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Pravasi Bhartiya Kendra Renamed As Sushma Swaraj Bhawan

Foreign Service Institute was also renamed as Sushma Swaraj Institute of Foreign Service.

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NEW DELHI: The external affairs ministry announced on Thursday that two key institutions linked to India’s foreign policy would be renamed after late external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj. The External Affairs Ministry stated that the decision to rename the two institutions was taken to honour Swaraj’s legacy and her decades of public service.

The decision to rename the Pravasi Bhartiya Kendra and Foreign Service Institute, both located in New Delhi, was made on the eve of Swaraj’s birth anniversary on February 14. Swaraj, India’s first full-time woman foreign minister, died of cardiac arrest on 6 August 2019. She was 67.

Sushma Swaraj was India’s first full-time woman foreign minister and the second woman ever to hold the post after Indira Gandhi.


She was a seven-time Parliamentarian and three-time member of a legislative assembly. She had served as the fifth Chief Minister of Delhi in 1998 for a short term.

In 1977, she had become the youngest cabinet minister of Haryana at the age of 25 years.

At the age of 25 in 1977, she became the youngest cabinet minister of the Indian state of Haryana.

She had served as the External Affairs Minister under PM Narendra Modi’s first government from 2014-2019. She did not contest in the 2019 Lok Sabha Elections and refrained from being a part of Modi 2.0 citing health reasons.


As the External Affairs Minister, she was known to have helped many Indians in distress abroad. She was known as one of the most accessible ministers who was often known to respond to distress messages over twitter.

She passed away on August 6, 2019, due to cardiac arrest at the age of 67 years. She was awarded the Padma Vibhushan, India’s second-highest civilian award, posthumously in the field of public affairs in 2020.

Pravasi Bhartiya Kendra:
The Pravasi Bhartiya Kendra was established in 2011 for networking between India and the Indian community aboard. The Kendra is used to organise seminars, activities, workshops and events pertaining to the Indian diaspora.

Foreign Service Institute:

The Foreign Service Institute was set up in 1986 by the Union External Affairs Ministry. The institute is one of the leading training organisations for diplomats. It handles professional training of Indian Foreign Service (IFS) officers. It also conducts training programmes for officers and Indian representatives posted in Indian missions abroad.


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COVID19

COVID-19 Unblock 2.0: Metro Rail, Schools, Colleges, Cinemas, Gyms To Remain Shut

International air travel of passengers has been permitted in a limited manner under the Vande Bharat mission. 

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NEW DELHI: The Centre has issued new guidelines for Unlock -2 to open up more activities in areas outside the Containment Zones. The new guidelines will come into effect from tomorrow and the process of phased re-opening of activities has been extended further. As per the new guidelines, the lockdown will continue to be implemented strictly in the Containment Zones till July 31.

The Home Ministry has said that the new guidelines are based on feedback received from States and UTs, and extensive consultations held with related Central Ministries and Departments.

Under the new guidelines of Unlock -2, Metro Rail service, operation of Cinema halls, gymnasiums, swimming pools, entertainment parks, theatres, bars, auditoriums, assembly halls and similar places will not be allowed.


Salient features of the new guidelines for Unlock 2

  • Domestic flights and passenger trains have already been allowed in a limited manner. Their operations will be further expanded in a calibrated manner.
  • Night curfew timings are being further relaxed and curfew shall be in force from 10.00 pm to 5.00 am. Further, relaxations in night curfew have been given for the seamless operation of industrial units in multiple shifts, movement of persons and goods on National and State Highways, loading and unloading of cargo and movement of persons to their destinations after disembarking from buses, trains and aeroplanes.
  • Shops, depending upon their area, can have more than 5 persons at a time. However, they have to maintain adequate physical distance.
  • Training institutions of the Central and State Governments will be allowed to function with effect from July 15, 2020.  SOP in this regard will be issued by the Department of Personnel and Training, Government of India.
  • After extensive consultation with States and UTs, it has been decided that schools, colleges and coaching institutions will remain closed till July 31, 2020.
  • International air travel of passengers has been permitted in a limited manner under the Vande Bharat mission.  Further opening-up will take place in a calibrated manner.
  • All activities, except the following, shall be permitted outside containment zones:
  1. Metro Rail.
  2. Cinema halls, gymnasiums, swimming pools, entertainment parks, theatres, bars, auditoriums, assembly halls and similar places.
  3. Social/ political/ sports/ entertainment/ academic/ cultural/ religious functions and other large congregations.

