Global Goals

Press Freedom Day



September 16, 2019

India's Human Resource Development Minister launches Leadership for Academicians Programme (LEAP) - 2019

Academic Leaders

Photo: India’s Minister for Human Resource Development, Dr. Ramesh Pokhriyal’ Nishank’, at the launch of the Annual Refresher Programme In Teaching (ARPIT) and Leadership for Academicians (LEAP), in New Delhi on 16 September 2019.

Cornell Campus

Photo: A building in Cornell Campus. Cornell University (Ithaca, New York) is an Ivy League School. Image Credit: Tom Flemming.

New Delhi, 16 September 2019 — Union Human Resource Development Minister, Ramesh Pokhriyal’ Nishank’, launched Leadership for Academicians Programme (LEAP) - 2019 and Annual Refresher Programme In Teaching (ARPIT) - 2019 under Pandit Madan Mohan Malviya National Mission on Teachers and Teaching (PMMMNMTT) in New Delhi today.

The Minister said that teachers are the base of the education system. ARPIT is an excellent platform for teachers to learn about the latest developments in their field and develop their teaching qualities. He said that for better results, we need to increase the participation of teachers in this program.

He said that we have a vision and mission. We need better coordination, such as between the University Grants Commission (UGC) and All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE).

The Minister appreciated the LEAP program and said that we could develop administrative capabilities and leadership for organizations through this program. He further said that the leaders thus produced would have the responsibility of bringing institutions to the world ranking.

• Leadership for Academicians Programme (LEAP) -

The Leadership for Academicians Programme (LEAP) develops leaders for Higher Education Institutions.

LEAP is a three weeks leadership development program (2 weeks domestic and one-week foreign training) for second level academic functionaries in public-funded higher education institutions. Its main objective is to prepare the second tier academic heads that are potentially likely to assume leadership roles in the future. The Government is implementing LEAP through the following 15 institutions:

  1. Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur
  2. Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur
  3. Banaras Hindu University
  4. Jamia Milia Islamia
  5. Indian Institute of Technology, Roorkee
  6. Indian Institute of Science Education and Research (IISER), Kolkata
  7. University of Hyderabad
  8. NIT Trichy
  9. University of Delhi
  10. Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay
  11. Jawaharlal Nehru University
  12. Indian Institute of Technology, BHU
  13. TISS, Mumbai (CALEM)
  14. AMU (CALEM)

The mandatory eligibility conditions are a minimum of eight years of experience as Professor, three years of administrative experience, Impeccable Integrity, and high academic standing.

A maximum of Rs. 10 Lakhs per participant (including foreign training) is approved and each training institution signs MoUs with its international counterpart. LEAP training institution prepares information brochures with relevant information, such as the Structure of the Program, Curriculum, Resource Persons, Pedagogical aspects, Assessment and Evaluation, and Scheduled Dates for Indian & Foreign training. Each training module has a batch of 30 trainees. At the end of the training, the program evaluates the trainees on ten critical leadership attributes, namely, visioning & strategizing; communication skills; people management; conflict management & handling stress; decision making; teaching & learning research and innovation; financial planning and management; administrative skills; understanding students; and collaboration. In 2018-19, out of 15 LEAP approved Institutions, 12 have completed LEAP training with 280 participants.

In 2019-20, a centralized online selection process has been put in place and is now open for applying. The last date of registration is 25 September 2019, and the institution-wise selections would be available by 27 September 2019. The tentative LEAP (2019-20) Training Schedule is as follows:

LEAP Training Institution - Tentative Dates - Proposed Foreign University

  • IIT, Roorkee - 29 March to 4 April 2020 - University of Michigan
  • The University of Hyderabad - 28 October to 16 November 2019 - Cornell/Yale/Duke University, USA. Kyoto University, Japan
  • Jawaharlal Nehru Univ. - 2 to 13 December 2019 - NTU Singapore
  • AMU - February 2020 - Monash University
  • TISS - 20-31st Jan 2020 - University of Pennsylvania
  • NIEPA - 6 to 20 November 2020 - Oxford University, UK
  • Banaras Hindu University -16 to 21 March - University of Chicago
  • IIT Bombay - 24 February to 31 March 2020 - Cambridge /Oxford Univ/LSE/Kellogg School of Management
  • NIT Trichy - 2 to 7 March 2020 - NTU Singapore
  • IIT Kanpur - January/February 2020 - NTU Singapore
  • IISER Kolkata - July 2020 - Details awaited
  • IIT (BHU) - Dec 2019 to Jan 2020 - Details awaited
  • Jamia Milia Islamia - February/March 2020 - Oxford University UK/ University of Virginia, USA
  • IIT Kharagpur - 6 to10 Jan 2020 - University of Cambridge, UK
  • University of Delhi - February 2020 - Ross Business School, University of Michigan

• Annual Refresher Programme In Teaching (ARPIT) -

Ministry of Human Resource Development launched the Annual Refresher Programme In Teaching (ARPIT) in November 2018. ARPIT is a unique initiative comprising the online professional development of 1.5 million higher education faculty using the MOOCs platform SWAYAM.

