Thursday, November 21, 2019

World Congress on Leptospirosis held at ICMR-RMRC, Port Blair




Port Blair, Nov 20: The Regional Medical Research Centre (RMRC) Port Blair, World Health Organisation (WHO) and Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) jointly organised a two day World Congress on Leptospirosis at Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose Auditorium of RMRC on Nov 18 & 19, 2019. The event was formally inaugurated on Nov 18 in the conference hall of RMRC, Port Blair.
Addressing the inaugural function, Dr. Nhu Nguyen Tran Minh, Team Leader at WHO Country Office, India World Health Organization, said that the WHO is looking forward to the documentation of the outcome of the congress that will be drafted at the end of congress. He said that a special session was conducted to get suggestions of delegates from various countries regarding the current burden of leptospirosis in their respective countries and on management of leptospirosis.
Dr. John Timony of Kentucky University, who chaired the inaugural function, suggested that a document collating all the recommendations of the congress may be brought out as "Port Blair Declarations on Leptospirosis".
Dr. Marga Goris of the Royal Tropical Institute (KIT), Amsterdam, the Netherlands, told that the International Society will take appropriate action based on the experiences on addressing the challenge of leptospirosis shared by the delegates during the sessions.
Dr. P. Vijayachari welcomed all the delegates and spoke on the genesis and importance of the congress in the context of the global climate change and the increasing frequency of extreme weather events.
Speaking on the occasion, Dr. Shiv Shanker Singh, Senior Medical Consultant, G.B. Pant Hospital said that the RMRC not only identified the cause of Andaman Haemorrhagic Fever as Leptospira but has made tremendous contributions in understanding various diseases such as Dengue, Chikungunya and pandemic Influenza in the islands. The Congress will conclude today and will be followed by an International Training Workshop on Laboratory Methods on Leptospirosis, in which participants from several Southeast Asian countries are participating. 
Sixty eight delegates are participating in the congress, which includes 23 delegates are from 11 countries viz. USA, Brazil, The Netherlands, Switzerland, France, Iran, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Indonesia, Japan, New Zealand and 16 national experts.

Shri Kuldeep shares his vision for A&N Islands' development



Port Blair, Nov 20: As part of National Press Day celebration, all media persons were felicitated on Nov 17, 2019 by Cooperative Sector, A&N islands at a function at Megapode Resort, Port Blair.
Speaking on the occasion as chief guest, Shri Kuldeep Rai Sharma, Member of Parliament and Chairman, Project Coordination Committee, National Cooperative Union of India said, media here has been contributing immensely in the progress and development by way of disseminating useful and relevant information. It has been bringing issues concerning the people lands before the society, system and administration which the authorities strive to resolve. In its bid to pay back their dues, since last 2-3 years, the Cooperative Sector has been felicitating the media persons for their outstanding contributions in the society at large, he said. He also narrated about how cooperative sector has been striving to bring positive changes in the society and help improve the life of the people of the islands. He said that as a Member of Parliament, he has been focusing on four vital issues. The first being water which he said is an important component of life. He has submitted proposals to the UT administration on enhancing the water storage capacity. He stated that while UTs like Delhi provides water to crores of people with marginal rainfall, we have not been unable to provide adequate quantity of water to a population of around 4 lakh despite receiving more than 3000 mm of rainfall annually.  "I have always wished people of these islands should get adequate and quality water 24x7 round the year. In the past, I proposed development of catchment areas from Buniyadabad to Dundus Point Jetty so as to ensure optimal use of rainwater. Similarly, water supply projects at Flat Bay, Rutland, Phongy Balu should be expedited. All these sources can be connected with pipelines so that water can be supplied to any region that experiences water shortage. Construction of rain water reservoirs, lakes, ponds etc in different parts of these islands will also help solve this problem to a great extent. Tapping water sources in Great Nicobar Island can also generate employment if water is exported to dry States like Chennai and supplied to cargo ships passing through the Malacca Straits as per their requirement. Even water can be transported to areas like Diglipur by laying pipelines from Port Blair to Diglipur.
The other important sector is tourism which has tremendous growth potential to generate employment. However, promotion of tourism hugely depends on availability of abundance water. Tourism can generate both revenue and employment if the water issue is resolved and our Islands become a surplus water State. Improvement in the health sector is also a focus area for the Member of Parliament. He is of the view that despite adequate funds, the Health sector here still needs massive improvement. Health sector in the islands can be improved only when each and every health centre, spread across the islands are provided with proper health care facilities, latest and innovative technology, health care equipments, staff & doctors. Improvement in the sports sector is another focus area, the Member of Parliament is working on. He said that there is a need to generate the interest of the youth towards sports and games. In view of the facts that the younger generations are more inclined towards drugs and banned substances, more sports infrastructure facilities should be created so that more and more youth can be motivated towards sports and games. He also informed that he has provided funds under MPLAD for renovation and repair of three stadiums in the Islands. He said the development of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands can be possible only when the islands have its own Legislative Assembly. Unless until a Legislative Assembly is formed in the islands. He further informed that he has placed three bills pertaining to the development of the islands for discussion in this session of Parliament.

