Mumbai : The Regional Passport Office in Mumbai has made it compulsory for applicants to obtain prior online appointments before visiting Passport Seva Kendras at Andheri and Malad in Mumbai. Presently, applicants living in Aurangabad (City and Rural), Beed, Ratnagiri, Sindhudurg, Daman and Dadra Nagar Haveli, which fall under the jurisdiction of Regional Passport Office, Mumbai have the option to ‘walk-in’ with their Application Number. “This procedure will be discontinued from December 20th and all the applicants living in these areas should obtain prior online appointment before visiting the Passport Seva Kendras” says the Regional Passport Officer.
After the successful introduction of online payment system, the problem of availability of appointment has been resolved and appointment slots are available in bulk. The decision to discontinue the ‘walk-in’ system and handle all passport applications through online appointment system is expected to streamline passport issue system at the Mumbai Regional Passport Office.
New Delhi ; The Department of Higher Education, Ministry of Human Resource Development has been implementing the Special Scholarship Scheme for Jammu & Kashmir since 2011. The Scheme aims to provide tuition fees, hostel fees, cost of books and other incidental charges to students belonging to Jammu & Kashmir who, after passing Class XII or equivalent examination through the State Board of Jammu & Kashmir and from Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) affiliated schools located in Jammu & Kashmir, have secured admission in Government colleges/institutes and other select institutes outside the State of Jammu & Kashmir. Five thousand fresh scholarships are available every year, of which 4500 scholarships are for general degree courses, 250 for engineering and 250 for medical studies.
The scheme is being implemented through a web portal of All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) (http://www.aicte-india.org/JnKadmissions.html). In order to provide an all India exposure to the students of J&K, these scholarships are limited to five per institute plus seats in Centrally Funded Technical Institutions. Inter-changeability of slots amongst General Degree, Medical and Engineering streams is also permissible with the approval of the Inter Ministerial Committee (IMC). The provisions of reservation as per J&K State Government reservation norms is also provided for.
While the number of scholarships awarded in the year 2011-12 was only 38, it increased to 3340 in the year 2012-13. For the year 2013-14, scholarships to 1502 students were approved on 8th November, 2013. In the 8th meeting of Inter Ministerial Committee (IMC), held on 26.11.2013, it was decided that scholarship may be provided to the remaining 2245 eligible candidates subject to their giving an undertaking that in the next academic year they may be relocated to other institutes within the same university or other university in the region. Thus, in the current academic session 3747 students would be eligible for scholarships covering the entire budgeting allocation for year.
The IMC also decided that from the academic year 2014-15, only those students would be eligible for scholarship who apply through the above AICTE portal and are allotted colleges/seats or those who are admitted to the centrally funded institutions of their own merit. The State Government would be playing an active role in proper dissemination of the scheme and helping AICTE and the students in properly filling the web application requirements.
New Delhi : Aam Aadmi Party salutes the citizens of Delhi for turning out in large numbers for inaugurating transformative politics in India. The trends available so far indicate that the voters of Delhi have shed their apathy and indifference and have created a new record turnout. Elections are occasions for routine alteration of governments and parties. Aam Aadmi Party turned its very first election into a quest for alternative kind of politics.
With today’s polling, Aam Aadmi Party has concluded an extraordinary election campaign. Unlike the established political parties, Aam Aadmi Party began its campaign nearly six months ago. It announced most of its candidates more than two months before the date of polling. This campaign will be remembered for many firsts. This was the first experiment of large scale “crowd-sourcing” of clean money for honest politics. Aam Aadmi Party set a target for Rupees 20 crore donation, accounted for every single donation, and closed the donations once it achieved its target.This was one of the first experiments in establishing a transparent and consultative process of the selection of candidates. This was the first time a political party promised to withdraw any tainted candidate and actually lived up to its promise by withdrawing a candidate. This was the first time a political party issued constituency-level manifestos for each of the constituencies it is contesting.
The outcome of this extraordinary campaign is still awaited. A journey like this is its own reward. Aam Aadmi Party entered politics at a point when people had lost faith in politics, when politics had become a dirty word. No one believed that elections could be contested honestly. Thus Aam Aadmi Party may have contributed in its small way to restoring the spirit of volunteerism and idealism in politics. The credit for this must go to the tens of thousands of volunteers from within Delhi and thousands of volunteers outside Delhi and outside India who gave up their home, career and comfort for this larger cause of nation building. Aam Aadmi Party salutes their untiring effort.
Aam Aadmi Party takes this occasion to thank the Election Commission for conducting the election and for being proactively non-partisan in the conduct of elections. Today we received some complaints from a few constituencies about large-scale deletion of genuine voters, non-functioning EVMs, and about partisan behavior of the polling staff. These complaints were especially serious from the New Delhi constituency. We are confident that the Election Commission will look into these complaints seriously, punish the guilty, and rectify the mistakes.
