infrastructure, policies and practices to best global standards and to convert India into a global manufacturing hub.

Cleaner energy and greener development. Zero defect and Zero effect manufacturing.These are also our commitments. We have committed to the world to work towards reducing the effects of climate change. On the energy front, we are now the fifth largest producer of renewable energy in the world.  We are fourth largest in Wind Energyand fifth largest producer of Solar Energy.

We are keen to scale up investments in next generation infrastructureincluding roads, ports, railways, airports, telecom, digital networks and energy. We are also investing heavily in our social, industrial and agri-infrastructure to give better income and quality of life to our people. To give some examples,in four years there has been maximum capacity addition & generation of electricity.For the first time, India has become a net exporter of electricity. We have distributed LED Bulbs on a massive scale. This has resulted in huge energy savings.We have installed transmission lines at an unprecedented pace. Our speed in road construction has almost doubled. We have done unprecedented capacity addition in major ports. Rural road connectivity is now 90 %.  The speed of setting up new rail lines, gauge conversion, doubling and electrification of railway tracks has also doubled.  We are debottlenecking execution of major projectson a regular basis through an online process.Our Public Private Partnership regime for infrastructure has been made more investor friendly.At 7.3%,the average GDP growth, over the entire term of our Governmenthas been the highest of any Indian Government since 1991.At the same time,the rate of inflation at4.6 % is the lowest for any Indian Government since 1991, when India began its process of liberalization.

We believe that fruits of development must reach people with ease and efficiency.

To give you a few examples, now we have a bank account for every family. We are giving loans to small enterprises without collateral. We now have electricity in every village.     We also have electricityin almost all households now. We have given cooking gas to large numbers of people who were not able to afford it so far. We have ensured that there is proper sanitation in all areas - both urban and rural. We are working towards full coverage of toilets for householdsand their proper use.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

We were among the highest growing tourist destinationsin the world in 2017. India had a growth of 14 percent over 2016,while the world grew at an average of 7 percent in the same year.We have also been the fastest growing aviation market in the world, with double-digit growth in passenger ticketing terms,for over four years.

Thusa New India is emergingwhich will be modern and competitiveand yet caring and compassionate. An example of this compassionis our Medical Assurance Scheme called Ayushman Bharat.This will benefit about 500 million people – which is more than the population of United States, Canada and Mexico combined. Ayushman Bharat will provide immense investment opportunitiesin the areas of health infrastructure, medical equipment manufacturing, and healthcare services.

Let me list some more examples.50 cities in India are ready to build Metro Rail Systems. We have to build 50 million houses. The requirement of road, rail and waterways is enormous. We want world-classtechnologies to achieve our goal in a faster and cleaner way.

Friends, India is thus, a land of immense opportunities. It is the only place, which offers you Democracy, Demography and Demand.To those who are already present in India,I would like to assure you that our democratic system, human values andstrongjudicial system will ensure the safety and security of your investments. We are continuously workingto improve the investment climate further and make ourselves more and more competitive.

For those who are not yet present in India,I extend an invitation and encourage you to explore the opportunities. This is the best time to be here.We have set up dedicated ways to help investors on a one to one basis.Above allI assure you that I will be always available to hold your hands in your journey.

Thank You!Thank you very much. Thanks a lot.

*****

 

AKT/KP

Read more: Text of PM’s speech at the inauguration of 9th...

 

          The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has been approved the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between India and France on technical bilateral cooperation in the field of new and renewable energy. The MoU was signed on 3rd October, 2018.

Salient Features

          India and France aim to establish the basis for a cooperative institutional relationship to encourage and promote technical bilateral cooperation on new and renewable issues on the basis of mutual benefit, equality and reciprocity. The technical cooperation will cover joint research working groups, pilot projects, capacity building programs, study tour, case studies and the sharing of experience/expertise.

Benefits

          The MoU will help in strengthening bilateral cooperation between India and France.

AKT

Read more: Cabinet approves MoU between India and France on...

Power Minister administers oath of Office to new CERC Member Shri Indu Shekhar Jha

Shri Lalchharliana Pachuau appointed as Member Joint Electricity Regulatory Commission for Manipur and Mizoram

Shri R K Singh, Union Minister of State (IC) for Power and New & Renewable Energy administered the oath of Office and Secrecy to Shri Indu Shekhar Jha here today. Shri Jha was appointed Member of Central Electricity Regulatory Commission (CERC) vide Order dated 4.1.2019. Prior to this, he was holding the post of CMD, Powergrid Corporation of India Ltd (PGCIL) since 2015.