National Press Day celebrated befittingly in isles


Port Blair, Nov 20: The Directorate of Information, Publicity and Tourism, A & N Administration along with the local media fraternity celebrated National Press Day at Megapode Resort on Nov 16, 2019. The programme was begun with a fabulous welcome song by the students of RGT Public School.
Meanwhile, a seminar on the topic 'Reporting-Interpretation: A Journey' was organized on the occasion. The Secretary, IP&T, Dr Pooja Joshi was the chief guest of the function, while the Director, IP&T, Dr. Angel Bhati Chauhan and Deputy Director, PIB, Port Blair, Mr Nilesh Kumar Kalbhor graced the occasion as the guests of honor.
Greeting the media fraternity, Dr Pooja Joshi, said that freedom of press is essence of a vibrant democracy. "Since the country's independence, the media has been playing a vital role. The theme for this year's celebration not only applies for the media but for the society as a whole. There should be a difference between view and viewpoint," she said. Mr Nilesh Kumar Kalbhor also spoke on the occasion.

Villagers stage protest demonstration against proposed acquisition of land for Airport-II



TMI Correspondent
Port Blair, Nov 13: Hundreds of villagers from Burma Nallah and other villages staged a protest demonstration today against the proposed move by the Andaman & Nicobar Administration for acquisition of land from Pema Junction to Burma Nallah, purportedly for construction of Airport-II and other development purpose.
According to Smt. Bhanumathi, President, Barmanallah Village Welfare Committee, from these particular villages most of the milk is supplied to the entire Port Blair city and if they lose the land it will be difficult for them to establish again, and there are many people in these villages who are doing agriculture and their only source of income is depends on ancestral piece of land. "The people of Burma Nallah and its adjoining villages have toiled hard for several years to finally settle down in the area. Now how does the administration expect us to be driven out of this place and start a life afresh," she exclaimed. "There is no way that we can be cowed down and we will not accept any alternative even at the cost of our life," Bhanumathi declared.
According to reports, the Sub-Divisional Magistrate, South Andaman came to the spot with the map and assured to provide adequate compensation to villagers against acquisition of land, which instead fumed the protest. Later in the evening, DySP Ajay Rai came to the protest demonstration spot, and after fixing an appointment of the villagers to meet the Secretary of the Lt Governor for 14/11/2019, the protest was called off.

550th Birth Anniversary of Shri Guru Nanak Devji



As part of 550th Birth Anniversary of Shri Guru Nanak Devji, the Chairperson Andaman and Nicobar State Social Welfare Board, Dr. Poonam Arora has inaugurated a photo exhibition at Khalsa Public SSS, Gurudwara Lane, Port Blair on Nov 11, 2019 organized by The Field of Outreach Bureau, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, GoI. Office bearers and members of Management Committee of Dr. Diwan Singh Gurudwara, Dr. Sarabjeet Kaur Jagpal, Principal Khalsa Public Senior Secondary School, members of media fraternity and many islanders were present on the occasion. In the photo exhibition, the life history of Shri Guru Nanak Devji, and His pravachans which are still valid even after 550 years in the modern era, are on display.

