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News update 11th June 2018

  1. SCO summit ends: India stays firm, refuses to back China’s Belt and Road Initiative

New Delhi was the lone dissenting voice against the project in the joint declaration that was signed Sunday following the conclusion of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) summit in Qingdao, China.

INDIA REFUSED TO ENDORSE THE CHINESE BELT

More than a year after boycotting the Belt and Road Forum in Beijing, India again refused to endorse the ambitious Chinese Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). New Delhi was the lone dissenting voice against the project in the joint declaration that was signed Sunday following the conclusion of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) summit in Qingdao, China.

 

Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid the ground for India’s opposition to the project during his plenary speech when he said that India welcomed connectivity projects that respected the sovereignty and territorial integrity of nations.

SIGNATORIES TO QINGDAO JOINT DECLARATION

After the two-day SCO summit, the eight full members signed the Qingdao joint declaration but India was missing from the section that referred to the BRI. “The Republic of Kazakhstan, the Kyrgyz Republic, the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, the Russian Federation, the Republic of Tajikistan, and the Republic of Uzbekistan reaffirm their support for the ‘Belt and Road Initiative’ proposed by China and affirm that all parties should implement the ‘Belt and Road Initiative’ to promote the ‘Belt and Road’ initiative,” stated the declaration.

The BRI, proposed by Chinese President Xi Jinping in 2013, is aimed at building a trade and infrastructure network connecting Asia with Europe and Africa along ancient trade routes. India has staunchly opposed the project citing the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) – an important part of the BRI – that goes through Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK). Citing its opposition to the CPEC, India had skipped the Belt and Road Forum in May last year, which 29 state heads had attended.

  1. Now CBI investigates the role of top bankers in Kingfisher Airlines loans case

Kingfisher owes over Rs 9,000 crore to at least 17 lenders, including SBI, IDBI Bank, Punjab National Bank, Bank of India, Bank of Baroda and United Bank of India.

CBI INQUEST

The CBI is probing the role of top bankers in connection with the loans given by banks to Kingfisher Airlines Ltd (KFAL), promoted by Vijay Mallya, The Indian Express has learned.

SUMMON ISSUED TO THE BANKERS

The agency has written to the consortium that lent to Kingfisher Airlines and a few bankers, including the former chairman of a public sector bank, seeking information and documents. It has also summoned a few bankers for recording their statements, sources said.

The latest investigation was launched after a London court, which is hearing the Mallya extradition matter, asked Indian authorities to explain their case against some of the bankers as it observed that rules were being violated by Indian banks which sanctioned the loans to Kingfisher Airlines.

  1. In remote villages of Kashmir, cardiac patients get lifeline through WhatsApp

Doctors and cardiologists from the tertiary centers are connected through WhatsApp groups. And doctors posted at government health facilities in remote areas are advised on the line of treatment round the clock.

BRIEF FACTS

A FEW WEEKS ago, when 27-year-old Bilal Ahmad Chopan, a laborer from Banihal in J&K, was rushed to the local hospital with severe chest pain, doctors quickly conducted an ECG, which confirmed that the patient had suffered a heart attack.

“Without wasting any time, I uploaded the ECG on our real-time network. Doctors and senior cardiologists advised me to go for thrombolysis (using medication to dissolve clots in the blood vessels). I acted immediately and we saved the life of the patient… In such emergencies, the crucial first hour is the golden hour,” says Dr. Auqib Najam from the sub-district hospital in Ramban district.

LIFESAVER OF THE PERSONS RESIDING IN REMOTE AREAS

“After providing basic treatment, Chopan was referred to Srinagar’s Sher-I-Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences (SKIMS) where stenting was done,” says Najam, referring to the use of a stent to keep the patient’s arteries open.

Chopan is among hundreds of patients whose lives have been saved by doctors posted in remote areas of the valley under Save Hearts Initiative launched by the Directorate of Health Services, Kashmir, last December.

According to officials, the department uses a “hub and spoke model” to provide life-saving treatment to those suffering cardiac emergencies, particularly Myocardial Infarction or heart attack.

SOME OTHER HOSPITALS WHO HAVE BEEN WORKING

“The tertiary care centers in Srinagar — SKIMS and Shri Maharaja Hari Singh (SMHS) Hospital — work as the hub, and the peripheral district and sub-district hospitals function as spokes,” says Dr. Saleem-ur-Rehman, Director-General, Health Services, Kashmir.

Doctors and cardiologists from the tertiary centers are connected through WhatsApp groups. And doctors posted at government health facilities in remote areas are advised on the line of treatment round the clock.