 

In addition, Shri Lalchharliana Pachuau was appointed as Member, Joint Electricity Regulatory Commission for Manipur and Mizoram from Mizoram side. Shri Pachuau has been appointed for a period of five years or till the age of 65 years whichever is earlier in accordance with the provisions in the Memorandum of Agreement signed by the State Governments of Manipur and Mizoram. He has worked as Chief (Engg) in JERC for Manipur & Mizoram since July 2013.

 

About CERC:

The Central Electricity Regulatory Commission (CERC) had been established by the Government of India under the provisions of the Electricity Regulatory Commissions (ERC) Act, 1998. CERC is the Central Commission for the purposes of the Electricity Act, 2003 which has repealed the ERC Act, 1998. The Commission consists of a Chairperson and four other Members including Chairperson, Central Electricity Authority who is the ex-officio Member of the Commission.

Major functions of CERC under the Act, inter-alia, are –

 

  • to regulate the tariff of generating companies owned or controlled by the Central Government,
  • to regulate the tariff of other generating companies having a composite scheme for generation and sale of electricity in more than one State,
  • to regulate the inter-State transmission of electricity and to determine tariff for such transmission of electricity, etc.

 

Under the Act, CERC shall also advise the Central Government on-

 

  • formulation of National Electricity Policy and Tariff Policy;
  • promotion of competition, efficiency and economy in activities of electricity industry;
  • promotion of investment in electricity industry; and
  • any other matter referred to the Central Commission by the Government.

 About JERC:

The Central Government constituted Joint Electricity Regulatory Commission (JERC) for Manipur and Mizoram in pursuance of provisions of the Electricity Act, 2003 and the Memorandum of Agreement signed by the State Governments of Manipur and Mizoram, authorizing Government of India to constitute a JERC on their behalf.  It is a two-Member Commission, each Member representing the respective participating State. The Central Government appoints the Members of the Commission from Manipur and Mizoram sides under the provisions of the Act and in pursuance of MoA.

 

The major functions of the Commission under the Act, inter-alia, are-

 

  • to regulate the tariff for generation, supply, transmission and wheeling of electricity, whole sale, bulk or retail as the case may be within the State;
  • to regulate the electricity purchase of distribution licensees,
  • facilitate intra-state transmission and wheeling of electricity;
  • issue licenses to transmission licensees, distribution licensees and electricity traders;
  • promote cogeneration and generation of electricity from renewable sources of energy and
  • adjudicate upon the disputes between the licensees and generating companies, etc.

 

 

*****

RCJ/MS

Read more: Power Minister administers oath of Office to new...

The Vice President of India, Shri M Venkaiah Naidu has said that India never was an aggressor and attacked any country despite being known as Vishwaguru once upon a time and always believed in the philosophy of "Sarve Janah Sukhino Bhavantu".

Addressing the gathering after releasing a book titled  'India’s Ocean Neighborhood: Narendra Modi’s Strategy Initiatives' written by academician and Chancellor of Central University of Kerala, Prof. S.V. Seshagiri Rao in Hyderabad today, he said that the book was a timely treatise on the multi-dimensional importance of the Indian Ocean region for India, particularly in terms of national security and economic growth.

He said the book brought out several initiatives taken by the Indian Government with a long-term vision to protect India’s maritime interests and strengthen the security in the wake of a hegemonic threat to the region.

The Vice President lauded the efforts of government under the leadership of Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi for promoting India’s interest at the global stage and for leveraging diplomacy effectively.

Saying that history tells us that India once had a dominant presence in the Indian Ocean region, Shri Naidu opined that time has come for India to recapture its past glory and assert its role on the world stage.

India was now being recognized and respected by the world for its reforms, economic growth and development, he said and referred to the support India was receiving in its bid to become a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council.

The Vice President said that an initiative such as the International Solar Alliance initiated by India brought 121 countries together to work for and efficient exploitation of solar energy to reduce dependence on fossil fuels and also to promote sustainable development. He said that the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) declaring 21 June, as International Yoga day was a great recognition given to India and its ancient art form Yoga.

Shri Naidu urged the younger generation to read the book written by Prof. Seshagiri Rao to understand the importance of ocean security. Even to pursue the philosophy of ‘Sarve Jana Sukhino Bhavanthu’, ocean security was vital, he added.

***

AKT/RK

Following is the text of Vice President’s address (Please find the attachment)

“  

The book India’s Ocean Neighbourhood: Narendra Modi’s Strategy Initiatives  is a timely treatise on the multi-dimensional importance of the Indian Ocean region for India, particularly in terms of national security and economic growth.

It mentions how the NDA Government led by Shri Narendra Modi took several initiatives with a long-term vision to protect India’s maritime interests and strengthen the security in the wake of a hegemonic threat to the region.

