Contents:

  1. IEA Launches First In-depth Review of India’s Energy Policies
  2. ‘Purvodaya’ : Accelerated development of Eastern India through an Integrated Steel Hub
  3. State Energy Efficiency Index 2019
  4. Revamp of SEZ policy to meet challenges faced by exporters
  5. PM Dedicates Four Refurbished Heritage Buildings in Kolkata To the Nation
  6. Ordinance promulgated for amendment of MMDR Act and CMSP Act
  7. 150th anniversary celebration of Kolkata Port Trust in Kolkata
  8. Indian Cyber Crime Coordination Centre (I4C)

IEA LAUNCHES FIRST IN-DEPTH REVIEW OF INDIA’S ENERGY POLICIES

Why in news?

In partnership with NITI Aayog, International Energy Agency (IEA) on 10th January, released the first in-depth review of India’s energy policies.

Details

  • The report highlights the achievements of India’s energy policies and provides recommendations to support the government’s goals of promoting well-functioning energy markets and boosting deployment of renewables.
  • IEA regularly conducts in-depth reviews of energy policies for its member and association countries.
  • This is the first review carried out for India, which has been an IEA-association country since March 2017.
  • As India builds on the remarkable growth and development of its energy sector, this in-depth review will help the Government in meeting its energy objectives by setting out a range of recommendations in each energy policy area.

What was within the report?

  • The report highlights the strong growth of renewables in India, which now accounts for almost 23% of the country’s total installed capacity.
  • The review also found that energy efficiency improvements in India avoided 15% of additional energy demand, oil and gas imports, and air pollution as well as 300 million tonnes of CO2 emissions between 2000 and 2018.
  • India is becoming increasingly influential in global energy trends.
  • The country’s demand for energy is set to double by 2040, and its electricity demand may triple, according to the IEA report.
  • The review also strongly encourages India to institutionalise energy policy coordination across government with a national energy policy framework.
  • The report will help India to design implementation strategies to achieve secure and sustainable energy access for its citizens.

‘PURVODAYA’: ACCELERATED DEVELOPMENT OF EASTERN INDIA THROUGH AN INTEGRATED STEEL HUB

Why in news?

Ministry of steel in partnership with CII and JPC launched Purvodaya-Accelerated Development of Eastern Region through an Integrated Steel hub, for focused development of the Eastern States.

Details

  • A world-class steel hub would be created that will contribute to the socio-economic development of the Eastern region of the country.
  • The steel hub once completed will create employment opportunities in the region.
  • This accompanied by the development of manufacturing industries such as logistics hubs, transport facilities, utility industries, etc., around the region is estimated to create more than 25 lakh jobs once completed.
  • Eastern India states are extremely rich in resources as they collectively hold approx. 80 percent of the Iron ore reverses of the country and also has a presence of major ports such as Paradip, Kolkata, etc.

STATE ENERGY EFFICIENCY INDEX 2019

Why in news?

Minister for Power and New & Renewable Energy and Minister of State for Skill Development & Entrepreneurship released the ‘State Energy Efficiency Index 2019’ on 10th January 2020.

Details

  • ‘State Energy Efficiency Index 2019’, which tracks the progress of Energy Efficiency (EE) initiatives in 36 states and union territories based on 97 significant indicators.
  • The index was released on  the occasion of RPM ( Review, Planning and Monitoring) meeting, which is being held on 09-10 Jan 2020.
  • The index is developed by Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE) in association with Alliance for an Energy Efficient Economy (AEEE).
  • It will help states contribute towards national goals on energy security and climate action by:
    • Helping drive EE policies and program implementation at the state and local level
    • Tracking progress in managing the states’ and India’s energy footprint
    • Institutionalising the data capture and monitoring of EE activities by states.
  • The required data was collected from the concerned state departments such as DISCOMs, Urban Development departments and other departments with the help of State Designated Agencies (SDAs).
  • A three-point agenda is suggested for consideration by state agencies:
    • Proactive role by states in policy formulation and implementation.
    • Strengthening the mechanism for data capture, management and public availability of data.
    • Enhancing the credibility of EE schemes.
  • State EE Index 2019 shows that majority of the initiatives taken by states are related to Policies and Regulations.

REVAMP OF SEZ POLICY TO MEET CHALLENGES FACED BY EXPORTERS

Why in news?

  • Commerce and Industry & Railways Minister chaired a meeting 9th January 2020, in New Delhi to review the remaining recommendations of the Baba Kalyani report on Special Economic Zone (SEZ) policy of India.

Details

  • Commerce and Industry Minister examined the revamp of the SEZ policy with a view to meeting the global challenges being faced by Indian exporters.
  • Discussions were also held to find a way out for implementation of the remaining recommendations in order to facilitate the ease of doing business in the present global market scenario.

Background

Baba Kalyani report

  • The Baba Kalyani led committee was constituted by the Ministry of Commerce and Industry to study the existing SEZ policy of India and had submitted its recommendations in November 2018.
  • The objectives of the committee
    • To evaluate the SEZ policy and make it WTO compatible
    • Suggest measures for maximizing utilization of vacant land in SEZs
    • Suggest changes in the SEZ policy based on international experience and merge the SEZ policy with other Government schemes like coastal economic zones, Delhi-Mumbai industrial corridor, national industrial manufacturing zones and food and textile parks.

