- All villages in India have now been been electrified. The milestone was achieved 12 days ahead of the 1,000-day deadline set by Mr. Modi on August 15, 2015.
- On Saturday evening, Leisang in Manipur’s Senapati district became the last village to be connected to the national grid. As per official data, there were 18,452 villages without electricity when the NDA government took office in May 2014.
- The work of bringing power to India’s 597,464 census villages had been undertaken under the government’s Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti Yojana (DDUGJY). According to government data, 1,236 villages are uninhabited and 35 have been notified as grazing reserves.
- The real challenge now is to feed power to each household in those villages, a task being undertaken through the Saubhagya scheme.
India & Pak to be part of multilateral military drill together :-
Indian and Pakistani combat troops, who are locked in a volatile confrontation with daily firing duels along the Line of Control in J&K, will for the first time exercise together as part of a multi-nation counter-terror war game under the aegis of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) in Russia in August.
Peace Mission 2018 :-
- The exercise ‘Peace Mission-2018’, which will also see the participation of China and other SCO countries, is slated to be held in the Chelyabinsk region of Russia from August 22 to 29.
- The main aim of the exercise, being conducted under the framework of the SCO’s Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure (RATS), which is headquartered in Tashkent (Uzbekistan), will be on bolstering counter-terror cooperation among the member countries.
- India’s participation in the exercise was confirmed by defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman during a meeting of Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) defence ministers in Beijing last week.
About Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) :-
- The Shanghai Cooperation Organisation was constituted in 2001 by China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia and Tajikistan.
- Now, the grouping has eight full members, including India, Pakistan and Uzbekistan. India joined the SCO in June 2017.
- Another four nations have been accorded ‘observer’ status, while six others are ‘dialogue’ partners.
Environment Ministry declares all protected areas plastic free zones
- The Environment Ministry has banned plastics in all protected areas around the country and declared them plastic free zones.
- It has directed states and Union territories to organise awareness campaigns to sensitise people about the issue.
- The decision has been taken ahead of the World Environment Day that is observed on June 5.
Environment Ministry, UNCCD conclude capacity building workshop
- The four-day Asia Pacific Regional Workshop of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD), jointly hosted by the Union Ministry of Environment and UNCCD Secretariat concluded on April 27, 2018.
- The four-day Workshop trained the participants in the use of an innovative land degradation monitoring tool by Conservation International, for the reporting process of UNCCD.
- Participants included delegates from about 40 Asia Pacific countries, as well as representatives from 12 Indian states affected by land degradation, scientists and researchers and line-Ministries.