With the Indian Ocean continuing to play a vital role, the relations with Mauritius were further strengthened and development of infrastructure in far away oil rich Agalega Island was taken up by India. In 2016, steps were initiated to develop Chabahar port of Iran to extricate the land-locked Afghanistan from the stranglehold of Pakistan. The logistical agreement signed with Oman in 2018 facilitates the use of port of Duqm by Indian Navy and Omani airbases by Indian Air Force.

As regards, maritime boundary, the book points out that India has maritime boundary with seven countries and unless it was decided upon we cannot exactly delineate the EEZ and Continental Shelf. While India entered into maritime boundary treaties with Sri Lanka, Maldives, Indonesia, Thailand and Myanmar through bilateral negotiations, the maritime boundary issue with Bangladesh was referred to International Tribunal and India had lost the case. As a result India had forfeited nearly 20,000 sq.km of EEZ in Bay of Bengal. The maritime boundary with Pakistan is yet to be settled because of Sir Creek boundary dispute.

The book also focused on the geographical advantages of Andaman & Nicobar and Lakshadweep archipelagoes as potential strategic assets.

I am glad that the government also initiated a 10-year naval infrastructure development package for the Andamans.

History tells us that India once had a dominant presence in the Indian Ocean region and the time has India to recapture its past glory and assert its role on the world stage.

I would also like to compliment Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi for effectively leveraging diplomacy to protect India’s interests. As a result of the intensified diplomatic efforts led by him, India is being recognized and respected world over. The flow of foreign investments also has increased in the wake of the economic reforms initiated by the Government.

India also has jumped to the 77th place in the ‘Ease of Doing Business’ index and our economy is the fastest growing lafge economy in the world today.

It might be relevant to mention here that in a profile written in the Time magazine,  the former US President Barack Obama had described Shri Modi as “reformer-in-chief”.

Indians getting elected to multilateral fora and International bodies such as International Court of Justice and others is an indication of the growing popularity of the nation on the global stage. Many countries have expressed support to India’s bid for a permanent seat in the United Nations Security Council..

Shri Modi also played a prominent role in promoting the International Solar Alliance, which brought 121 countries together to work for efficient exploitation of solar energy, reduce dependence on fossil fuels and promote sustainable development. The United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) declaring 21 June, as International Yoga day was also a great recognition for India and its ancient art form Yoga.

It should be remembered that India always believed in the philosophy of ‘Sarve Jana Sukhino Bhavanthu’ and never attacked anybody although it was known as “Vishwaguru’ once upon time.

Jai Hind!”                        

 

Read more: India was never an aggressor, always propagated...

Air pollution is one of the biggest global environmental challenges of today. A time bound national level strategy for pan India implementation to tackle the increasing air pollution problem across the country in a comprehensive manner in the form of National Clean Air Programme (NCAP) was today launched by Union Minister of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Dr. Harsh Vardhan in New Delhi.

“Collaborative and participatory approach involving relevant Central Ministries, State Governments, local bodies and other Stakeholders with focus on all sources of pollution forms the crux of the Programme.” said the Union Environment Minister.Dr Harsh Vardhan further informed that taking into account the available international experiences and national studies, the tentative national level target of 20%–30% reduction of PM2.5 and PM10 concentration by 2024 is proposed under the NCAP taking 2017 as the base year for the comparison of concentration. “Overall objective of the NCAP is comprehensive mitigation actions for prevention, control and abatement of air pollution besides augmenting the air quality monitoring network across the country and strengthening the awareness and capacity building activities.” the minister further added.

 

CEO NITI Aayog , Shri Amitabh Kant who was also present at the launch said that NCAP is a path breaking initiative and one of the most critical and most significant programme as it addresses one of the most alarming challenges of urbanization i.e. air pollution. “Today cities occupy just 3% of the land, but contribute to 82% of GDP and responsible for 78% of Carbon dioxide emissions; cities though are engines of growth and equity but they have to be sustainable and it is in this context that NCAP being a very inclusive program holds special relevance.” said Shri Kant.

 

The NCAP will be a mid-term, five-year action plan with 2019 as the first year. However, the international experiences and national studies indicate that significant outcome in terms of air pollution initiatives are visible only in the long-term, and hence the programme may be further extended to a longer time horizon after a mid-term review of the outcomes. The approach for NCAP includes collaborative, multi-scale and cross-sectoral coordination between the relevant central ministries, state governments and local bodies. Dovetailing of the existing policies and programmes including the National Action Plan on Climate Change (NAPCC) and other initiatives of Government of India in reference to climate change will be done while execution of NCAP.

