April, 2016


In its thirty fifth flight (PSLV-C33), ISRO’s Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle successfully launched the 1425 kg IRNSS-1G, the seventh satellite in the Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS) today afternoon (April 28, 2016) from Satish Dhawan Space Centre SHAR, Sriharikota. This is the thirty fourth consecutively successful mission of PSLV and the thirteenth in its ‘XL’ configuration.
Honourable Prime Minister of India, Mr. Narendra Modi, heartily thanked and congratulated all the ISRO scientists and team ISRO for completing IRNSS constellation and dedicated IRNSS to the nation as ‘NavIC’ (Navigation Indian Constellation). He appreciated India’s space community for making the country proud through such achievements which have helped in improving the life of common man.
After separation, the solar panels of IRNSS-1G were deployed automatically. ISRO’s Master Control Facility (MCF) at Hassan, Karnataka took over the control of the satellite. In the coming days, four orbit manoeuvres will be conducted from MCF to position the satellite in the Geostationary Orbit at 129.5 deg East longitude.
IRNSS-1G is the seventh of the seven satellites constituting the space segment of the Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System. IRNSS-1A, 1B, 1C, ID, IE and 1F, the first six satellites of the constellation, were successfully launched by PSLV on July 02, 2013, April 04, 2014, October 16, 2014, March 28, 2015, January 20, 2016 and March 10, 2016 respectively. All the six satellites are functioning satisfactorily from their designated orbital positions.
IRNSS is an independent regional navigation satellite system designed to provide position information in the Indian region and 1500 km around the Indian mainland. IRNSS provides two types of services, namely, Standard Positioning Services (SPS) – provided to all users and Restricted Services (RS) – provided to authorised users.
A number of ground facilities responsible for satellite ranging and monitoring, generation and transmission of navigation parameters, etc., have been established in eighteen locations across the country. Today’s successful launch of IRNSS-1G, the seventh and final member of IRNSS constellation, signifies the completion of the IRNSS constellation.


India signed the historic Paris Climate Agreement on April 22, 2016 along with 175 other nations at the United Nations Headquarters in New York, marking a significant step to combat global warming. The Paris Climate Agreement was formulated within the framework of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). The Union government had earlier declared its Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs) towards realising the ultimate objective of UNFCC. The plan is for reduction in the emissions intensity of its GDP by 33-35 percent from 2005 level, by 2030 and to create an additional carbon sink of 2.5-3.0 billion tonnes of CO2 equivalent through additional forest and tree cover by 2030. In order to meet this ambitious target, solar energy is expected to play a crucial role in our country. India’s emission reduction targets are in line with the National Solar Mission target of 100 GW Solar Energy by 2022. The Union Government is speedily moving towards achieving this target by creating a supportive and conductive environment in terms of technology, policy and financial aspects.
International Solar Alliance : The Solar energy’s potential in India is immense. The Union Government has been able to recognise and utilise this potential through supportive policies and initiatives. In this direction, India launched International Solar Alliance of over 120 countries with the French President, Mr. Francois Hollande, at the Paris COP21 Climate Summit on Nov. 30, 2015. It aims to accelerate the deployment of Solar Energy for universal energy access and energy security for the future. The collective aim is to undertake initiatives to reduce the cost of technology and finance for solar projects and to identify financial instruments to mobilise $1,000 billion to promote affordable energy. It will function from the National Institute of Solar Energy in Gurugram, India. The Indian initiative called the International Agency for Solar Technologics and Applications (IASTA), aims to spread cheap solar technology across the globe with pooled policy knowledge.
Solar Energy Schemes by the Govt : In order to realise the solar energy goals, the Government has launched several schemes from time to time such as the Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission (JNNSM), Solar City Programme, Scheme for Development of Solar Parks and Ultra Mega Solar Parks, Solar Energy Pumping System among others. Apart from this, Integrated Power Development Scheme (IPDS) was launched by the Government in Varanasi in Sept. 18, 2015. The aim of the scheme was to extend financial assistance against capital expenditure to all State power departments and both State and Private Distribution Companies (DISCOMS) to ensure 24×7 power supply to all. A budgetary support of Rs. 45,800 crore has been provided to the IPDS for its entire implementation period.
Job Creation and Skill India in Solar Energy : Given the population growth rate, India needs to create one crore jobs every year. Analysis carried out by Council of Energy, Environment and Water (CEEW) and the Natural Resources Defence Council (NRDC) estimates that more than ten lakh full-time jobs would be created by the solar deployment industry alone, between now and 2022. Analysing the jobs created in the Solar Photo Voltaic (PV) sector, along with the related skills required in every phase of a solar project to reach the targeted 100 GW of Solar Energy by 2022 will need nearly 1,80,000 skilled plant design engineers and approximately 5,70,000 semi-skilled technicians for construction, most of whom will be needed to achieve the targeted 40 GW rooftop solar capacity addition. As many as 75,000 highly skilled workers will be needed within six years to carry out annual and ongoing performance data monitoring of Solar Projects.
In recognition of the need for skill Development, National Institute of Solar Energy (NISE) organises ‘Suryamitra Skill Development Programme’, which aims to train 50,000 youths over the next three years for installation, operation and maintenance of solar projects. The National Certification Programme for Rooftop Solar Photovoltaic Installer (NCPRSPI) is aimed at developing skilled and qualified manpower to install rooftop Photovoltaic systems throughout the country.
Solar Energy for Rural Development : Currently, lakhs of Indian farmers are waiting for agricultural electricity connections, while 90 lakh diesel pumps are being used for irrigation. Diesel water pumps are both expensive and hazardous to the environment. Solar water pumps could provide cost-effective and reliable irrigation servie, even in remote rural areas. The Central and State Governments are providing several incentives to promote the adoption of solar pumps. Capital subsidy on solar pumps ranges from 30% to 86% of the upfront cost depending on the contribution of the State governments. The Central Government is also promoting several solar energy applications such as solar flood dryers, solar home-lighting systems, solar lanterns, etc. which could stimulate the rural economy by providing power for various economic activities, in addition to fulfilling the basic energy needs and improving the quality of life in rural homes. The rooftop solar systems could also provide access to reliable electricity in Primary Health Centres and Primary schools in the rural areas.
Transition to an Energy Future : The time for transition to an energy future that has a significant component of solar energy has come. The political support extended to this sector is unprecedented. Access to high quality and relevant training programmes is crucial, along with the support to the domestic solar manufacturing market. Leveraging the synergies between the different government programmes for achieving India’s ambitious renewable energy target could play an important role in furthering the economic development and livelihood security in India.