The ARPIT program first identifies the discipline-specific National Resource Centers (NRCs). These NRCs are then tasked to prepare online training material with a focus on the latest developments in the discipline, new & emerging trends, pedagogical improvements, and methodologies for transacting revised curriculum.

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September 12, 2019

Oxford tops Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2020

Oxford University

Photo: The University of Oxford. Sheldonian Theatre and Bodleian Library from beneath Balliol’s Great Beech. Image Credit: Piers Nye.

London, 11 September 2019 — Times Higher Education today announced its World University Rankings 2020. The rankings include 1,400 universities across 92 countries, standing as the largest and most diverse university rankings ever to date.

The University of Oxford tops the rankings. It is in the first place. The California Institute of Technology is second, while the University of Cambridge is in the third place.

Stanford, Yale, Harvard, UC Berkeley, and Imperial College London all appear in the top fifteen.

Times Higher Education ranks universities on 13 carefully calibrated performance indicators that measure an institution’s performance across teaching, research, knowledge transfer, and international outlook.

Mainland China now provides both of Asia’s top two universities, with Tsinghua and Peking universities finishing at 23rd and 24th place respectively. The country’s universities have continued to expand their influence and presence on the world stage.

Ha Wei, Associate Dean, Graduate School of Education, Peking University, says that China’s excellence initiatives have “poured billions of US dollars” into select groups of universities.” “Talent attraction programs” have also helped the institutions improve, he said.

The latest Double World-Class project, launched in 2015, includes a “monitoring and evaluation system to make it more results-oriented,” Ha Wei added. It means that “those who are deemed less efficient in using the resources will get removed from the list of beneficiaries.”

“I believe the upward trend for Chinese universities will continue,” he said.

• Times Higher Education World University Rankings — Top 30

  1. University of Oxford, United Kingdom
  2. California Institute of Technology, United States
  3. University of Cambridge, United Kingdom
  4. Stanford University, United States
  5. Massachusetts Institute of Technology, United States
  6. Princeton University, United States
  7. Harvard University, United States
  8. Yale University, United States
  9. University of Chicago, United States
  10. Imperial College London, United Kingdom
  11. University of Pennsylvania, United States
  12. Johns Hopkins University, United States
  13. University of California, Berkeley, United States
  14. ETH Zurich, Switzerland
  15. UCL, United Kingdom
  16. Columbia University, United States
  17. University of California, Los Angeles, United States
  18. University of Toronto, Canada
  19. Cornell University, United States
  20. Duke University, United States
  21. University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, United States
  22. Northwestern University, United States
  23. Tsinghua University, China
  24. Peking University, China
  25. National University of Singapore, Singapore
  26. University of Washington, United States
  27. Carnegie Mellon University, United States
  28. London School of Economics and Political Science, United Kingdom
  29. New York University, United States
  30. University of Edinburgh, United Kingdom

Source: Times Higher Education

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September 10, 2019

A View of the United Nations Headquarters on 09 September 2019

United Nations, New York


Photo: A view of United Nations Headquarters and parts of Manhattan as seen from Queens. 09 September 2019. United Nations, New York. UN Photo/Evan Schneider.

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September 7, 2019

UNESCO Creative Cities Annual Conference: Santos, Brazil, will host it in 2020; Istanbul, Turkey, will host it in 2021.

UNESCO Creative Cities Network, Istanbul

Photo: Istanbul, Turkey. Image Credit: Juan Antonio Segal. The city of Istanbul in Turkey is a UNESCO Creative City of Design.

Paris, France, 07 September 2019 — Istanbul has been selected as the Host City of the XV UNESCO Creative Cities Network’s Annual Conference in 2021 following an online vote by the 180 members of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network (UCCN) present in 72 countries.

Istanbul is a major city in Turkey that straddles Europe and Asia across the Bosphorus Strait. Istanbul’s Old City reflects the cultural influences of the many empires that once ruled here.

“Future Proof Cities” will be the theme of the 2021 conference. This theme refers to the concept of urban future-proofing. It involves monitoring developments in all areas of urban life to ensure an equilibrium between the environment, technology, economic activity, and human needs and aspirations.