 

There will be use of the Smart Cities program to launch the NCAP in the 43 smart cities falling in the list of the 102 non-attainment cities. The NCAP is envisaged to be dynamic and will continue to evolve based on the additional scientific and technical information as they emerge. The NCAP will be institutionalized by respective ministries and will be organized through inter-sectoral groups, which include, Ministry of Road Transport and Highway, Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas, Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, Ministry of Heavy Industry, Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, Ministry of Agriculture, Ministry of Health, NITI Aayog, CPCB, experts from the industry, academia, and civil society. The program will partner with multilateral and bilateral international organizations, and philanthropic foundations and leading technical institutions to achieve its outcomes.

City specific action plans are being formulated for 102 non-attainment cities identified for implementing mitigation actions under NCAP. Cities have already prepared action plans in consultation with CPCB. Institutional Framework at Centre and State Level comprising of Apex Committee at the Ministry of Environment Forest and Climate Change in the Centre and at Chief Secretary Level in the States are to be constituted.

In addition, sectoral working groups, national level Project Monitoring Unit, Project Implementation Unit, state level project monitoring unit, city level review committee under the Municipal Commissioner and DM level Committee in the Districts are to be constituted under NCAP for effective implementation and success of the Programme.

 

Other features of NCAP include, increasing number of monitoring stations in the country including rural monitoring stations, technology support, emphasis on awareness and capacity building initiatives, setting up of certification agencies for monitoring equipment, source apportionment studies, emphasis on enforcement, specific sectoral interventions etc.

 

The launch ceremony was attended by more than 150 participants representing central and state governments, industries, national & international organizations, Universities and research institutes from across the country.

The list of 102 cities chosen for this intervention is as follows:

 

Non-Attainment cities with respect to Ambient Air Quality India
(2011-2015) and WHO report 2014/2018

 

Sl. No

State

Cities Sl. No

Cities

1

Andhra Pradesh

  1.  

Guntur

  1.  

Kurnool

  1.  

Nellore

  1.  

Vijaywada

  1.  

Vishakhapatnam

2

Assam

  1.  

Guwahati

  1.  

Nagaon

  1.  

Nalbari

  1.  

Sibsagar

  1.  

Silchar

3

Chandigarh

  1.  

Chandigarh

4

Chattisgarh

  1.  

Bhillai

  1.  

Korba

  1.  

Raipur

5

Delhi

  1.  

Delhi

6

Gujarat

  1.  

Surat

  1.  

Ahmedabad

7

Himachal Pradesh

  1.  

Baddi

  1.  

Damtal

  1.  

Kala Amb

  1.  

Nalagarh

  1.  

Paonta Sahib

  1.  

Parwanoo

  1.  

Sunder Nagar

8

Jammu & Kashmir

  1.  

Jammu

  1.  

Srinagar

9

Jharkhand

  1.  

Dhanbad

10

Karnataka

  1.  

Bangalore

  1.  

Devanagere

  1.  

Gulburga

  1.  

Hubli-Dharwad

11

Madhya Pradesh

  1.  

Bhopal

  1.  

Dewas

  1.  

Indore

  1.  

Sagar

  1.  

Ujjain

  1.  

Gwalior

12

Maharashtra

  1.  

Akola

  1.  

Amravati

  1.  

Aurangabad

  1.  

Badlapur

  1.  

Chandrapur

  1.  

Jalgaon

  1.  

Jalna

  1.  

Kolhapur

  1.  

Latur

  1.  

Mumbai

  1.  

Nagpur

  1.  

Nashik

  1.  

Navi Mumbai

  1.  

Pune

  1.  

Sangli

  1.  

Solapur

  1.  

Ulhasnagar

13

Meghalaya

  1.  

Byrnihat

14

Nagaland

  1.  

Dimapur

  1.  

Kohima

15

Orissa

  1.  

Angul

  1.  

Balasore

  1.  

Bhubneshwar

  1.  

Cuttack

  1.  

Rourkela

  1.  

Talcher

16

Punjab

  1.  

DeraBassi

  1.  

Gobindgarh

  1.  

Jalandhar

  1.  

Khanna

  1.  

Ludhiana

  1.  

NayaNangal

  1.  

Pathankot/Dera Baba

  1.  

Patiala

  1.  

Amritsar

17

Rajasthan

  1.  

Alwar

  1.  

Jaipur

  1.  

Jodhpur

  1.  

Kota

  1.  

Udaipur

18

Tamilnadu

  1.  

Tuticorin

19

Telangana

  1.  

Hydrabad

  1.  

Nalgonda

  1.  

Patencheru

20

Uttar Pradesh

  1.  

Agra

  1.  

Allahabad

  1.  

Anpara

  1.  

Bareily

  1.  

Firozabad

  1.  