SEZ

  • A special economic zone (SEZ) is an area in which the business and trade laws are different from the rest of the country.
  • SEZs are located within a country’s national borders, and their aims include increased trade balance, employment, increased investment, job creation and effective administration.
  • To encourage businesses to set up in the zone, financial policies are introduced.
  • These policies typically encompass investing, taxation, trading, quotas, customs and labour regulations.
  • Additionally, companies may be offered tax holidays, where upon establishing themselves in a zone, they are granted a period of lower taxation.

PM DEDICATES FOUR REFURBISHED HERITAGE BUILDINGS IN KOLKATA TO THE NATION

Why in news?

  • The Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi dedicated to the nation Four Refurbished Heritage Buildings in Kolkata today.

Details

  • These are Old Currency Building, the Belvedere House, the Metcalfe House and the Victoria Memorial Hall.
  • The Prime Minister said that it begins a nationwide campaign to preserve India’s art, culture and heritage, and to Reinvent, Rebrand, Renovate and Rehouse them.
  • It is with this spirit that the Union Government has taken up the endeavour to develop India as major centre of Heritage Tourism in the World.

Details of the buildings

Old Currency Building

  • This beautiful triple-storeyed structure is built in the early nineteen century (circa 1833 CE).
  • The building was handed over to the
  • Archaeological Survey of India in the year 2005.

Belvedere House

  • Belvedere House was the former palace for the Viceroy of India and later the Govenor of Bengal.
  • The National Library of India is housed therein, since 1948.

Metcalfe House

  • It is one of the torch-bearers of colonial architecture in Kolkata
  • The building was completed in 1844 to accommodate the
  • Agri-Horticultural Society in the ground floor and the Calcutta Public Library.

Victoria Memorial Hall

  • Victoria Memorial is a large marble building in Kolkata, West Bengal, India, which was built between 1906 and 1921.
  • It is dedicated to the memory of Queen Victoria

ORDINANCE PROMULGATED FOR AMENDMENT OF MMDR ACT AND CMSP ACT

Why in news?

  • The ordinance for amendment in the MMDR Act 1957 and the CMSP Act 2015 has been promulgated.
  • The Union Cabinet had earlier approved the amendments intending to open up new areas of growth in the coal & mining sector.

Details

  • The amendments in the Acts would enable the following:
  • Enhancing the  ease of doing business
  • Democratization of coal mining sector by opening it up to anyone willing to invest.
  • Offering of unexplored and partially explored coal blocks for mining through prospecting license-cum-mining Lease (PL- cum-ML).
  • Promoting Foreign Direct Investment in the coal mining  sector by removing the restriction and eligibility criteria for participation.
  • Allowing of successful bidder/allottee to utilise mined coal in any of the plant of its subsidiary or holding company
  • Attracting large investment in coal mining sector as restrictions of end use has been dropped.
  • The amendments will help to increase domestic production of India.
  • It will also help India achieve its targets set.
  • The GoI plans to increase coal production to 1 billion tonnes by 2024.
  • For the financial year 2019-20, the target set is 660 million tonnes.

150TH ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION OF KOLKATA PORT TRUST IN KOLKATA

Why in news?

  • 150th anniversary celebration of Kolkata Port Trust in Kolkata happened on 10th January 2019.
  • Decorative Lighting of the Rabindra Setu was done, giving it a more heritage look. This is formed as a new interactive show which is expected to help attract tourists.

About Rabindra Setu

  • Rabindra Setu, formerly Howrah Bridge, was commissioned in 1943.
  • Rabindra Setu is a bridge with a suspended span over the Hooghly River in West Bengal, India.
  • On 14 June 1965 it was renamed Rabindra Setu after the great Bengali poet Rabindranath Tagore, who was the first Indian and Asian Nobel laureate.
  • It is an engineering marvel as it does not have nuts and bolts, but was formed by riveting the whole structure.
  • It consumed 26,500 tonnes of steel, out of which 23,000 tonnes of high-tensile alloy steel.

INDIAN CYBER CRIME COORDINATION CENTRE (I4C)

Why in news?

Union Minister for Home Affairs, Shri Amit Shah, inaugurated the Indian Cyber Crime Coordination Centre (I4C) and also dedicated National Cyber Crime Reporting Portal to the Nation today.

This state-of-the-art Centre is located in New Delhi.

Details

  • I4C was setup to deal with all types of cybercrimes in a comprehensive and coordinated manner.
  • It has seven components viz.,
    1. National Cyber Crime Threat Analytics Unit
    2. National Cyber Crime Reporting Portal
    3. National Cyber Crime Training Centre
    4. Cyber Crime Ecosystem Management Unit
    5. National Cyber Crime Research and Innovation Centre
    6. National Cyber Crime Forensic Laboratory Ecosystem
    7. Platform for Joint Cyber Crime Investigation Team.
  • National Cyber Crime Reporting Portal (www.cybercrime.gov.in) is a citizen-centric initiative that will enable citizens to report cybercrimes online through the portal.
  • All the cybercrime related complaints will be accessed by the concerned law enforcement agencies in the States and Union Territories for taking action as per law.
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