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Launch of IPR Enforcement Toolkit for Police and IPR Awareness Campaign for Children

The Commerce & Industry Minister Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman launched an IPR Enforcement Toolkit for Police today. The toolkit has been jointly prepared by Cell for IPR Promotion and Management (CIPAM) and Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI).  This toolkit will be a ready reckoner for police officials across the country in dealing with IP crimes, specifically Trade Marks counterfeiting and Copyrights piracy. In addition to details of offences under various laws, it provides for checklists for registering a complaint and conducting search and seizures. It also lays down general guidelines for search and seizure in case of IP crimes. This toolkit will be provided to all state police departments across the nation and will assist them in dealing with the cases relating to Trademarks and Copyrights infringements.

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“Swachh Survekshan -2017″ begins under Swachh Bharat Mission

Swachh Survekshan web500 Indian cities to be ranked on cleanliness and urban sanitation under the Survekshan

Quality Council of India (QCI) to conduct the performance evaluation of the Swachh Survekshan

In order to encourage a healthy contest between Indian cities for improving cleanliness standards, the Ministry of Urban Development (MoUD) today started the “Swachh Survekshan 2017” survey, ranking of cities on cleanliness and other aspects of urban sanitation. Under Swachh Survekshan 2017, a survey will be conducted to rank 500 cities of India on cleanliness and urban sanitation from 4th January 2017.

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Copy-Paste Government : Modi’s Claim of ‘New’ Maternity Benefit Scheme’ is not New


modi-addressPrime Minister Narendra Modi, in his address to the nation on 31 December 2016, announced that Rs 6,000 will be transferred directly to the bank accounts of pregnant women who undergo institutional delivery/and vaccinate their children.

He even tweeted about it, claiming it was a new scheme.

We fact-checked his claim, and found that the provision of Rs 6,000 to pregnant women already exists as part of the National Food Security Act (NFSA), 2013.

Therefore, his claim of the benefit being a new scheme is incorrect.

“The Act also has a special focus on the nutritional support to women and children,” according to the relevant provision of the NFSA. “Besides meal to pregnant women and lactating mothers during pregnancy and six months after the child birth, such women will also be entitled to receive maternity benefit of not less than Rs 6,000.”

The Indira Gandhi Matritva Sahyog Yojana (IGMSY), a maternity benefit programme introduced in 2010, provides for conditional cash transfer for pregnant and lactating women of 19 years or older for first two live births. It is operational in 52 districts as a “pilot”.

The cash incentive provided under the scheme was increased from Rs 4,000 to Rs 6,000 in 2013 to comply with the minimum maternity entitlement provision of the NFSA.

Even after three years of the Act being passed, the benefit has not been implemented in any state, except Tamil Nadu.

 More than 60 academics and activists had written a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi in November 2016, and urged him to implement the maternity benefit under the NFSA.

“The nation is paying a heavy price for this violation of the Act,” the letter said. “Maternity entitlements are essential to address India’s staggering problem of low birth weights, poor maternal health and severe hardship during pregnancy.”

The All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam government in Tamil Nadu, in 1987, under former chief minister MG Ramachandran, launched the state’s flagship programme for pregnant women–Dr Muthulakshmi Reddy Maternity Benefit Scheme, named after the prominent women’s rights activist.

The first-of-its-kind scheme in the country initially provided an amount of Rs 300 to every woman below the poverty line to help cover the expenses incurred during childbirth.

The sum was increased to Rs 500 in 1995. A little over a decade later, the amount was raised more than ten-fold to Rs 6,000. Then, in 2011, the state government doubled the sum to Rs 12,000.

“Not a single state has implemented this important benefit mandated by NFSA till date. Tamil Nadu is the only state doing this,” Job Zachariah, who heads the field office of United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund, in Chennai, told

Tamil Nadu has the second lowest infant mortality rate (20 per 1,000 live births) among all states in India, only behind Kerala (12), according to data from the Registrar General of India. The state’s maternal mortality rate is 90 per 1,00,000 live births compared to the national average of 178.

 Finance Minister Arun Jaitley was considering a proposal to hike allocation for the Ministry of Women and Child Development by 20 percent with an emphasis on universalising this maternity benefit scheme, The Economic Times reported in December 2016.

Maternity entitlements can and should be designed to help improve maternal nutrition and pregnancy weight gain for a large fraction of the population, according to this 2016 paper by researchers from Research Institute for Compassionate Economics (RICE).

Start up in India : Is India’s start up boom a bubble that has begun to burst? – Zoya Brar


start-up-webWith young entrepreneurs re-writing the rules of the business game, an entrepreneurship revolution has swept India in recent years. In a much publicized report in 2015, industry body NASSCOM put India among the first five largest start-up communities in the world with the number of startups crossing 4,200. With the buzz following the introduction of the ‘Start-Up, Stand Up India’ and ‘Make-in-India’ initiatives and the promises made by the government to ensure a start-up friendly environment, the entrepreneurial community has brimmed with anticipation and confidence.

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PETA Points Out That Sharp Kite-Flying Strings Hurt and Kill Many Birds and Humans

New Delhi – Today, in response to People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) India’s petition calling for a nationwide ban on all forms of sharp kite-flying strings called manja, a bench headed by Justice Swatanter Kumar, Chair of the National Green Tribunal (NGT),passed an interim prohibitory order banning the procurement, stocking, sale and use ofmanja made of nylon thread which is also called Chinese dor or other sharp material, as well as synthetic or cotton thread coated with glass or other hazardous compounds until the next hearing, which is on 1st February 2017.The interim ban is expected to save many lives as it comes just a month before Makar Sankranti, a festival during which there are many bird and human deaths caused by manja.

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All you need to know about tax on gold and jewellery

There will be no seizure of gold jewellery and ornaments to the extent of 500 gm per married woman, 250 gm per unmarried woman and 100 gm per male member.

Amendments to the I-T laws do not seek to tax inherited and jewellery as also those items that are purchased through disclosed or agriculture income, the government said on Thursday.

The Lok Sabha earlier this week passed the Taxation Laws (Second Amendment) Bill, which proposes steep tax and penalty of up to 85 per cent on undisclosed wealth discovered by tax authorities during search and seizure.

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