Sports of the Year Award

World No. 1 tennis player Novak Djokovic of Serbia wins Laureus Sportsman of the Year Award, whereas US tennis player Serena Williams wins the Sportswomen of the Year Award in Berlin, Germany.

First Indian women gymnastic to qualify for Olympics

Dipa Karmakar becomes the first Indian women gymnastic to qualify for Olympics and books a berth for Rio Games by scoring 52.698 points in the Olympic qualifying event.

CEO Releases Handbook on 2016 Election

Chief Electoral Officer, Rajesh Lakhoni, released a handbook in Tamil, which gives a glimpse of the history of the election process n the country including voter awareness programmes, the evolution of the model code, the history of the legislature in the State and the delimitation of constitutencies and the constitutency-wise result of 2011 Assembly elections.

Nagapattinam Fishing for Port of Good Hope

If the reign of the Chola dynasty was the watershed moment in Tamil Nadu history, the foundation of their monumental naval glory, which culminated in the subjugation of parts of South East Asia, was provided by Nagapattinam Port. From being a key port city in ancient India, the then gateway for flourishing trade has now been reduced to just a market where small fishermen auction their paltry catch. “Lying between two major ports – Chennai and Thoothukudi – Nagapattinam is an ideal spot to develop a third port. If develop a third port. If developed, the port here would promote industrial growth and generate employment. Passenger vessels can also be operated from here to Sri Lanka and South East Asia, which could provide a fillip to the tourism industry,” feels N. Chandrasekaran, an exporter from Nagapattinam.

Param Kanchenjunga

Supercomputer ‘Param Kanchenjunga’, jointly established by C-DAC Pune and NIT-Sikkim, is formally unveiled by Sikkim Governor Mr. Shrinivas Pail at NIT-Sikkim campus in South Sikkim.

Chinese Grand Prix Formula-1

German Formula 1 Mercedes driver Nico Rosberg wins 2016 Formula 1 Pirelli Chinese Grand Prix in Shanghai International Circuit, defeating his compatriot Sebastian Vettel of Ferrari.

Singapore Open Badminton Tournament

Men’s singles : Sony Dwi Kuncoro of Indonesia wins men’s singles title of Singapore Open Badminton Tournament, defeating Son Wan Ho of Korea 21-16, 13-21, 21-14.
Women’s singles : Women’s singles title of Singapore Open Badminton Tourna-ment is won by Thailand’s Ratchanok Intanon, defeating Sun Yu of China 18-21, 21-11, 21-14.

2016 Monte Carlo Masters Title

Spain’s Rafael Nadal defeats Frenchman Gael Monfils 7-5, 5-7, 6-0 to grab the 2016 Monte Carlo Masters title, in 2 hours 46 minutes.