Gajraula

  1.  

Ghaziabad

  1.  

Jhansi

  1.  

Kanpur

  1.  

Khurja

  1.  

Lucknow

  1.  

Muradabad

  1.  

Noida

  1.  

Raebareli

  1.  

Varanasi

21

Uttarakhand

  1.  

Kashipur

  1.  

Rishikesh

22

West Bengal

  1.  

Kolkata

23

Bihar

  1.  

Patna

  1.  

Gaya

  1.  

Muzaffarpur

 

***

GK

Read more: Government launches National Clean Air Programme...

‘Development of rural areas should not erode their unique identities but must fortify their spirits. The facilities in villages must resemble those of a city but the soul and the values of Indian villages, must be preserved’, the Vice President of India Shri. M. Venkaiah Naidu said today. He was addressing the gathering at the presentation ceremony of AICTE-ECI-ISTE Chhatra Vishwakarma Awards and AICTE- SAGY Initiative awards in New Delhi today.

 

Shri. Naidu said that the Awards would challenge young students to come up with novel ideas that have great potential to impact life in villages through technological interventions at the grass root level. Expressing his agreement with Mahatma Gandhi’s statement that ‘the future of India lies in its villages’, the Vice President said that development of villages is an essential precondition to development of the nation.

 

The Vice President said that educational institutions must re-orient their curricula to ensure that students spend time in rural areas, interacting with people and understanding their problems.

 

The Vice President opined that by steering itself towards eco friendly industrialisation, sustainable urbanisation, and inclusion of the rural economy, India has the potential to not only become the world’s fastest growing economy, but also to serve as an inspiration, a model to the world

 

Expressing disappointment that our vision for development is still largely urban centric, Shri. Naidu lamented that rural India still lagged behind urban India in terms of crucial development indicators.

 

Highlighting the importance of redeeming our agriculture sector which is still the main stay of rural economy, the Vice President said that we have to constantly innovate and reinvent our agricultural practices to make farming much more rewarding, profitable and sustainable.

 

Shri. Naidu said that 'One size fits all' approach will not ensure development in a vast and diverse country like India. ‘Every village has its own individuality, its own industries & its own developmental needs. Our plans should capture aspirations of the people, leverage their strengths & mitigate their weaknesses’, he reasoned.

 

Expressing his firm conviction that development and environmental conservation are not mutually exclusive goals but are complimentary, the Vice President urged young technocrats to consider the environmental cost of their innovations on a priority basis while calculating feasibility. ‘We can no longer afford to neglect our ecological footprint’, he warned.

 

Expressing his anguish at the dual challenges of malnutrition and hidden hunger on one hand and obesity and lifestyle diseases on the other, that India faces today, Shri. Naidu urged young people to maintain a balanced diet and lead a healthy life style. ‘Only a healthy nation can be a wealthy nation’, he added.

 

Calling for balanced development, the Vice President said that our approach to development must have a dual focus, it must be comprehensive and must keep both urban and rural realities in view. He added that our urban spaces were becoming increasingly congested and suggested that distress migration could be prevented by providing livelihood, connectivity, health services, infrastructure and avenues for recreation in rural areas.

 

The Vice President said that 3 ‘D’s - Demography, Demand and Democracy are making the India of today outshine other countries in the world and added that he had full faith in the vision and capabilities of India’s youth who make up 65% of the country’s population.

 

He congratulated the All India Council of Technical Education’s endeavour to catalyse rural development in association with the Engineering Council of India (ECI) and the Indian Society for Technical Education (ISTE).

 

********

AKT/BK/MS/RK

The following is the full text of the speech:

I am delighted to present the AICTE-ECI-ISTE Chhatra Vishwakarma Awards and AICTE SAGY Initiative awards to those passionate young students who have showcased their ideas in tune with the theme of ‘Empowerment of villages through Technologies’.

I am also delighted to know that faculty mentors have worked hard to counsel these students to convert their brilliant and innovative ideas into feasible, functional prototypes.

I am happy to note that AICTE, in association with ECI and ISTE, have conceived the Chhatra Vishwakarma awards for challenging our young students to come up with novel ideas that have great potential to impact life in our villages through technological interventions at the grass root level.

In the Rigveda, the most ancient of all Vedas, Lord Vishwakarma is revered as the deity who is the original creator, architect and divine engineer of the universe.

I hope that this event, named after the creative genius Vishwakarma, will inspire each and every one of you to conceive ingenious new ideas and technologies and create inventive and innovative solutions to pressing problems at hand.

My dear young friends,

Mahatma Gandhi, the father of our nation once remarked that the future of India lies in its villages.

I am in full agreement with this statement.