“As soon as suspected cardiac emergency patients are brought to peripheral hospitals, they are taken to the emergency room for the ECG. The doctor immediately shares the ECG on a dedicated network, which operates 24×7. The cardiologist from SKIMS and other specialists give their advice,” says Dr. Nasir Shams, who is from the Health Department and is actively involved in the programme.

STATISTICS

According to official data, more than 1,500 cardiac emergencies have been treated under this initiative, including 120 heart attack cases. Officials say the Health Department is now adding Kashmiri doctors working abroad to the WhatsApp group to take advantage of different time zones.

In Banihal, Najam says 5-6 patients have been referred to SKIMS in Srinagar. “The best part is all of them survived, and are coming to us for follow-up treatment. I am among around 200 other medical officers who have been trained by the department for this programme, especially in reading ECGs,” he says.

At SMHS, he says, the lives of over 100 patients have been saved after they were referred from peripheral centers under the programme.

Dr. Shafat Shams, who is the medical officer at the sub-district hospital in Tangdhar, says he tackled two cardiac emergency cases recently. “Now we are dealing with heart attack cases at our level. We are saving hearts and lives,” he says.

  1. Economically weaker sections from all castes should get quota: Om Prakash Rajbhar

Om Prakash Rajbhar suggested the 27 percent reservation for backward classes be divided into three categories: backward, more backward and most backward. Rajbhar said the rich were harassing the poor even as they give power to them. He asked people to take back power from the rich.

CLASS-BASED RESERVATION

Uttar Pradesh minister and Suheldev Bhartiya Samaj Party (SBSP) chief Om Prakash Rajbhar on Sunday called for a class-based reservation for the poor to benefit irrespective of caste.  “There are poor in every caste… A survey should be done and reservation should be given to poor of every caste based on their economic status,’’ Rajbhar said at a public meeting in eastern Uttar Pradesh’s Kushinagar district.

Rajbhar said he backs reservation within reservation for the backward classes to ensure their sons and daughters also become constables, inspectors, clerks, and tehsildars. He suggested the 27 percent reservation for backward classes be divided into three categories: backward, more backward and most backward. Rajbhar said the rich were harassing the poor even as they give power to them. He asked people to take back power from the rich.

Rajhbar cited liquor ban in certain place in Mathura and added he would campaign for banning alcohol across the state. He said even the excise department should be closed while asking the women to join him for the liquor campaign and gather in Lucknow for it. Rajhbar cautioned his audience that all those who have “looted” the public would seek votes now that 2019 election is around the corner.

  1. Dubai-based MBM Group, Mumbai government join hands for Dharavi project

Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis on Saturday held meetings with the three groups in Dubai. The visit was part of a tour by Fadnavis to attract foreign investment.

DUBAI BASED MBM GROUP IN ASSOCIATION WITH MUMBAI GOVT.

The Dubai-based MBM Group has agreed to partner with the Maharashtra government for the redevelopment of Asia’s biggest slum Dharavi along with other infrastructure projects in Mumbai, while the DP World Group has agreed for collaborations in logistic parks and the Thumbay Group has shown interest in healthcare projects.

Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis on Saturday held meetings with the three groups in Dubai. The visit was part of a tour by Fadnavis to attract foreign investment. It will be followed by a series of meetings and deliberations with companies based in the United States and Canada.

Investment and growth through the foreign partnership are being explored in core sectors including agriculture, infrastructure and information, and technology.

DHARVI PROJECT

The official statement issued by the state government said, “After leaving Mumbai, the Fadnavis delegation halted at Dubai which was the first phase of the investment drive. Indian Ambassador Navdeep Suri welcomed the chief minister. It was followed by a meeting with DP World Group’s chairman and chief executive officer (CEO) Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem.

A senior officer, who is part of the delegation, said, “DP World expressed the desire to work with the state government for building logistic parks. The group has shown enthusiasm to work in the logistic parks sector in Nagpur in Vidarbha region of Maharashtra.”

DP World is a leading global investment company.

In the evening, Fadnavis met with MBM Group chairman Sheikh Mohammed Bin Maktoum Bin Juma Al Maktoum who agreed to work with the state government on the redevelopment of Dharavi along with related infrastructure projects in Mumbai.

REDEVELOPMENT OF DHARVI SLUMS

The redevelopment of the Dharavi slums spread across 178 hectares is amongst mega projects high on the Mumbai makeover plan undertaken by the state government. Although official data shows that Dharavi is divided into five sectors having 60,000 houses, unofficially, the number is pegged at 1.10 lakh.

MEETING

The meeting was between Fadnavis and Thumbay Group president Thumbay Moideen. The company, which is among the 100 leading groups in the Middle East, specializes in 13 diverse fields and has established itself in the field of healthcare and education. It agreed to work with the Maharashtra government in public healthcare projects.

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