August Spotlight 2020

ūüóďÔłŹ¬† August¬†2020


1. NITI Aayog’s Atal Innovation Mission (AIM) has launched the first of its kind AIM iCREST program in association with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Wadhwani Foundation.

  • Purpose: To enhance the incubator capabilities in India for developing a robust startup¬†ecosystem and to provide global expertise to AIM’s incubator network.
  • For the first time in the government, the Incubator capacity development program is being extended to all Atal incubators.

2. Maharashtra has approved the Maharashtra Agribusiness Network (MagNet) project to boost fruit and vegetable production in the state.

  • The project is worth Rs 1,000 crore, of which 70% is funded by the¬†Asian Development Bank.
  • The project aims to help small and marginal farmers across all districts in the state for the next six years.

3. Madhya Pradesh¬†has launched¬†‚ÄúEkMaskAnekZindagi‚Ä̬†campaign for raising awareness about wearing masks from August 1-15.


4. India and the UK have partnered to boost their collaboration in the field of science and research to tackle anti-microbial resistance.

  • Five new projects worth 8 million pounds will be funded in a¬†50:50 ratio by India and UK.
  • UK has already partnered with India’s Serum Institute to manufacture the vaccine for¬†COVID-19.
  • UK is India’s second-biggest research partner with joint research expected to be worth¬†400 million pounds by next year.

5. The Ministry of Education has launched the India Report on Digital Education, 2020 which has been prepared by the digital education division of the Ministry.

  • The report details the digital measures taken by the Ministry, States, and UT to¬†ensure students‚Äô access to education during the Covid-19 pandemic.

6. Minister of Housing and Urban Affairs, Hardeep Singh Puri, has launched the ‚ÄėCREDAIAwaas App‚Äô and NAREDCO‚Äôs online portal ‚Äė‚Äô to ensure the transparent transactions of the residential housing units (approved by RERA).

  • Also, the minister launched the guide book of the ‚ÄėAffordable Rental Housing Complexes‚Äô¬†(ARHCs) programme.

7. The Ministry of MSME¬†has approved a¬†program¬†to distribute a total of 200 Agarbatti manufacturing machines and 40 mixing machines to the artisans under the KVIC‚Äôs ‚ÄúGramodyog Vikas Yojana‚ÄĚ to support the indigenous manufacturing of agarbatti.

  • Initially four pilot projects will be started as part of the programme, including one in the North East.
  • KVIC will tie up with khadi institutions and agarbatti manufacturers in the country to provide them training.
  • Recently, Agarbatti has been shifted into ‚ÄúRestricted trade‚ÄĚ category in the import policy from Free trade category.
  • Import duty on ‚Äėround bamboo sticks‚Äô (raw for manufacturing of Agarbatti) has been increased to 25% from 10%.

8. Union Minister of Rural Development and Panchayati Raj, Shri Narendra Singh Tomar has launched a booklet on Best Practices in Digital India Land Records Modernization Programme (DILRMP).

  • As per the booklet, the program is performing well in achieving its targets.
  • The program (earlier known as the National Land Record Modernization Programme) was launched in 2008 to digitize the land records and develop a centralized land record management system.

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