Dates for the opening of these will be decided separately, based on the assessment of the situation.

  • Lockdown shall continue to be implemented strictly in the Containment Zones till July 31, 2020. Containment Zones are required to be carefully demarcated by the State/ UT Governments with a view to containing the spread of COVID-19, after taking into consideration the guidelines issued by the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare (MOHFW).  Within the containment zones, strict perimeter control shall be maintained and only essential activities allowed.
  • These Containment Zones will be notified on the websites of the respective District Collectors and by the States/UTs and information will also be shared with MOHFW.
  • Activities in the Containment Zones shall be monitored strictly by the State/UT authorities, and the guidelines relating to containment measure in these zones shall be strictly implemented.
  • MOHFW will monitor the proper delineation of Containment Zones and the implementation of the containment measures.

States to decide on activities outside Containment Zones


  • States and UTs, based on their assessment of the situation, may prohibit certain activities outside the Containment zones, or impose such restrictions as deemed necessary.
  • However, there shall be no restriction on inter-State and intra-State movement of persons and goods.  No separate permission/ approval/ e-permit will be required for such movements.

Night curfew

  • Night Curfew shall continue to remain in force, between 10.00 pm and 5 am, except for essential activities and other relaxation given in Unlock 2.

National Directives for COVID-19 management

  • National Directives for COVID-19 management shall continue to be followed throughout the country, with a view to ensuring social distancing.  Shops will need to maintain adequate physical distancing among customers. MHA will monitor the effective implementation of National Directives.

Protection for vulnerable persons

  • Vulnerable persons, i.e., persons above 65 years of age, persons with co-morbidities, pregnant women, and children below the age of 10 years, are advised to stay at home, except for meeting essential requirements and for health purposes.

Use of Aarogya Setu

  • The use of Aarogya Setu mobile application will continue to be encouraged.
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CHANGE ON THE GROUND

Uttar Pradesh Will Generate 1.25 Cr Jobs: PM Modi

PM Modi praised the UP govt for their unprecedented work in ensuring that the poor don’t go hungry.

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NEW DELHI/LUCKNOW: The Yogi Adityanath-led Uttar Pradesh will generate 1.25 cr employment opportunities, primarily in rural areas and across small-scale industries, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said. Since the lockdown was announced on 25 March, hundreds of thousands of migrant workers from UP have returned to the state after losing their livelihood.

At the virtual launch of the ‘Atma Nirbhar Uttar Pradesh Rojgar Abhiyaan’, along with Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, Modi said the scheme was a “qualitative and quantitative expansion” of Garib Kalyan Rojgar Abhiyaan (GKRA), a new central job scheme. He said investors from India and abroad were looking to set up businesses in Uttar Pradesh.

“Uttar Pradesh has increased the scope of Garib Kalyan Rojgar Abhiyaan. While the scheme started by the Centre had 25 programmes under it, the Uttar Pradesh government has not only added more schemes, but has made a quantitative and qualitative improvement [on the GKRA]. Uttar Pradesh government is expected to employ 1.25 crore people under these schemes, of which 60 lakh will get employment in rural areas, and 40 lakh under micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs),” Modi said.


The ‘Abhiyan is intensely focused towards providing employment, promote local entrepreneurship and create partnership with industrial associations and other organisations to provide employment opportunities’.
Around 50 per cent number of the jobs will be provided under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS).

The Uttar Pradesh CM had asked the state authorities to map the skill of the workers returning from different states so that they can be provided employment as per their expertise.

