Baroda News

Gujarat to reserve 10% seats in PG courses for in-service doctors

A 10% reservation in postgraduate medical courses has been announced by Gujarat’s health department for in-service doctors working at district and taluka health centres.

  • The rules list 10 branches in which reservations will be implemented: paediatrics, TB and chest, obstetrics and gynaecology, preventive and social medicine, orthopaedics, general surgery and medicine.
  • Anaesthetics, radiology and pathology are not on the list.
  • The eligibility conditions are that the in-service doctors have to be Class 2 officers, should have been appointed by the Gujarat Public Service Commission, and have completed three years of service.
  • The age limit to avail of this reservation has been set at 45 years.
  • If an in-service doctor leaves the course midway, according to the government's bond policy, they will have to pay 25% of their Rs. 40 lakh bond, i.e. Rs 10 lakh.
  • The candidate doctors must have cleared NEET-PG.
  • This reservation will be implemented in the 2022-23 admission procedure.
  • With SC, ST and OBC quotas accounting for 49%, 10% EWS quota, 5% for persons with disabilities and 10% reservation for in-service doctors, a total of 74% of seats will be reserved.

Central Board of Direct Taxes extends deadlines

The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) has extended the deadline of filing tax audit reports for income tax returns to February 15 for the assessment year 2021-22.  A tweet by the department said: ‘On consideration of difficulties reported by taxpayers/stakeholders due to Covid & in e-filing of Audit reports for AY 2021-22 under the I-T Act, 1961, CBDT further extends due dates for filing of Audit reports & ITRs for AY 21-22.’ The due date for furnishing report of audit is extended to February 15. It also applies to the specified domestic transactions under Section 92E. For the individual taxpayers, the return of income for assessment year (AY) 2021-22 which was October 31 – and for some sections November 30 – is extended to March 15. (12-01-2022)

Gujarat government will recruit 3,300 primary school teachers

The Gujarat government is preparing to recruit nearly 3,300 teachers (vidya sahayaks) for state-run primary schools. 1,300 teachers will be recruited for Classes I to V, and 2,000 teachers for Classes VI to VIII. Those who have cleared the eligibility test in the past will be considered for recruitment as an extension has already been given in this regard. (12-01-2022)

Government launches drive to save birds injured during kite festival

The government has launched a drive to rescue and treat birds injured because of the kite festival. Rescue and treatment centres, medical practitioners and over 6,000 volunteers will help in rescue and treatment of birds.

  • The drive will continue until January 20.
  • State forest department control rooms will function from 7 am to 6 pm in all talukas of the district and information about rescue centres will be available through WhatsApp and a website.
  • People can get information on bird rescue and treatment facilities by sending the text “Karuna” to the number 93200 02000 or by logging on to the website
  • In addition, 1962 – the helpline number of the state animal husbandry department – will also be available for citizens to report injuries to birds caused by kites.

R.B. Barad is the new Vadodara district collector

The Gujarat government has promoted and transferred several IAS officers in the state, including the Vadodara district collector.

  • Vadodara district collector R.B. Barad was promoted and transferred to the Forest and Environment Department.
  • A.B. Gor, CEO of the Ahmedabad Urban Development Authority (AUDA), has been appointed as the new Vadodara district collector.
  • D.P. Desai, who was the Registrar of Cooperatives, will be the new CEO of AUDA.
  • Alok Kumar Pandey, Director of Employment and Training, was also promoted and appointed as the new MD of TCGL.

Ahmedabad police notification on kite flying

The Ahmedabad city police has issued a notification regarding the kite festival which may be useful for all people:

  • It has prohibited the production, sale, storage and use of kite strings made of nylon, synthetic, glass-coated or non-biodegradable material.
  • The restriction will be in place till January 15 night.
  • Flying kites that have inflammatory slogans written on them and use of loudspeakers to offend common people’s feelings have been banned.
  • Production, sale and use of sky lanterns, flying of kites over rooftops, terraces and public places and acts of chasing cut kites with bamboo shoots, wooden sticks or iron rods in public places are also banned.
  • Anyone found violating the notification will be booked under Indian Penal Code section 188 for disobedience to order given by a public servant and other relevant sections.