The UCCN Annual Conferences bring together mayors, municipal decision-makers, and other stakeholders. They examine ways to place people at the center of sustainable urban development from the economic, environmental, social, and cultural perspectives. The UCCN conferences echo the overarching objective of the United Nations’ 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development - Leaving no one behind.

Fabriano, Italy, hosted this year’s conference.

Santos, Brazil

Photo: Santos, Brazil. Image Credit: Ricardo ATB. The city of Santos in Brazil is a UNESCO Creative City of Film.

The 2020 event will take place in the city of Santos in Brazil, a UNESCO Creative City of Film since 2015. Santos will be the first city of the Latin America and Caribbean Region to host the UCCN Annual Conference and the first Creative City of Film to do so. Under the theme “Creativity, Path to Equality,” the 2020 Annual Conference will demonstrate the power of creativity and culture in advancing sustainable development and reducing social and economic inequalities.

Krakow and Katowice, Poland hosted the Annual Conference in 2018, after Enghien-les-Bains, France (2017), and Östersund, Sweden (2016).

UNESCO established the Creative Cities Programme and Network to promote international cooperation between cities that are committed to investing in culture and creativity to stimulate and drive sustainable development. The Network covers seven creative fields: Crafts and Folk Art, Design, Film, Gastronomy, Literature, Media Arts and Music.

Cities in the Network anchor culture and creativity in their development frameworks and policies to advance objectives such as social cohesion, employment, entrepreneurship, and gender balance among others for the achievement of the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals. The annual conferences are a unique opportunity for cities to review their results, exchange best practices and ideas, and identify new trends. The cities discuss challenges and opportunities and build connections and partnerships.

Home to over half of the world’s population, the cities play a crucial role in developing and implementing strategies that address the development challenges of the 21st century. In this context, the UNESCO Creative Cities Programme and its Annual Conference have an ever more critical role to play in addressing the contemporary challenges and opportunities facing cities and human settlements.

Source: UNESCO, Paris.

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September 4, 2019

UN Secretary-General Appoints Melissa Fleming of United States Under-Secretary-General for Global Communications

United Nations, New York

Photo: UN Secretary-General António Guterres swears in Melissa Fleming, Under-Secretary-General for Global Communications. 04 September 2019. United Nations, New York. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe.

New York, NY — United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres has appointed Melissa Fleming of the United States as the next Under-Secretary-General for Global Communications.

She succeeds Alison Smale of the United Kingdom.

Ms. Fleming brings to the position more than 25 years of strategic vision, innovative management, and communications expertise. She worked in the UN in the fields of humanitarian action, conflict prevention, peacebuilding, and free media.

Since 2009, Ms. Fleming has been Head of Global Communications and Spokesperson in the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Geneva. While there, she led global media outreach campaigns, social media engagement, and a multimedia news service serving audiences ranging from media, public, donors, Governments and refugees themselves.

Ms. Fleming joined UNHCR from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), where she served for eight years as Spokesperson and Head of Media and Outreach. Before IAEA, she headed the Press and Public Information team at the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE). Earlier still, she served as Public Affairs Specialist at Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty in Munich, Germany.

Having begun her career as a journalist, Ms. Fleming held the position of Senior Advisor and Spokesperson on the transition team of the current Secretary-General from 2016 to 2017.

She holds a Master of Science in journalism from the College of Communication, Boston University, and a Bachelor of Arts in German studies from Oberlin College, Ohio, United States.

Source: United Nations, New York

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September 3, 2019

High Court Censures Panjab University Vice-Chancellor and Registrar for Irresponsibility, Incompetence, and Dishonesty.

Court of Law

Chandigarh, 03 September 2019 — Punjab and Haryana High Court today censured the Vice-Chancellor and the Registrar of Panjab University Chandigarh for their irresponsible, incompetent, and dishonest conduct in the administration of the institution.

Panjab University

The Court was delivering the interim order in “Professor Emanual Nahar versus Panjab University, Chandigarh” case. The court will announce the final judgment on 16 September.

The petitioner, Professor Nahar, had contended that the Vice-Chancellor had gone against the rules to remove him from the post of Dean Student Welfare (DSW). Professor Nahar, through his counsel, had claimed that 48 senators had favored his extension during the Senate meeting before providing written information to the Vice-Chancellor.

After hearing the arguments from both sides, the Court observed that the irrefragable position emerges that the Senate is the Supreme Body of the Panjab University. The Syndicate constituted by members of the Senate follows it. The Vice-Chancellor follows the Syndicate. The Vice-Chancellor is also a member of the Syndicate as well as the Senate.

“Record produced by the University before this Court reflects that Senate resolution is merely signed by Vice-Chancellor, as a single vote. It does not bear signatures of any other member of the Senate,” the court said.

