1. NITI Aayog decided to set up expert group to draft Model Land Leasing Law
i. NITI Aayog on 24 August 2015 decided to set up an experts committee to prepare a model land leasing law, which can be adopted by states as per their local needs.
ii. The decision on the matter was taken at a meeting of Chief Secretaries and Principal Secretaries of Revenue and Land, which was chaired by Vice-Chairman of NITI Aayog Arvind Panagariya.
iii. The representatives of the states generally agreed that land leasing, updating of land records and land titling would be win-win steps for all affected parties and expressed keen interest in making progress on them in the months to come.
iv. It was agreed that the NITI Aayog Vice-Chairperson will appoint a committee of experts to prepare a model land leasing law that the states can adopt to suit their local needs.
v. The NITI Aayog in consultation with the Department of Land Resources will assist the interested states in moving forward with updating and digitising land records in accordance with the best practices. Land related issues such as land leasing, updating and digitisation of land records and land titling are important state issues in need of a fresh look and possible actions by the states.
2. Govt, Apollo Hospitals partner to launch new health service
i. The Government on Tuesday launched a health service called SEHAT (Social Endeavour for Health And Telemedicine) along with Apollo Hospitals, which will connect 60,000 Common Service Centres (CSCs) across the country to a common network.
ii. This will provide healthcare access to millions of citizens irrespective of geographical location or connectivity through the CSCs. The Minister for Communications and IT, Ravi Shankar Prasad, who inaugurated the service, said quality and affordable healthcare is one of the emerging needs of citizens in rural areas.
iii. CSC SPV and Apollo have come together to address this issue and design a workable solution. CSC has been delivering tele-consultation services with support from Apollo and Medanta in some areas and now with this initiative the tele-consultation services are being extended to 60,000 CSCs across the country.
iv. CSCs will also provide diagnostic services and promote sale of generic drugs through collaboration with the Ministry of Health – by setting up of the ‘Jan Aasudhi Stores.
v. Through our Prime Minister’s ‘Digital India’ initiative more Indians shall get access to e-services and we are delighted to be a partner with the GoI in this path-breaking endeavour to link SEHAT to 60,000 CSCs.
3. Union Government released Postal stamp on Ashoka
i. Union Telecom Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad on 24 August 2015 released a commemorative postal stamp on emperor Ashoka. The postal stamp of 5 rupees will be available for sale in the post offices.
ii. Prasad announced to release the postal stamp during a Bharatiya Janata Party function to celebrate the birth anniversary of Ashoka.
iii. One of India's greatest emperors, Ashoka reigned over a realm that stretched from the Hindu Kush Mountains in the west to Bengal in the East and covered the entire Indian subcontinent except parts of present-day Tamil Nadu and Kerala.
iv. The empire's capital was Pataliputra (in Magadha, present-day Bihar), with provincial capitals at Taxila and Ujjain.
4. Justice M L Tahaliyani sworn in as Lokayukta of Maharashtra
i. Justice Madanlal Laxmandas Tahaliyani has sworn-in as the new Lokayukta of Maharashtra. He was administered the oath of office by the Governor Vidyasagar Rao at the oath taking ceremony held in Raj Bhavan in Mumbai.
ii. Justice Tahaliyani will succeed Justice PB Gaikwad whose term as Lokayukta had ended on July 2014. He is a retired judge of the Bombay High Court.
iii. Justice Tahaliyani was born on 23 December, 1953 at Sardar Shahar in Rajasthan. He was often called a ‘green judge’ due to his passion for nature. He had started his legal practising career Gondia and Chandrapur in Maharashtra after obtaining law degree from Nagpur in 1977.
iv. He was appointed as Assistant Public Prosecutor at Gadchiroli in 1979 and had worked in that capacity at Gadchiroli, Desaiganj, Sironcha and Warora. He also has served as Chief Metropolitan Magistrate of Mumbai in 1997. He was elevated as High Court Judge in 2011.
5. Tata Trusts ink MoU with Andhra Pradesh Government to develop 264 Smart Villages
i. Tata Trusts has inked a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Andhra Pradesh Government to develop 264 villages. Under this initiative, all 264 villages in the Vijayawada constituency will be developed in order to transform them into smart villages.
ii. The project has been jointly undertaken by local Lok Sabha MP Kesineni Srinivas and the Tata Trust as part of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) of Tata Group. It should be noted that this is the first of its kind of project undertaken by Tata Trust in the country to develop all villages of a single Parliamentary constituency.
iii. As part of this initiative, the trusts will work in the areas of education, drinking water, health and nutrition, self-employment for the youth, bamboo cultivation, fisheries etc. by developing each village. Around 2.5 lakh households in all villages of this constituency will benefit from this ambitious project.
iv. The identified activities which will be under taken in this initiative are based on comprehensive household survey in all villages which was conducted by Tata Trust.
6. RBI okays re-appointment of Rana Kapoor as YES Bank MD, CEO
i. YES Bank co-founder Rana Kapoor has got approval from the Reserve Bank of India for his re-appointment as MD and CEO of the bank for 3 years.
ii. This will be with effect from September 1, 2015.
iii. With reference to above, pursuant to the approval of the board of directors and the approval of shareholders at the 11th AGM held on June 6 2015, YES BANK has received approval from the Reserve Bank of India for re-appointment of Mr Rana Kapoor as MD & CEO for a period of three (3) years.
7. Jamaican Shelly-Ann Fraser retained Women’s 100 meters gold at World Championships in Athletics
i. Jamaican sprinter Shelly-Ann Fraser on 24 August 2015 retained Women’s 100 meters gold at the 2015 World Championships in Athletics by finishing the race in 10.76 seconds.
ii. The silver medal was won by Dafne Schippers (10.81) of Netherlands and the Bronze went to Tori Bowie (the USA) who completed the race in 10.86 seconds.
iii. The biannual event was held at the Bird’s Nest Stadium in the Chinese capital Beijing where she won the gold in the same category in 2008 Olympics. Her only other Olympic gold was during the 2012 London Olympics.
iv. Fraser-Pryce continued the Jamaican sprint dominance at the event as Usain Bolt won the title in the 100m event on 23 August 2015.