Ministry of Human Resource Development Launches All India Survey on Higher Education (AISHE) 2014-15


The Secretary, Higher Education, Ministry of Human Resource Development, Shri Satya Narayan Mohanty launched the All India Survey on Higher Education (AISHE) 2014-15 in New Delhi today. The survey, undertaken as an annual, web-based, pan-India exercise on the status of Higher Education since 2010-11, covers all the Higher Educational Institutions in the country.

So far, the Ministry has released the final reports of AISHE 2011-12 and provisional reports of AISHE 12-13, which are in the public domain. While the Survey exercise is in its fourth consecutive year now, the AISHE 2013-14, launched on June 17, 2014, is also underway. With the launch of AISHE 2014-15 in October, the time lag in dissemination of higher education statistics has been eliminated.

The annual survey collects data on several parameters like teachers, student enrolment, programmes, examination results, education finance, infrastructure, etc. Such parameters and the data collected under these come in handy for making informed policy decisions and conducting research in education development.

The Survey is building a sound database, which is getting updated annually as per information submitted by the Institutions. The data is uploaded on the AISHE portal (

TRAI seeks more information on availability of 3G spectrum


Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has sought more information on the availability of 3G spectrum while proposing that vacant 3G slots be put up for upcoming auction along with the spectrum in 900 Megahertz (MHz) and 1,800 MHz bands.
In a letter to the Department, the regulator said, it will not be in a position to go ahead with the consultation process in the absence of full information with regard to total availability of the spectrum in the 2,100 MHz 3G band and requested to indicate the decision regarding this at the earliest.

Last week, the Department of Telecom had sought TRAI’s recommendations on the reserve price for 2,100 MHz, 2,300 MHz and 2,500 MHz bands for all the service areas.

The DoT has informed TRAI that at present no vacant spectrum is available with it in 2,100 MHz band and discussions with Defence are underway for release of one block of 5 MHz of spectrum.

Malala Yousafzai conferred 2014 Liberty Medal



Pakistani teenager and Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai has been conferred the 2014 Liberty Medal for her continued demonstration of courage and resilience in the face of adversity and for serving as a powerful voice for those who have been denied their basic human rights and liberties. She is the youngest recipient of the American award, which was established in 1988 to commemorate the 200 years of the US Constitution.

The annual Liberty Medal, is given to honour men and women of courage and conviction who strive to secure the blessings of liberty to people around the globe. Malala has pledged to donate the award money of 100,000 US Dollars towards education in Pakistan. Malala, 17, called for spending money on books, not guns in her speech.

Tahir-ul Qadri announces to end anti-govt protest


Pakistan Awami Tehreek Chief Tahir-ul Qadri has announced to end his anti-government protest in Islamabad. The announcement ends over two months of protest sit-in in the federal capital which set off a political crisis in the country.

Announcing the decision, Qadri said that protests will now be held all over the country, which he termed as the next stage of the revolution. He announced a schedule for sit-ins that will be held in cities including Karachi, Abbottabad and Sialkot.

The cleric said, the sit-in has achieved its purpose, awakened the nation and played its role in the path of revolution. Soon after Qadri’s announcement, his supporters started packing up their camps and hugging one another goodbye.

Qadri and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf Chief Imran Khan launched their protests on the 14th of August in a bid to oust Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and had vowed to remain in Islamabad till the removal of government led by him. There have been reports of a rift between Qadri and Imran over the issue of ending the sit-in as most of their supporters had gone back. Khan is still protesting.

Qadri was reportedly holding back-channel talks with the government and speculation was rife that he might have reached some understanding with the government.

Fleet of Sukhoi-30 grounded



Oct 22,

India has grounded its entire fleet of Sukhoi-30 following a recent crash near Pune. Each aircraft is undergoing a technical check. IAF spokesperson said the aircraft would be back in the air only after a thorough check.

The grounded fleet represents almost a third of the country’s fighter fleet. Last week, a Sukhoi-30 MKI had crashed in a field near Pune. Preliminary findings had suggested a technical problem and not the human error.