Statewide sample survey to find buildings without BU permission

Thanks to a high court directive, a statewide sample survey of properties without Building Use (BU) permission across municipal corporations and nagarpalikas is being undertaken. About 8,300 buildings, including residential properties, will be part of the sample survey. The survey will help to frame a legal provision to legitimize such buildings even after these buildings could not be legalized under the impact fee law. There is also the issue of implementation of the provisions of the central law of the Clinical Establishments (Registration and Regulation) Act, 2010, which is yet to be implemented in the state and requires that hospitals, nursing homes and clinics operate from legal and fire-safe premises. Fire safety and structural safety are of primary concerns, but one of the biggest impediments is the legal status of these buildings. (11-01-2022)

Gujarat high court unhappy with Pollution Control Board

The Gujarat high court strongly rebuked the Gujarat Pollution Control Board (GPCB) for granting permission to a company to discharge its treated trade effluent in the sewer. It asked for immediate suspension of the officer who gave his consent to the industrial unit. The court asked who had signed GBCP’s consent report for the company, and upon being informed that a senior environment engineer did it, the judges said, “Then he is in contempt (of court). He does not deserve to remain in office. He should be suspended with immediate effect. Are we fools that we have invested so many hours to resolve the problem and finally to read this consent order? Such things have shaken our confidence.” The high court has ordered the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) and the GPCB to sever all drainage connections of industrial units found discharging their effluents into sewerage networks. (10-01-2022)

Helpline for wildlife conservation launched by forest department

The Gujarat state forest department wants to encourage public participation in wildlife conservation and facilitate the rescue of wild animals and action against wildlife-related crimes. Towards this end it has launched a state-wide helpline number (+91 83200 02000).

  • Citizens can give a missed call or send an SMS or a WhatsApp message to report wildlife-related crimes or raise a rescue alert.
  • They can also receive links to apply for cattle-death compensation through this number.
  • This is an unmanned auto reply number.
  • In response, the helpline provides links to a page which has phone numbers of all concerned forest officials like RFO or DCF and wildlife wardens based in all 33 districts.
This helpline is only meant for issues related to wild animals and not for pets or stray animals. The department already has Karuna Animal Helpline 1962 for rescue of birds and stray animals.
  • Karuna Animal Helpline has been upgraded keeping in mind the upcoming Uttarayan festival when thousands of birds are at risk of getting injured or killed because of the sharp kite strings.
  • Earlier, people would call 1962 to receive information related to rescue services. Now, it has been made a GIS-enabled service where a person can get all the numbers of forest department-operated rescue centres, NGOs, veterinary doctors and volunteers located in nearby areas.
  • Citizens can visit Gujarat Forest Department’s official website to avail of this service.

Academic collaboration between MS University and Institute of Company Secretaries of India

A memorandum of understanding (MoU) has been signed by MS University (MSU) and the Institute of Company Secretaries of India (ICSI) for academic collaboration between the two. This will facilitate both the institutions for imparting knowledge and honing skills of students, academicians and professionals. The MoU will also help to develop skills by enhancing the curriculum at the university level. This academic collaboration will open new avenues for students of MSU. (09-01-2022)

Insensitive birthday party for a pet dog

Here is how the members of a family in Ahmedabad celebrated the birthday of their pet dog:

  • They hired a party plot for Rs. 7 lakh.
  • They roped in a singer, invited guests, played garbas.
  • The venue was decorated with flowers, balloons, photos and cutouts of the pet.
  • There was a huge stage for the orchestra and singers.
  • They cut a birthday cake.
  • All this was going on after curfew hours.
  • Eventually, they drew the attention of some uninvited guests – the police – and were very rightly arrested for violating Covid-19 norms.
  • They were booked for not wearing masks, violating social-distancing norms and holding a gathering without permission.
They were later released on bail. The law, as it stands, can perhaps do no more, but the society at large – and genuine animal lovers –  should consider a boycott of the following people who voluntarily attended and participated in the stupid and insensitive event:
  • All the invited guests.
  • The singer and performers.
  • The stage decorators.
  • The caterers.

Ahmedabad will follow Indore’s waste management model

Ahmedabad’s new municipal commissioner wants to strictly ensure that citizens segregate their domestic waste. He wants to implement the Indore model of solid waste management.

  • Indore’s clean streets are the outcome of the work done by 11,000 sanitation workers, 80% of whom are women who live within 1 km of their service areas so that they can manage their homes and work.
  • Adequate manpower, capacity building of staff, and the acquisition of equipment like segregated garbage tippers are the key.
  • Other essentials: efficient waste segregation of recyclable waste and strong administrative control.
  • Political will is also crucial.
  • Indore’s sanitation inspectors have the power to fine litterbugs between Rs 100 and Rs 1 lakh on the spot. The AMC plans to run similar
  • jeeps in the city.
It is said that in Indore people are more afraid of the yellow garbage patrol vehicles than police vehicles. (08-01-2022)

Manush Shah picked for Target Olympic Podium Scheme

Vadodara’s table tennis champion Manush Shah has been picked by the ministry of sports for its Target Olympic Podium Scheme (TOPS) to prepare him for the 2024 Olympics. The central government had started the TOPS in 2014 to support Indian sportspersons for the Olympics. He won the men’s title in table tennis in South America last year along with silver medal in men’s category at Pondicherry in December 2021. He also won a silver medal in open category at Indore last year. He is currently ranked 12th among the country’s senior men. Earlier, he was ranked No. 1 in the country and 6th in the world in the Under-18 category. (08-01-2022)