New Delhi : India President, Shri Pranab Mukherjee celebrated his 78th birthday today. The Vice President, Mohd. Hamid Ansari, Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh, Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar and Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde who presented bouquets and wished him on the occasion.
The Kalaikunda airbase today witnessed three MiG-27 aircraft perform the Trishul Break Manoeuvre as a salute to the MiG-21 type 77 aircraft that was towed out and into the Hangar for the last time. The Kalaikunda based Operational Conversion Unit (OCU) bid a final farewell to its oldest workhorse.
Air Chief Marshal NAK Browne, Chief of the Air Staff who was present at the occasion of phasing out MiG 21, Type -77 in his address said, “Today’s event marks a watershed moment in IAF’s history as we reach the end of nearly five decades of remarkable operational service rendered by this iconic fighter.
The induction of first batch of six MiG 21s way back in Mar-Apr 1963 heralded the arrival of IAF in the ‘Supersonic era’. Its unprecedented combat versatility afforded the IAF great amount of operational flexibility. Over the years, this delta wing marvel slowly evolved into the combat backbone of the IAF and close to 1000 fighters (which include all variants) have served in the IAF till date. In 1980-90s the MiG-21s constituted nearly 60% of our combat fleet strength.
It is no wonder therefore that five generations of our combat pilots including myself, who have ‘cut teeth’ on this veritable fighter swear by its unmatched combat prowess. As a matter of fact around 80% of the presently serving fighter aircrew in the IAF have flown the T-77 aircraft and 90% have flown one of the MiG variants at some time or the other in their flying career.
The T-77 fleet has been flying on an average around 9000 hours per year. Today, while we operate the Su 30s and are looking forward to inducting the Rafale MMRCA, MiG-21 fighters (all variants) continue to proudly contribute to the IAF’s operational strength.
I salute your spirit of service and of countless other air warriors who brave daily challenges of operating and maintaining this fighter in the highest operational conditions in our various stations across the Air Force.
The T-77 may have flown its last sortie today, but its imprint on the ‘Operational DNA’ of the IAF will continue for a long time. Gradually the other variants of the MiG-21 would also retire from service with Bison continuing for more than a decade or so.
We are indeed proud of the five decades of professional association with MiG-21 and are grateful for its invaluable contribution to the IAF over the years. I am sure that from this day onwards the MiG-21 T-77 will proudly go down in history as one of the finest combat aircraft which has served the IAF over the years.
On behalf of all the men and women of the IAF, I salute this veritable fighter and the contributions of all those who made it possible for our young fighter pilots to touch the sky with glory. Jai Hind!”
New Delhi : Minister of State for Personnel, Public Grievances & Pensions and Prim Minister’s Office Shri V.Narayansamy in a written reply to a question informed the lo sabha that, India`s first interplanetary spacecraft, Mars Orbiter was successfully launched on November 05, 2013 at 14:38 hrs (IST), by India`s Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle PSLV-C25, from Satish Dhawan Space Centre.
The mission has been successful so far and has progressed as planned. Subsequent to the injection of Mars Orbiter Spacecraft into the elliptical orbit (perigee of 248.4 km and apogee of 23,550 km) by PSLV-C25, a series of orbit raising maneuvers were performed from Spacecraft Control Centre at ISRO’s Telemetry, Tracking and Command Network, Bangalore. The critical maneuver to place Mars Orbiter in the Mars Transfer Trajectory was successfully carried out in the early hours of December 1, 2013. The Earth orbiting phase of the Mars Orbiter has been completed and Mars Orbiter has successfully escaped the Earth’s Sphere Of Influence on December 04, 2013. The Orbiter is now on a course to encounter Mars after a journey of about 300 days. Besides these maneuvers, health checks of the Mars Orbiter as well as its payloads have been performed and all systems on-board Mars Orbiter are performing normally.
The total funds sanctioned by the Government for this mission is ` 450 Crores, which includes cost towards Mars Orbiter Spacecraft, Launch Vehicle and the Ground Segment. The actual expenditure incurred on this mission up to 31.10. 2013 is ` 244.06 Crores. The balance amount is planned to be spent during the remaining period of current financial year and next financial year.
The Mars Orbiter Mission would enable technological up-gradation for the country. It would provide excellent opportunities in planetary research for the scientific community of the country. It would generate national pride and excitement in the young minds. The 12th Five Year Plan envisages initiation of Mars Orbiter follow-on mission studies including identification of scientific instruments.
The challenges likely to be faced by ISRO in this mission in the days to come include –
Perform in-orbit maintenance of the Mars Orbiter and few mid course corrections in the trajectory during a voyage of 300 days.
Mars orbit capture / insertion and to orbit Mars in an elliptical orbit of 366 km x 80000 km.
Explore Mars surface features, morphology, mineralogy and Martian atmosphere by indigenous five scientific instruments on board the Mars Orbiter.