This was the fifth accident involving a SU 30 MKI since 2009 and the fleet has at least been grounded twice earlier.

India wants to resolve all issues with Pak : NSA


India wants to resolve all issues with Pak : NSA

Asserting that there are no problems which cannot be resolved, India on Tuesday said it would like to address all its issues with Pakistan through talks while having an effective deterrence to deal with terrorism emanating from there.

National Security Advisor Ajit Doval also emphasised that India wants to have friendly relations with an economically-growing China without compromising on territorial sovereignity.

“We would like to resolve our problems through negotiations, through talks. I don’t think of any problem that cannot be resolved through negotiations,” he said, against the backdrop of recent escalation in ceasefire violation by Pakistan.

“But on the other hand, India would like to have an effective deterrence to deal with terrorism,” Doval said.

Delivering an address on “The Munich Security Conference” (MSC) here, he emphasised the policy of having friendly relations with all neighbours and said India’s economic progress could bring the regional countries together.

“I think developing better relations with neighbourhood is important. India’s economic development could bind together the region which could see a vested interest that India’s growth will bring more opportunities and they should not feel undermined,” he said.

Turning to China whose troops have been indulging in incursions across the Line of Actual Control (LAC), he said India considers it as “a very important neighbour” with with “we have had good relations for centuries”.

Observing that there had been “some bad experience in 1962 (when China waged war)”, the NSA said.

He added “But we find space for economic cooperation and commerce. I would like to develop our relations to such an extent till the time our territorial and integral sovereignty that we would not able to compromise on it. We should sit together and resolve our boundary dispute amicably.”

Talking about the problem of terrorism, the NSA pushed for early fructification of the long-pending UN Comprehensive Covention on International Terrorism (CCIT), which is being stalled by countries like Pakistan.

“On international front, nothing has happened except conferences. UN resolution is pending. We don’t have UN Convention of Terrorism,” he said.

Doval added “People could not define terrorism and Pakistan said ‘freedom fighers’ should not be treated as terrorists.”

Questioning why there cannot be a UN convention on terrorism, he said such a measure would make states more responsible as to what actions a state has to take and how there can be a collective response to it.

“Can we think of extradition laws that that can help us in the process. It is fast-moving pattern and action should be taken in 24 to 48 hours. Otherwise it will not serve any purpose,” he said.

To press his point, he referred to the 9/11 attack in the US and said that 13 years on, a lot has happened on the domestic front in various countries to deal with terrorism and threats, but nothing has worked substantially at the international level.

Talking about emerging challenges, Doval pitched for joint effort by “strong democracies” to deal with the threats.

“There is no guarantee that countries with superior manpower, technology and networking, all the diplomatic and economic resources will be able to dissuade their adversaries,” he said, in comments which could be seen at directed at the US.

“We are moving into fourth generation warfare. The new channels of conflicts need quick responses. This is like a hit and run case. We are trying, we are succeeding and are failing, the same method, same tactic works, but most of the time it does not. It does not matter what happens to you. It is more important how the response has been,” he said.

SAARC nations should identify areas of challenges: PM


SAARC nations should identify areas of challenges: PM

South Asian countries should identify specific areas of common heritage, challenges and opportunities to foster region-wide cooperation, PM Narendra Modi said on Monday while committing India’s full support to the SAARC process.

He made the remarks in New Delhi on Monday while receiving Nepalese Foreign Minister Mahendra Bahadur Pandey who handed over to him a formal invite from Prime Minister Sushil Koirala for attending the upcoming SAARC Summit in Kathmandu on 26th to 27th November.

Modi, who had invited leaders of all SAARC countries for his swearing-in in May, reiterated that he attaches the highest level of priority to relations with SAARC countries and that he keenly looks forward to participating in his first Summit of the eight-member grouping.

He considered the SAARC as a vital instrument to add to the strength of each member nation and advance collective action for shared prosperity in the region, a PMO statement said on Monday.