Gujarat High Court to start virtual proceedings from Jan 10

Due to the rising Covid-19 cases, the Gujarat High Court will move to virtual proceedings from January 10. All courts under the district judiciaries have been asked to move to virtual proceedings. Such a decision was taken for the safety of all stakeholders: lawyers, litigants, visitors to court premises and court staff. Virtual court proceedings will be held over the Zoom platform and the livestream of the HC proceedings will continue. For district judiciary courts, judicial custody and police remand of an accused shall not be granted through video conferencing although extension of judicial custody can be extended through video conferencing. No advocates or parties-in-person will be permitted to be present in court halls during a virtual hearing. After going virtual in March 2020, the HC had resumed physical proceedings on August 17, 2021. (08-01-2022)

New curfew timings announced for 10 cities in Gujarat

New measures have been announced in Gujarat to curb the spread of Covid-19:

  • The night curfew in Ahmedabad, Anand, Bhavnagar, Gandhinagar, Jamnagar, Junagadh, Nadiad, Rajkot, Surat and Vadodara will be in force from 10 pm to 6 am.
  • For open spaces, the government announced a ceiling of 400 attendees for political and social events, weddings etc. In case of a closed venue, not more than 50 per cent of the total capacity will be allowed. For funerals, a maximum of 100 mourners will be allowed to gather.
  • Establishments such as shops, spas, shopping complexes, malls, hotels and restaurants can function till 10 pm, but at a maximum capacity of 75 per cent. This limit is also applicable for government and non-government AC buses.
  • A cap of 50 per cent has been announced for cinema halls, gyms, swimming pools, libraries etc.
  • The government has also ordered closure of all educational institutes till January 31.

Student Startup and Innovation Policy 2.0 launched

The first phase of the SSIP had started in 2017 and had concluded in 2021. The new phase will run till 2027.

  • The first phase covered 6,276 student innovations and provided Rs 100 crore aid to 186 educational institutes associated with 51 universities.
  • The policy reaches school level and includes those who dropped out of school or college, and alumni of up to 35 years of age.
  • The focus will be on all streams, not just tech-based innovations.
  • Among the features: a grant of up to Rs. 5 crore to start innovation and acceleration activities and a grant of up to Rs. 2 crore to institutes under the same head.
  • Other features are support for filing IPR and providing seed grants and financial support for organizing boot camps and seminars.

Vadodara’s Yastika Bhatia picked for ODI World Cup

Vadodara’s 21-year-old Yastika Bhatia has been picked for the Indian women’s team for the ICC One-day International (ODI) World Cup 2022. She has also been selected for the five-match ODI series in New Zealand. A left-handed batter and wicket-keeper, she captained the Baroda team in the National U-23 Women’s T20 Cricket Tournament in 2019. She was also a part of the India ‘A’ team that won the ACC (Asian Cricket Council) Women’s Emerging Asia Cup. She is pursuing her BA. (07-01-2022)

MS University now has a garden specially designed for the visually challenged

The MS University (MSU) campus now offers Gujarat's first garden specially designed for the visually challenged. The diversity of plants allows people to touch, smell and even taste them. MSU has incorporated this special sensory garden by modifying its century-old botanical garden. Braille script has been installed on standees near each of the 22 plant species. They can read the description of each plant (common name, scientific name and use) in Braille – in Gujarati and English. After reading it, they simply bend to get the feel and texture of the plant, enjoy its taste and rub it to smell its fragrance. All the plants have aroma and are edible as well. (06-01-2022)

Gujarat government puts Vibrant Gujarat Summit on hold

The Gujarat government has postponed the Vibrant Gujarat global investor summit which was to be inaugurated on January 10. This was done due to the prevailing Covid situation in Gujarat. No rescheduled dates have been announced. The chief minister's statement said that heads of different countries, high-level delegations and companies from across the country had expressed interest and registered to participate in the summit. More than 17,000 individuals and 7,000 companies had registered for the summit. (06-01-2022)

MOU signed to manufacture battery-grade lithium

An MoU has been signed by the Gujarat government with Manikaran Lithium Pvt Ltd to set up the first lithium refinery to manufacture battery-grade lithium. The likely investment is USD 300 million. It will be at Sanand or Dholera, and lithium ore will be imported from countries like Australia. Among the other MoUs/agreements:

  • A green renewable hydrogen facility in Ahmedabad.
  • A flying training facility at Amreli airport.
  • A facility in Ahmedabad to manufacture bullet proof jackets, pistols and tanks.
  • The state government has signed 135 MoUs ahead of the Vibrant Gujarat summit.

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