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Eight beaches in India awarded international Blue Flag certification: Kappad beach in Kozhikode is one of them

NEW DELHI Oct 12: Eight beaches in India have been awarded the prestigious Blue Flag certification, the environment ministry said on Sunday. Terming it a “proud moment” for the country, Union Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar said the certification is a global recognition of India’s conservation and sustainable development efforts.
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Kerala emerges most literate state: But annoyed over being placed 28th in Ease of Doing Business in India

97-year-old Karthyayani Amma from Kerala secured first rank in the Kerala’s literacy exam under” Aksharalaksham” scheme.

NEW DELHI Sept 8: With 96.2 per cent literacy, Kerala has once again emerged as the most literate state in the country, while Andhra Pradesh featured at the bottom with a rate of 66.4 per cent, showed a report based on National Statistical Office (NSO) survey.

The report on ”Household Social Consumption: Education in India as part of 75th round of National Sample Survey – from July 2017 to June 2018” provides for state-wise detail of literacy rate among the persons aged seven years and above.

According to the study, after Kerala, Delhi has the best literacy rate at 88.7 per cent, followed by Uttarkhand’s 87.6 per cent, Himachal Pradesh’s 86.6 per cent and Assam’s at 85.9 per cent.

On the other hand, Rajasthan is the second worst performer with literacy rate at 69.7 per cent, followed by Bihar at 70.9 per cent, Telangana at 72.8 per cent, Uttar Pradesh at 73 per cent and Madhya Pradesh at 73.7 per cent.

The study has pegged the overall literacy rate in the country at about 77.7 per cent. In rural areas, the literacy rate is 73.5 per cent compared to 87.7 per cent in urban areas of the country.

A sample of 64,519 rural households from 8,097 villages and 49,238 urban households from 6,188 blocks was surveyed all-over India. The report also revealed that nearly 4 per cent of rural households and 23 per cent of urban household possessed computer.

Among persons of age 15-29 years, nearly 24 per cent in rural areas and 56 per cent in urban areas were able to operate a computer.

Nearly 35 per cent of persons of age 15-29 years reported use of internet during the 30 days prior to the date of survey. The proportions were nearly 25 per cent in rural areas and 58 per cent in urban areas.

However, miffed over being placed 28th in the Ease of Doing Business (EoDB) ranking 2019 covering states and Union Territories, Kerala on Monday held that the process lacked clarity on some counts, and asked the Centre to disclose the criteria applied in deciding the ranking.

Kerala State Industrial Development Corporation’s Managing Director S. Harikishore (KSIDC) said that his organisation, as the state’s nodal agency for industrial promotion, has approached Centre seeking the details in this regard.

The EoDB ranking was published on September 5.

“The EoDB ranking, as published on the website of the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT), did not reveal either the criteria adopted for scoring and ranking or disclose the feedback from the states and UTs,” Harikishore said.

As per the Business Reform Action Plan (BRAP) of 2019, each state had to complete 187 missions.

Of these, Kerala has accomplished 157 missions, which comes to 85 per cent of the mandated missions, but the details in this regard are not available on the website that put out the ranking, he said.

“While it was stated that the ranking would be decided based on the Reform Action points and feedback scores obtained from states and UTs concerned, the details of this process are also not available on the website. The details regarding the yardsticks adopted for the scoring and ranking have not been shared among the states or revealed them on the website, which has resulted in lack of clarity regarding the process of ranking. This is why KSIDC decided to approach the DPIIT on the very day the ranking was published,” Harikishore added.

Lakshadweep, which has not carried out any reforms as cited on EoDB website, has been ranked 15th, he said, claiming several criteria announced by the DPIIT for EoDB ranking, based on BRAP in 2018-19, have been changed in the current ranking. For instance, the northeastern states and UTs have been considered together in the current ranking.

“Since 2016, as many as 52,137 MSME enterprises have been started in Kerala, which account for 40 per cent of all businesses the state has in this job-generating sector. The state has clocked an estimated investment of Rs 4,500 crore in MSME sector alone, which itself vouch for the strides made by Kerala in industrialisation,” Harikishore said. – PTI

Indian court asks Army officers to quit Facebook and Instagram

New Delhi July 15: The Delhi High Court on Tuesday declined to grant any interim relief to a senior army officer, who has challenged the Indian Army’s recent policy banning armed forces personnel from using social networking platforms like Facebook and Instagram, saying he has to either abide by the mandate of the organisation or put in his papers. Continue reading “Indian court asks Army officers to quit Facebook and Instagram”

12 went to barber shop for haircut, six returned with COVID, cloth used turn villain

BHOPAL: Six people who went to a salon for haircut and a shave were later found to be infected with the novel coronavirus at a village in Madhya Pradesh, officials said. The entire village has been sealed by the police.
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Centre Allows Shops To Open With Conditions, Malls To Remain Closed

New Delhi April 25: The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) on Friday allowed the opening of shops registered under the Shops and Establishment Act with some exceptions.
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S Jaishankar Discusses Ways To Deal COVID-19 With US, Russia, Brazil, Saudi Arabia

New Delhi April 24: External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Thursday held telephonic conversation with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and his Brazilian counterpart Ernesto Araujo, broadly focusing on ways to effectively deal with the coronavirus pandemic that has killed over 180,000 people globally.
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“Worried About Developing Countries”: IMF Chief On COVID-19 Impact

Sofia April 21: Developing countries may be the hardest hit economically by the coronavirus, International Monetary Fund managing director Kristalina Georgieva said on Monday, adding the IMF stands ready to help.
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India Carrying Out Strikes On Terror Launch Pads Along LoC: Rajnath Singh

New Delhi April 20: Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Sunday said the Indian Army is carrying out “targeted strikes” on terror launch pads along the Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir.
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Sitaram Yechury Suggests 9 Measures To Centre To Contain COVID-19

New Delhi April 17: CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury on Thursday suggested nine measures, including rapidly increasing testing and procuring PPEs, to the government to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
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Spitting In Public Now An Offence Under Disaster Management Act: Home Ministry

New Delhi: Spitting in public is an offense now with the Union Home Ministry making the act a punishable offence under the strict Disaster Management Act in its revised guidelines for lockdown issued on Wednesday to contain COVID-19.
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