ALHW to complete Dry Dock Extension project by August 2021




TMI Correspondent
Port Blair, Nov 13: A delegation of the Andaman Nicobar Media Federation (ANMF) has visited the project site of Dry Dock Extension at Marine Dockyard on Nov 9, 2019, where senior officials of ALHW briefed them about the execution of the project.
Earlier, in the conference hall of ALHW, the Deputy Chief Engineer, Andaman Lakshadweep Harbour Works (ALHW), Smt. Mamata Jijith has explained about the Dry Dock Extension project through a power point presentation. Smt. Jijith said, the project "Extension of Dry Dock - II at Marine Dockyard including supply, installation and commissioning of Dry dock pumps and accessories in Port Blair, South Andaman" has been sanctioned by Ministry of Shipping under Central Sector Plan Scheme to the tune of Rs. 96.24 Cr with the stipulated date of completion of 42 months. The project has been awarded to M/s. RDS Project Ltd., Contractor, Port Blair by observing all the codal formalities and the preliminary work commenced at site since 07.03.2017. The scope of work will extend the existing dock by 90 more meters in length to accommodate more vessels and bigger vessels. This facility will double its capacity for ship repair facilities at Port Blair and generate employment opportunities as well as generate huge revenue to the islands. She said that presently 300 employees are working and due to this project 50 more employment will be generated.
The project envisages extension of Existing Dry Dock - II at Marine Dockyard by 90 x 20 x 8.50 mtr founding on RCC Bored piles including providing erecting & commissioning of various type of Mechanical equipments and Electrical installations. Construction of allied structures such as Dewatering pump house, Capstan house, Workshop buildings, Electrical Control room, Generator room, Crane parking shed, Vehicle parking shed, 02 nos. Overhead Tank of its 1.20 Lakhs Ltrs. capacity each at Dockyard I & II and an underground RCC sump of capacity of 1.20 Lakhs Litre. The Andaman Lakshadweep Harbour Works has set a deadline of 2021 for completion of the Dry Dock Extension at Marine Dockyard.
She further informed that, the ALHW has taken up a major project of extension of new dry dock - II at Marine Dockyard to augment existing ship repair facilities at Port Blair. Currently, the piling work of the project is in progress at dock area. In order to boost ship building & ship repairing industry and facilitate the "Make in India" initiative of the Govt. of India., the existing ship repair facilities at Port Blair are being augmented by extending the existing dock length".
In principle, the Ministry of Shipping has approved the proposed RCE for construction of the Extension of Dry Dock-II at Port Blair would be Rs.123.95 Crores which is 28.80% excess over the originally sanctioned cost and the time overrun to implement the extra work would be 24 months i.e. August 2021. After getting the in principle approval from Ministry, the work resumed at site during the month of September-2019. The works is in active progress and try to complete the full scope of the project before the extended targeted schedule of August 2021, the delegation was told.
The Executive Engineer (OS), Mr. P. Ramachandran, Assistant Engineer (Civil) Dry Dock Extn., S. Kasinathan, and Mr. P. Muthaiah, Executive Engineer, ALHW and media team were present on the on the occasion.

Pre-Application conference held at New Delhi for eco-tourism projects in A&N Islands

 New Delhi / Port Blair, Nov 13: The UT Administration of Andaman & Nicobar Islands organized a pre-application conference for four eco-tourism projects in Andaman in Long Island, Smith Island, Aves Island and Saheed Dweep and three eco-tourism projects in Lakshadweep in Minicoy Island, Suheli Island and Kadmat Island, today in New Delhi at Pravasi Bharatiya Kendra. After a detailed feasibility study and investor's consultations over a period of one year, Request for Qualification (RFQ) documents of these eco-tourism projects were issued for PPP procurement in the month of October 2019.
The overwhelming response for the pre-application conference indicates huge interest for the projects among potential investors. Some of the potential investors and stakeholders present in today's conference are Oberoi Group, Taj Group of Hotels, ITC Hotels, Park Hotels, Royal Orchid, Bird Group of Hotels, Marriot, Indiabulls, J M Baxi Group, Girish Arora of Andaman Chambers of Commerce & Industries, Youth Chamber of Commerce & Industry. The Austrian Ambassador, H.E. Mrs. Brigitte Oppinger-Walchshofer was also present in the conference.
The CEO of NITI Aayog, Amitabh Kant, Shri Chetan B. Sanghi, Chief Secretary of Andaman & Nicobar UT and Shri S. Asker Ali, MD, SPORTS, Lakshadweep presented project propositions and interacted with stakeholders during the conference. It was clearly emphasized by NITI Aayog and respective UT Administrations that the objective is to create high end tourism destinations in an environmentally sustainable manner so that the ecology of the islands is fully protected. It was also emphasized that tourism activities in those islands will be governed by carrying capacity of the islands estimated by the government.
The applications for the projects are due in December 2019. It is expected that renewed international and domestic investors will participate in these unique and exclusive island development projects.