Development will be a distant and unfulfilled dream, until we realize that the development of villages is an essential precondition to development of the nation.

I am immensely pleased to know that our educational institutions have begun to realize that the key to India’s prosperity lies in our villages.

I have always maintained that students should be encouraged to spend time in rural areas, interacting with people and understanding the problems that they face.

Interventions from educational institutions which are often the fountainheads of innovation can dramatically transform the rural landscape and find solutions to the most crucial issues.

I have been personally associated with the welfare of villages and villagers all through my public life.

The development of villages is an issue that is very close to my heart.

I applaud the efforts of those Institutes which have been awarded the AICTE-SAGY Initiative award.

I congratulate AICTE for having taken this momentous step at time when we are working tirelessly to improve the plight of our villages.

It is heartening to note that AICTE, which is the regulator for technical education in India, is spreading its wings to become a facilitator for the development of the nation.

Dear Students,

I believe that India has the potential to not only become the world’s fastest growing economy, but also to serve as an inspiration, a model to the world.

But in order to achieve this coveted goal, India must steer itself towards eco friendly industrialisation, sustainable urbanisation, and inclusion of the rural economy.

According to census 2011, nearly 69% of our population lives in rural areas.

The socio-economic census data, 2011 says that almost 73% of the households are in rural areas.

Yet unfortunately, our vision for development is still largely urban centric.

Rural India still lags far behind urban India in terms of crucial development indicators.

Rural economy is still characterized by lack of sufficient amenities such as clean water, health, education and a dearth of employment opportunities.

Insufficient banking, communication, technology, market and warehousing facilities continue to plague rural agriculture and industry.

Rural society still faces challenges of poverty, gender inequality and rampant discrimination.

Though we have made considerable progress in the sphere of rural development, much more needs to be done to make rural India economically, socially and politically empowered.

Since agriculture is still the main stay of the rural economy, we have to constantly innovate and reinvent our agricultural practices in tune with the realities of diminishing natural resources and changing weather and rainfall patterns.

Students of agriculture, engineering and allied sciences must spend more time in agricultural fields to device solutions to improve productivity and sustainability of our agriculture.

There is nothing more important than ensuring food security for our people.

Your innovations need not be ground breaking and transformative, they could very well be incremental and basic.

If they are able to solve real problems I am sure that they will survive, sustain and flourish.

Our Government is doing its best to promote innovations through a variety of programs and schemes. I hope that these initiatives serve as launch pads for young, budding inventors and scientists such as yourself.

My dear young friends,

India is a vast and diverse country. One size fits all programs and policies will not ensure development in India.

Every state, every village, has its own individuality, its own traditional crafts and industries and its own very special set of developmental needs. The people in villages have a certain unique set of skills and capabilities.

When we plan for development, these factors must be taken into consideration. In essence, the plan should capture the aspirations of the people, leverage their strengths and mitigate their weaknesses.

Development is not necessarily building sky scrapers. It could very well be empowering the local craftsmen and entrepreneurs and enabling small and medium industries.

It has been found that small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) account for 45% of industrial value addition and 40% of the workforce.

Thus development of rural areas should not erode their unique identities but must fortify their spirits.

The amenities in villages must resemble those of a city but the soul and the values of Indian villages, must be preserved.

My dear students,

There is a lot of indiscretion and arbitrariness in the way we consume natural resources today.

It has been found that at our current population and rate of resources consumption, we need 1.5 Earths to survive.

Therefore, I urge each and every one of you to consider the environmental cost of your inventions and innovations on a priority basis when you measure their feasibility.

We can no longer afford to neglect our ecological foot print.

I do not believe that development and environmental conservation are mutually exclusive goals.

With focus on green and clean sources of energy, reduction in consumption and efficient waste management, we can very well make our villages hubs of progress as well as sanctuaries for thriving ecosystems.

Let me remind you that our country is on a relentless quest to maximize our renewable energy potential and has recently increased its previous 2022 capacity target for renewable energy from 175GW to 227.6 GW.

The brunt of global warming and changing weather patterns including unseasonal rains, flood and drought are borne mostly by the poor and the marginalized, especially the farmers.

I therefore urge you to give clean energy a place of paramount importance in your technological innovations.

Ours is a vast country with complex challenges but infinite opportunities.

Urban India is witnessing Industrial revolution 4.0. However, I must impress upon you that in the hinterlands of the country one can find industry 1.0, 2.0 and 3.0 co-existing.

You as technocrats must be flexible enough to adapt your innovations to suits the needs of all these various phases of the Industrial Revolution.

My dear young friends,

I must not fail to impress upon you that in our bid to develop rural India, we must not falter in our attempts to facilitate the development of urban India.