The state has around 1.80 crore MGNREGS job cardholders, out of which, 85 lakh have been active.
Commenting on the state government’s initiative, Chief Secretary RK Tiwari said, “We are roping in all major departments to provide work in addition to jobs being provided under the MGNREGS. The micro small and medium enterprises (MSME) department, public works department, horticulture department and the agencies constructing the expressways will also contribute in a big way in the creation of more jobs.”


The Centre had announced the Atma Nirbhar Bharat Package to stimulate various sectors. In order to generate employment with a thrust towards creating infrastructure in backward regions of the country, Garib Kalyan Rojgar Abhiyan was launched on June 20, 2020.

The PM lauded the courage and wisdom shown by Uttar Pradesh when Corona is in such a major crisis in the world. He said that the way the state succeeded and the way it handled the situation is unprecedented and is praiseworthy.

PM Modi praised the contribution of doctors, paramedics, sanitation staff, police, ASHAs, Anganwadi workers, banks and post offices, transport services and workers in UP.

PM Modi lauded the Government of UP making efforts to bring back the migrant labour belonging to the state, by facilitating hundreds of Shramik Express Trains.

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News Report

130 People Dead In UP And Bihar Due To Lightning Strikes

Most of the casualties are farmers who were doing agriculture-related works in fields.

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LUCKNOW/PATNA: In Bihar, the death toll in lightning and rain-related incidents in 25 districts of the state during the last 24 hours has reached 106 while 56  others have been injured. Most of the casualties are farmers who were doing agriculture-related works in fields.

Thirteen people died in Gopalganj, eight each lost their lives in Madhubani and Nawada, six each in Siwan and Bhagalpur, five each in East Champaran, Darbhanga and Banka, three each in Khagaria and Aurangabad, two each in West Champaran, Kishanganj, Jehanabad, Jamui, Purnia, Supaul, Buxar and Kaimur and one each in Samastipur, Sheohar, Saran, Sitamarhi and Madhepura,” state Principal Secretary (Disaster Management) Pratyaya Amrit said.

In Gopalganj district, the deceased were residents of Barauli, Manjha, Vijaipur, Uchkagaon and Kateya areas. The lightning struck when they were working in their farms. Gopalganj Sadar Hospital, where the injured were brought for treatment, had a flooded emergency ward. District Magistrate Arshad Aziz said seven people were admitted to the hospital, and added that compensation will be provided to the kin of the deceased.


In Madhubani, eight of a family were killed in villages under Phulparas and Benipatti police station limits. In East Champaran district, among other deaths was a 14-year-old girl killed in a lightning strike in Surendra village under Raxaul police station limits.

The Met department has forecast heavy rain and lightning in the next three days in different parts of the state. The people have been advised to remain indoors during this period. The state government has appealed to people to take all necessary precautions during turbulent weather.

Chief Minister Nitish Kumar has expressed grief over the loss of lives and announced an ex-gratia of four lakh rupees to the next of kin of the deceased. He has ordered free treatment to injured people.


Similarly, in the neighbouring Uttar Pradesh, at least 24 persons were killed and 12 others injured due to lightning yesterday. AIR Correspondent reports that as per the report of the Relief Commissioner of the state, 9 casualties were reported from Deoria district where 6 persons were also injured in incidents of lightning.

Six persons lost their lives in Prayagraj while there are reports of 3 deaths in Ambedkarnagar, 2 in Barabanki and one each death in Kushinagar, Fatehpur, Balrampur and Unnao districts. Those who lost their lives were either working in their farms or had taken shelter under trees during the lightning strike.

Nine of them died in Deoria district. “Amid rain and thunderstorms, 24 people have died due to lightning strikes in various districts of the state today – one in Kushinagar, one in Fatehpur, one in Unnao, nine in Deoria, two in Barabanki, six in Prayagraj, three in Ambedkar Nagar and one in Balrampur,” Uttar Pradesh Relief Commissioner Sanjay Goyal said.

Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has expressed grief over the deaths and has announced ex-gratia of 4 lakhs for the families of the deceased. He also ordered officials to provide proper medical care to the injured and help the families of victims of this natural calamity immediately.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has expressed condolences to the families of those who have lost their lives due to heavy rains and lightning strikes in some districts of Bihar and UP.


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