Thursday, November 7, 2019

Adulterated Biryani served in Hotel ; High time to check Food Safety Standards by concerned authority




TMI Bureau
Port Blair, Nov 06: Even the roadside food stalls these days adheres the standard of food safety hygienically at different parts in city in much lower price than AC, fan and tabled hotels.
But, surprisingly in a popular hotel at very junction of most populated Bhatu Basthi is serving stones adulterated Biryani.
According to two youth, 'yesterday in the afternoon they have visited famous hotel at Bhatu Basthi junction and ordered two plates Vegetable Biryani and butter paneer, which was served on the table in few minutes and they started having their lunch, and within few minutes one found a marble sized black stone in his plate, meanwhile another one accidentally found crushed under his teeth while having vegetable biryani in the hotel. "It was informed to the hotel management, but all are pretended as deaf ears in the hotel, and we are simply paid the bills and moved out", alleged the youths.
However, for making biryani from rice to the ingredients require, is all in sterilized and packed, then how such stones are entering into the biryani plates is the matter of business secret or a play with the citizens' health, may be.
On the other hand, the Island Tourism Festival is underway and the Port Blair city will witness huge crowd from different parts of A&N Islands to make rush in Port Blair to enjoy the ITF as well as will try to taste the varieties in city hotels. Hence, this is high time for concerned authorities to keep a tab on hoteliers to check the food safety standards for public interest.

STS to implement MoRTH directives; Decides to fit GPS Based Vehicle Tracking System & Panic Button in STS Buses, commercial vehicles


 Port Blair, Nov 7: The Ministry of Road Transport & Highways has mandated fitment of GPS based vehicles tracking system in all commercial vehicles. The Transport Department has already started action for empanelment of eligible firm capable of fitting GPS & providing after sales service in the UT. It has been decided to implement the directives in two phases to provide a transition period to the commercial vehicle owners.
In first phase, all the public transport buses operated by Transport Department shall be covered and tender has been floated by the Department. In the second phase all other commercial vehicles shall be required to comply with the directives of MoRTH as referred above.

15 Kgs of Ganja seized under NDPS Act at Mayabunder




Mayabunder, Oct 30: In probably one of the biggest catches of recent times, the North & Middle Andaman district police seized around 15 kg of ganja on 25th October.
There were inputs that some of the shipments being carried in the containers of passenger ships are carrying the contraband substance. Based on that a police team was deployed on jetty since the last passenger ship Swaraj Dweep arrived at Mayabunder and each and every package was being checked as and when the containers opened. This led to a huge success on Friday when, the police team headed by Shri Hukma Ram (SDPO Diglipur) and consisting of SI Somen Halder, SI Anbeshwaran and other police station staff came across a person who was trying to avoid the checking of packages and his name is Mr. Ashok  Biswas (54) yrs. Resident of Subashgram, Diglipur. When he was made to open the packages, it was found that there was around 15 kg of ganja in that. Legal proceedings have been started in matter and further investigation has been taken up.
SP North & Middle Andaman Shri Vichitra Veer, IPS said that any information that such a huge recovery just before Diwali would demoralise the anti-social elements. He further said that any information received from the public with regards to transportation of ganja is duly verified and such information leading to recovery is a good sign. It would lead to better trust between police and public, a press release said.

Birth anniv. of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel ; Chief Secretary flags off ‘Run for Unity’



Port Blair, Oct. 31: A large number of people, including students, youth and general public enthusiastically participated in the ‘Run for Unity’, organized by the A&N Administration this morning, to commemorate the birth anniversary of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, which was also observed as ‘National Unity Day’. The Chief Secretary (I/C), A&N Administration, Shri Vikram Dev Dutt flagged off the ‘Run for Unity’ from the historic Netaji Stadium. He also administered the ‘Rashtriya Ekta Pledge’ to the gathering on the occasion. The Member of Parliament, Shri Kuldeep Rai Sharma, the Chairperson, PBMC, Shri NK Udhaya Kumar and Senior Officers of the A&N Administration were also present on the occasion.
Over 600 participants, including school students, CISF Jawans, Youth and volunteers from NSS and NYK, International Medalists, Ms Regina Kiro and Sandhya Kispota participated in the ‘Run for Unity’. ‘National Unity Day’ is observed on October 31st since 2014. People from all walks of life also participated in the ‘Run for Unity’ organized to mark the occasion.
The ‘Run for Unity’ began from Netaji Stadium and passed through the Clock Tower, Model Senior Secondary School, Bengali Club, PBMC Office, Gandhi Statue, Aberdeen Bazaar, Clock Tower and culminated at the starting point at Netaji Stadium, where the Assistant Director Sports, Shri V. Ranjith Kumar welcomed the runners.