With 34% of the population living in cities, urban India is already the world’s second largest country.

Hundreds of millions more migrate to India’s cities.

Yet, only 10 cities have metro rail and 15 more have metro construction in the pipeline.

Much more investment is needed for improved mobility, connectivity and ease of living in urban areas.

Our approach to development must have a dual focus.

It must be comprehensive and must keep both urban and rural realities in view.

At this point in time, India as a Nation stands at cross roads of resurgence.

While most developed nations are aging, India stands out with its rich demographic dividend having 50% population below 25 years. In terms of sheer number, it translates to 65 Cr young and energetic citizens.

We are an emerging market and we are deeply committed to upholding our constitution and democratic values.

These three ‘D’s - Demography, Demand and Democracy- is what is making the India of today outshine other countries in the world.

My dear friends,

It was heartening to know that more than 1600 teams from across the India participated in this event with contribution of nearly 1700 girl students across all teams.

I have been informed that this event was conceptualized in year 2017 and this is the second year of its execution. I am extremely happy to note that the number of teams that have been shortlisted for the national convention has already doubled this year.

The AICTE –SAGY Initiative award will definitely inspire all the higher educational institutions in the country who wish to participate in Unnat Bharat Abhiyan.

I would only like to re-iterate that the collective vigour and energy of our young minds is the force that is  catalysing the resurgence of India.

Excellence should be our goal- our Mantra. We owe it to the billion dreams that propel our country forward to be a global leader in all respect.

I hope that you will keep learning, innovating and inspiring.

I have great faith in your vision and in your capabilities.

I wish you all great success in your endeavours to make India the world capital of knowledge, wisdom and wealth.

Jai Hind!

 

Read more: Development of villages is an essential...

Foundation stone for 400/220/132 kV POWERGRID Sitamarhi Sub-station laid

The Sub-station will supply power to Sitamarhi, Darbhanga, Madhubani, East Champaran, West Champaran and Sheohar districts of Bihar

The foundation stone for 400/220/132 kV Sitamarhi Sub-station at Village Parmanandpur, Distt. Sitamarhi was laid today. The programme was presided over by Shri R. K. Singh, Union Minister of State (IC) for Power, New and Renewable Energy as chief guest on this occasion and Shri Nitish Kumar, Chief Minister of Bihar laid the foundation stone of the substation.

Shri RK Singh said that “The Sub-station will be completed in two years and will supply power to Sitamarhi, Darbhanga, Madhubani, East Champaran, West Champaran and Sheohar districts of Bihar. This ₹620 Crore project of Government of India will enable quality power. In 4.5 years, the grid has been interconnected to form one national grid, fulfilling the cherished dream of One Nation, One Grid.”

Addressing on the occasion, Chief Minister of Bihar said “I appreciate the Central government for its efforts and schemes in supporting the power scenario. This is an important Sub-station for improving power position of Bihar and will be an important link to National Grid.”

This POWERGRID Sitamarhi Sub-station is being constructed by POWERGRID Mithilanchal Transmission Limited (100% subsidiary company of Power Grid Corporation of India Ltd.) as part of the Eastern Region Strengthening Scheme-XXI (ERSS-XXI) project under Tariff Based Competitive Bidding (TBCB) route. This Sitamarhi Sub-station shall be constructed along with associated 400 kV transmission line at an estimated cost of ₹620 Crore in an area of about 36 acres land at Village Parmanandpur, Distt- Sitamarhi in North Bihar.

This Sub-station along with associated transmission lines shall facilitate in meeting the long-term power drawl requirement of West Champaran, East Champaran and Sitamarhi districts of Bihar and shall further strengthen interconnection of the state with the National Grid. Besides this, it shall also facilitate in additional power transfer between Bihar (India) and Nepal and would be an additional 400 kV Inter State Transmission System (ISTS) source point in North Bihar. It will also help in resolving low voltage issues in Sitamarhi and Motihari areas.

The occasion was graced by senior officials from the Govt of Bihar and the Govt of India including the people's representatives from the area.

RCS/MS

Read more: Foundation stone for 400/220/132 kV POWERGRID...

Shri RK Singh, Union Minister of State (IC) for Power and New & Renewable Energy announced the completion of the project to replace 50,000 conventional electricity meters with smart meters in the New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) area here today. Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL), a Super Energy Service Company (ESCO) under Ministry of Power has implemented this project. With this, NDMC has become the first distribution company (DISCOM) in India to implement 100 per cent smart metering solution. The adoption of smart meters will enhance consumer convenience and rationalise electricity consumption.

