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‘Super Tuesday’

In a unique move, the Karnataka government has decided to observe every Tuesday as ‘Super Tuesday’ to guarantee availability of medical treatment to mentally challenged persons in taluk hospitals, community health centres and primary health centres (PHCs) across the State.

In a first-of-its-kind scheme in the country, the State launched two major programmes — Manochaitanya and Manasadhara — to provide free treatment, counselling and medicines to people suffering from mental disabilities and their rehabilitation. The World Mental Health Day is observed on 10th of October every year.

According to the programme all psychiatrists of district hospitals must visit taluk hospitals and community and primary health centres on that day and offer treatment and drugs to people suffering from various mental disabilities.

Doctors of PHCs will provide guidance to people with mental disabilities. Resident doctors, postgraduate students and teaching and non-teaching staff of medical colleges would also participate in the programme. Doctors of respective hospitals or health centres would be held responsible if there is dereliction of duty or non-availability of medicines.

The programme is aimed at promoting social wellbeing of people suffering from mental disabilities, and for rehabilitation to increase their economic productivity and promote happiness among families.

Sources: The Hindu.


cyclones and their naming

Cyclones were usually not named. The tradition started with hurricanes in the Atlantic Ocean, where tropical storms that reach sustained wind speeds of 39 miles per hour were given names. ( hurricanes, typhoons, cyclones are all the same, just different names for tropical storms in different parts of the world; Hurricane in the Atlantic, Typhoon in the Pacific and Cyclone in the Indian Ocean). If the storm’s wind speed reaches or crosses 74 mph, it is then classified into a hurricane/cyclone/typhoon. Tropical storms are given names and they retain the name if they develop into a cyclone/hurricane/typhoon.

Naming of cyclones in North Indian Ocean by India and other SAARC countries and Oman and Thailand began 10 years ago for easy reference, documentation and research. Naming of storms is done for effective forecasting and getting it circulated through mass media. It is also useful for academic research

The latest storm Hudhud, which is expected to hit the odisha coast, is named by Oman after Arabic word, Hoopoe, a blue-crested bird found in Afro Eurasia known for its beautiful crest of feathers. The next is named by Pakistan as Nilofer. Phailin was named by Thailand after the word, sapphire.

Naming of cyclones is done by turns in the following sequence after Nilofer by Pakistan: Priya (Sri Lanka), Komen (Thailand), Chapala (Bangladesh), Megh (India), Roanu (Maldives), Kyant (Myanmer), Nada (Oman) and Asiri (Sri Lanka). International committee of World Meteorological Organisation and UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and Pacific play a key role in cyclone naming.

Read more at:

Sources: The Hindu, indiatoday.


Nobel Literature Prize

France’s Patrick Modiano has won the Nobel Literature Prize for his enigmatic novels rooted in the trauma of the Nazi occupation and his own loveless childhood.

The Swedish Academy said it wanted to celebrate Mr. Modiano’s “art of memory” in capturing the lives of ordinary French people living under the Nazis during World War II.

His first novel La place de l’etoile ( The Star’s Place ), was a direct reference to that mark of shame inflicted on the Jews.

It was the first of many recreations of wartime Paris stuffed with meticulous detail — street names, cafes, metro stations and real-life crime cases of the day — earning him the moniker of literary archaeologist.

Sources: The Hindu.

Japan Plus

The Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion (DIPP) has set up a special management team to facilitate and fast track investment proposals from Japan. The team, known as “Japan Plus”, will comprise representatives from Government of India and METI (Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry), Government of Japan.

It is an outcome of the recently concluded visit of the Prime Minister of India to Japan. The mandate of the “Japan Plus” team runs through the entire spectrum of investment promotion – research, outreach, promotion, facilitation and aftercare. The team will support the Government of India in initiating, attracting, facilitating, fast tracking and handholding Japanese investments across sectors. The team will also be responsible for providing updated information on investment opportunities across sectors, in specific projects and in industrial corridors in particular. In addition, the “Japan Plus” team will identify prospective Japanese companies, including, Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and facilitate their investments in India.

The “Japan Plus” team will also provide assistance to DIPP in undertaking regular benchmarking studies, identifying bottlenecks and areas of concern in sectors of interest to Japanese companies, and analyzing their impact on industrial development production in India.

Japan is the 4th largest FDI contributor to India, with major interests in pharmaceuticals, automobiles and services sectors and accounts for 7.46% of total FDI equity inflows into India. Over the last decade, the number of Japanese establishments in India have increased by 11 times, reflecting the positive sentiments of Japanese investors for Indian market.

Sources: PIB.


Draft Road Transport and Safety Bill 2014

It is a Bill which aims to provide a framework for safer, faster, cost effective and inclusive movement of passengers and freight in the country thus enabling the mission of ‘Make in India’.

Highlights of the Bill:

2 lakhs lives to be saved in first 5 years due to reduction in road traffic accident deaths
4% GDP improvement on account of increased efficiency and safety of road transport sector

10 lac Jobs to be created with increase in investment in the sector

The bill proposes to include:

Motor Vehicle Regulation & Road Safety Authority of India

  • Independent agency for vehicle regulation and road safety
  • Dedicated institutional setup to save over 200,000 lives in first 5 years
  • Legally empowered & fully functional agency, accountable to Parliament
  • Innovative financing mechanism for funding safety programs

Unified Driver Licensing System

  • Simplified application and issuance procedures for driver licensing system
  • Unified biometric system to avoid duplication
  • Technology adoption for driver testing facilities    
  • Transparent, single window driver licencing system. Automated driving test for increased capacity with private sector participation.

Unified Vehicle Registration System

  • Unified registration in a dynamic information system
  • Integration of all stakeholders. Easy (online) transfer of vehicles across states. Increased private sector participation in fitness testing to create more jobs
  • Manufacturer, owner, transport authority, insurer, enforcement agency all in one eco-system
  • Private sector participation in establishing fitness certification centres

Road Safety & Traffic Management

  • Provision for enforcement of modern safety technologies
  • Creation of a motor accident fund for immediate relief to accident victim
  • Special emphasis on safety of school children and security of women
  • Electronic enforcement in urban clusters. Special emphasis for safety of vulnerable road users

National Road Transport & Multimodal Coordination Authority

  • Single national authority for improving quality of road transportation
  • Focus on developing integrated transport systems & multi-modal hubs
  • Feeder system and last mile connectivity for people friendly mobility
  • Institutional setup to facilitate ‘Make in India’ vision. Seamless movement of goods and passengers across various modes

Goods Transport & National Freight Policy

  • Identification and development of freight networks
  • Address bottlenecks concerning trucking industry
  • Simplified permits and single portal clearances

The DRTSB also includes the setting up of a Highway Traffic Regulation and Protection Force (HTRPF).

For further reference:


p style=”text-align: right”>Sources:, PIB.