In addition to promoting regional connectivity and integration, Modi said the SAARC countries should identify specific areas of common heritage, challenges and opportunities to foster region-wide cooperation, it said.

Committing India’s full support to the SAARC process, he also expressed strong belief that SAARC countries had much to learn from each other`s experiences and strengths.

Modi, who undertook his first visit as Prime Minister to Nepal in August, conveyed his gratitude to the people and the government of that country for the warmth and affection, as well as the extraordinary hospitality, which he received during the trip, the statement said.

He welcomed the progress in key areas of bilateral relations since the visit. He expressed hope for early completion of the drafting process of Nepal`s Constitution, the statement said.

  Khattar to be Haryana CM; oath taking on Sunday


Khattar to be Haryana CM; oath taking on Sunday

Haryana is all set for a BJP rule for the first time, with Chief Minister-designate Manohar Lal Khattar scheduled to be sworn in on Sunday.

Haryana Governor Kaptan Singh Solanki on Tuesday invited Khattar, who earlier in the day was elected leader of the Haryana BJP Legislative Party, to form the new government in the state.

The oath-taking ceremony will take place at the Tau Devi Lal Sports Stadium in Panchkula, near here, instead of the Haryana Raj Bhavan.

Khattar, 60, will be the first Bharatiya Janata Party chief minister of the state, which was formed Nov 1, 1966.

The former Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh (RSS) ‘pracharak’ was chosen by the newly elected BJP legislators as their leader at a meeting here.

The BJP, which created political history Sunday by winning 47 seats in the Haryana assembly polls, Tuesday staked its claim to form the next government in the state. The BJP, till now, used to play second fiddle to other regional parties in the state.

A letter from the party was submitted to the Haryana governor by Khattar after he was unanimously elected leader of the BJP legislative group.

Khattar was accompanied to Raj Bhavan by union minister Venkaiah Naidu, BJP national vice president Dinesh Sharma, state BJP president Ram Bilas Sharma, union minister Krishan Pal Gurjar and other BJP leaders.

“I have been chosen by the party legislators and the BJP leadership for this responsibility. I can assure you that we will work for the welfare of the people of Haryana,” Khattar said.

“My government will be transparent and there will be no discrimination with any area. We will take everyone together,” Khattar, sporting a light blue half-jacket, told media persons.

Despite being a first-time legislator with no administrative experience, the BJP chose the man from the Punjabi community to play its debutant leading role in the Jat-dominated politics of Haryana.

Khattar is seen as a “no-nonsense man” with organizational skills.

Naidu and Sharma attended the meeting of the legislators as observers sent by the BJP’s parliamentary board.

“The name of Khattar was proposed for chief minister by Haryana BJP president Ram Bilas Sharma and he (Khattar) was unanimously elected,” BJP central observer Dinesh Sharma told media.

The BJP got the majority on its own for the first time in Haryana in the results of the elections to the 90-member assembly declared Sunday.

Besides Khattar, other names earlier doing rounds for the chief minister’s post were those of state BJP president Ram Bilas Sharma, state BJP spokesperson Abhimanyu, senior legislator Anil Vij and BJP Kisan Cell leader O.P. Dhankar from among the recently elected legislators.

Other names being mentioned were of union ministers Sushma Swaraj, Rao Inderjit Singh and Krishan Pal. The name of Congressman-turned-BJP leader Birender Singh also figured in the speculation.

Birender Singh, Rao Inderjit Singh and Sushma Swaraj, all of whom are leaders from Haryana, were conspicuous by their absence as the BJP elected its first chief ministerial candidate.

This is the first time that the BJP will form its own government in the state. The party won only four assembly seats in the 2009 polls.

Results of the Haryana assembly elections were historic for the BJP as the party romped home with 47 legislators.

The Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) followed with 19 legislators, while the Congress, which was in power since March 2005, managed to get only 15 seats. Two seats went to the Haryana Janhit Congress (HJC), one each to Shiromani Akali Dal and Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP).


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