Speaking on the occasion, Shri RK Singh said, “India is making rapid strides in providing universal access to affordable power. The Government of India is accelerating the adoption of smart meters to ensure efficient management of electricity by checking data-entry errors, billing inefficiencies, and cutting the costs of manual meter reading through web-based monitoring system. Smart Meters will revolutionise the power sector through their vast cascade of benefits including reduced AT&C losses, better health of DISCOMs, incentivisation of energy conservation and ease of bill payments. Further, this move will generate skilled employment for the youth. I congratulate EESL on implementing the programme successfully.”

The occasion was graced by Shri Hardeep Singh Puri, Union Minister of State (I/C) for Housing and Urban Affairs, Shri Anil Baijal, Lieutenant Governor of Delhi, Shri Ajay Kumar Bhalla, Secretary, Ministry of Power, Govt. of India

Shri and Shri Naresh Kumar, Chairman, NDMC

 

EESL and NDMC also signed an MoU to install public e-charging stations. The initiative is undertaken to collaborate on promoting Electric Vehicles (including two wheelers) in the NDMC area.

The event also included the launch of smart meter feature on NDMC 311 mobile application enabling the consumers to access various services at the tap of a finger. The smart meter tab has been added to NDMC app’s home screen. Through this convenient and easy-to-use app, consumers can now get complete clarity on their energy habits and consumption through detailed and personalised insights. Rounded Rectangle: FEATURES OF NDMC’s SMART METER MOBILE APPLICATION - 311• My Profile: Shows the user’s profile• Today’s Details: Provides latest consumption and instantaneous reading• Consumption Pattern: User’s consumption pattern for the last 7, 15 and 30 days. This helps in comparing one’s historical consumption with their current one• Complaints: Users can register complaints for quick resolution• Manage Accounts: If you have more than one meter at your premises,you can check the details by putting the consumer and meter number as mentioned in ‘step 6’• Load pattern: Shows the load pattern of the household• FAQ: Provides answer to all the basic and frequently asked questions • Energy Saving Tips: A quick guide on saving energy in our day-to-day life• Contact Us: To contact the relevant department, in case of any issue

 

 

 

Within a short duration, 50,000 smart meters have been installed and integrated with the NDMC IT legacy system. The adoption of Smart Meters will lead to total annual savings of Rs. 12.47 crores to NDMC which include revenue due to improvement in billing efficiency. The AT&C losses are estimated to be 12.63 percent (Source: DERC Tariff Order FY2018-19).

 

Smart meters are part of the overall Advanced Metering Infrastructure solution (AMI) that measures and records consumers’ electricity usage at different times of the day and sends this information to the energy supplier through over-the-air communication technology. This gives consumers better access to information and enables them to make more informed decisions on the use of electricity in their homes, leading to reduced power wastage, and providing long-term carbon and financial savings.

NDMC will benefit from enhanced consumer satisfaction level resulting from better complaint management, faster restoration of outages, awareness of optimised consumption pattern, and improvement in system stability, reliability and transparency.

Commenting on the feat, Shri Naresh Kumar, Chairman, NDMC said, “NDMC has adopted the Smart Meters Programme as a part of aligning with the Government’s plan to upgrade our national energy system. We aim to play a vital role in India’s journey towards becoming a lower-carbon economy and an energy-secure nation. We are glad to lead the way in India’s smart meter revolution.”

Speaking at the occasion, Shri Rajeev Sharma, Chairman, EESL said, “We are pleased to support NDMC in their pursuit of energy sustainability and adoption of future-ready technologies like Smart Meters. Thrust on such efficient systems is critical for consumption and growth in a sustainable manner enabling the consumers to make informed decisions about their energy behaviour.”

About the project:

EESL has funded and built the Smart Metering (AMI) Solution in the project area. It will also operate and manage the system enabling NDMC to benefit from smart meters with zero upfront financial investment. NDMC’s repayment to EESL will be through the monetisation of energy savings, resulting from enhanced billing accuracy, avoided meter reading costs and other efficiencies. This includes the immediate elimination of the cost of manual meter readings. These savings further enable NDMC to invest in value-added services for its consumers. 
 

NMDC’s large-scale adoption of smart meters is a significant measure towards future-ready technologies. Smart meters pave the way for the smart grid as they enable two-way real-time communication between DISCOMs and consumers through GPRS technology.          

Implementing smart meters is one of the operational performance parameters under the Government of India’s Ujwal DISCOM Assurance Yojana (UDAY). The scheme would help in reducing AT&C losses. It will also help in monitoring round-the-clock power supply eventually leading to greater efficiency and a pathway to meeting the government’s vision of 24X7 Power for All. Under its Smart Meters National Programme, EESL aims to replace 25 crore conventional meters with smart meters in India.

 

*****

RCJ/MS

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