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Pro-Active Governance and Timely Implementation (PRAGATI)

Paper: General Studies 2

Topic: e-governance- applications, models, successes, limitations, and potential; citizens charters, transparency & accountability and institutional and other measures.

Why in the news?

The Prime Minister, chaired his thirtieth interaction through PRAGATI – the ICT-based, multi-modal platform for Pro-Active Governance and Timely Implementation. He reviewed the progress of PM Awas Yojana (Urban), Ayushman Bharat, Sugamya Bharat Abhiyan among others.

What is PRAGATI?

  • It is a multi-purpose and multi-modal platform that is aimed at addressing common man’s grievances, and simultaneously monitoring and reviewing important programmes and projects of the Government of India as well as projects flagged by State Governments.
  • The PRAGATI platform uniquely bundles three latest technologies: Digital data management, video-conferencing and geo-spatial technology. It also offers a unique combination in the direction of cooperative federalism since it brings on one stage the Secretaries of Government of India and the Chief Secretaries of the States. 
  • With this, the Prime Minister is able to discuss the issues with the concerned Central and State officials with full information and latest visuals of the ground level situation.
  • It is a three-tier system (PMO, Union Government Secretaries, and Chief Secretaries of the States)
  • Prime Minister holds a monthly programme where he interacts with the Government of India Secretaries, and Chief Secretaries through Video-conferencing enabled by data and geo-informatics visuals; The programme is held once in every month on Fourth Wednesday at 3.30 PM and is known as PRAGATI Day.

 

United Nations Convention on International Settlement Agreements (UNISA)

Paper: General Studies 2

Topic: Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests

Why in the news?

The Union Cabinet has approved the signing of the United Nations Convention on International Settlement Agreements (UNISA) resulting from mediation by the Republic of India scheduled to be held at Singapore on 7th August, 2019, or at United Nations Headquarters.

What is the UNISA?

  • The United Nations General Assembly adopted the United Nations Convention on International Settlement Agreements Resulting from Mediation (“the Convention”) on 20th December 2018. 
  • The General Assembly authorized that the Convention will open for signature at a signing ceremony to be held on 7th August 2019 in Singapore and will be known as the “Singapore Convention on Mediation” (the Convention).
  • The Convention provides a uniform and efficient framework for the enforcement of international settlement agreements resulting from mediation and for allowing parties to invoke such agreements, akin to the framework that the Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards (New York, 1958) (the “New York Convention”) provides for arbitral awards. 
  • The Convention defines two additional grounds upon which a court may, on its own motion, refuse to grant relief. Those grounds relate to the fact that a dispute would not be capable of settlement by mediation or would be contrary to public policy.

ISRO Technical Liaison Unit

Paper: General Studies 3

Topic: Awareness in the fields of IT, Space, Computers, robotics, nano-technology, bio-technology and issues relating to intellectual property rights.

Why in the news?

The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has approved the setting up of ISRO Technical Liaison Unit (ITLU) in Moscow, Russia.

What is the ISRO Technical Liaison Unit (ITLU)?

  • The ISRO Technical Liaison Unit (ITLU) at Moscow will enable effective technical coordination for timely interventions on diversified matters with Russia and neighbouring countries for realization of the programmatic targets of ISRO. 
  • The Liaison Officer, deputed at ITLU from ISRO provides technical information about the developments in research and technology and inputs arising from their meetings with researchers, government agencies and industries in the respective countries. They also support the ongoing bilateral programmes of cooperation in space technology and act on behalf of ISRO on the matters referred.
  • ISRO will be able to collaborate with Space agencies/industries in Russia and neighbouring countries for mutually synergetic outcomes.
  • ISRO’s Gaganyaan programme requires development of some of the key technologies and establishment of specialized facilities, which are essential to support life in space.
  • Keeping in view the 15th August, 2022 timeline for realization of the Gaganyaan human space programme, it is prudent to avail technical cooperation from International space agencies, who have already demonstrated their technical capabilities in specific areas.  Russia, being one of the space faring nations, it is envisaged to collaborate with Russia extensively in various fields of relevance.

 

Atal Community Innovation Centre (ACIC)

Paper: General Studies 3

Topic: Indian Economy and issues relating to planning, mobilization of resources, growth, development and employment.

Why in the news?

  • The Atal Innovation Mission (AIM), flagship initiative of NITI Aayog, launched the Atal Community Innovation Centre (ACIC) program in NITI Aayog, New Delhi. The programme aims at spurring community Innovation in underserved and unserved areas of the country.

What is Atal Innovation Mission?

  • The Atal Innovation Mission (AIM) is a flagship initiative set up by the NITI Aayog to promote innovation and entrepreneurship across the length and breadth of the country, based on a detailed study and deliberations on innovation and entrepreneurial needs of India in the years ahead.
  • AIM is also envisaged as an umbrella innovation organization that would play an instrumental role in alignment of innovation policies between central, state and sectoral innovation schemes incentivizing the establishment and promotion of an ecosystem of innovation and entrepreneurship at various levels – higher secondary schools, science, engineering and higher academic institutions, and SME/MSME industry, corporate and NGO levels. 
  • Long term goals of AIM include establishment and promotion of Small Business Innovation Research and Development at a national scale (AIM SBIR) for the SME/MSME/startups, and in rejuvenating Science and Technology innovations in major research institutions of the country like CSIR (Council of Scientific Industrial Research), Agri Research (ICAR) and Medical Research (ICMR) aligned to national socio-economic needs.
  • It involves several initiatives such as Atal Tinkering Labs, Atal Incubators, Atal New India Challenge and Atal Grand Challenge.