“Prima facie, it appears that the Vice-Chancellor was the only one who had expressed dissent on the continuation of the petitioner as DSW although the Syndicate had recommended his extension. The tearing haste in which the Vice-Chancellor passed the impugned order, at first flash, is indicative that the Vice-Chancellor wanted his dissent to prevail,” the Court concluded.

According to the Court, “Another redeeming factor, that weighs in favor of the petitioner, Professor Nahar, is that 15 members constitute the Syndicate, of which Vice-Chancellor is just one vote. The Syndicate recommended the petitioner’s continuation by 14 votes in his favor and only one dissenting vote, that of the Vice-Chancellor.”

“To suggest that Syndicate or Senate can not disregard recommendation or non-recommendation by the Vice-Chancellor for the post of DSW flies in the face of the reasoning the University has itself adopted,” the Court noted.

Commenting on the role of the Registrar, the Court observed, “It is incumbent for the Registrar to record the minutes of the Senate meeting/proceedings for the approval by the Chairman/Vice-Chancellor. The record produced before the Court does not contain any such minutes either draft or approved. Even otherwise, general prudence warrants the Registrar to prepare the minutes of any meeting/proceedings before passing of a resolution conveying the discussion/decision taken therein and not the vice versa. In the present case, while the resolution is on the record, the minutes to be recorded by Registrar are discernibly missing. Further, the video of the Senate proceedings is contrary to what has been produced on record by the University.”

The Court, in its order, directed Panjab University to restore status quo ante as it existed a day before the date of the meeting of Senate. Doing this allows the petitioner, Professor Nahar, to continue as Dean Student Welfare (DSW).

Further, the Court instructed the University to convene a meeting of the Senate within seven days to consider the recommendations of the Syndicate, and put the matter to vote, if need be, per the law.

Source: Punjab and Haryana High Court, Chandigarh.

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September 1, 2019

Newly Crowned World Badminton Champion, Ms. P.V. Sindhu, calls on the Vice President of India, M. Venkaiah Naidu.

Sindhu, Naidu, Badminton

Sindhu, Naidu, Badminton

Photos: The Newly Crowned World Badminton Champion, Ms. P.V. Sindhu, with the Vice President of India, M. Venkaiah Naidu, in Hyderabad on 31 August 2019.

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August 29, 2019

Climate Activist Greta Thunberg Arrives in New York by Sailboat

United Nations, Climate Change

United Nations, Climate Change

United Nations, Climate Change

United Nations, Climate Change

Photos: Greta Thunberg, the 16-year-old climate activist from Sweden, sailed into New York Harbor today flanked by a fleet of 17 sailboats. Each sailboat represents one of the Sustainable Development Goals on their sails. Greta Thunberg embarked on a trans-Atlantic voyage on 14 August from Plymouth, England to New York City on a solar-powered, zero-emission racing boat, the Malizia II. She would be attending the UN Climate Action Summit in New York in September. 28 August 2019. New York, New York. UN Photos/Mark Garten.

Source: United Nations, New York.

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August 27, 2019



Photo: Prime Minister Narendra Modi of India with the Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau at the G7 Summit, in Biarritz, France, on 25 August 2019.

Following is the Declaration issued by the G7 Leaders after the G7 Summit 2019 in Biarritz, France:

26 AUGUST 2019

The G7 Leaders wish to underline their great unity and the positive spirit of the debates. The G7 Summit, organized by France in Biarritz, has successfully produced agreements by the Heads of State and Government themselves on several points summarized below:

• Trade

The G7 is committed to open and fair world trade and the stability of the global economy.

The G7 requests that the Finance Ministers closely monitor the state of the global economy.

The G7 wishes to overhaul the WTO to improve effectiveness about intellectual property protection, to settle disputes more swiftly and to eliminate unfair trade practices.

The G7 commits to reaching in 2020 an agreement to simplify regulatory barriers and modernize international taxation within the framework of the OECD.

• Iran

We fully share the objective to foster peace and stability in the region.

• Ukraine

France and Germany will organize a Normandy format summit in the coming weeks to achieve tangible results.

• Libya

We support a truce in Libya that will lead to a long-term ceasefire.

We believe that only a political solution can ensure Libya’s stability.

We call for a well-prepared international conference to bring together all the stakeholders and regional actors relevant to this conflict.

We support in this regard the work of the United Nations and the African Union to set up an Inter-Libyan conference.

• Hong Kong

The G7 reaffirms the existence and importance of the Sino-British Joint Declaration of 1984 on Hong Kong and calls for avoidance of violence.

The G7 or ‘Group of Seven’ are Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the United States. It is an intergovernmental organization that was formed in 1975 by the top economies of the time as an informal forum to discuss pressing world issues.

Prime Minister Modi of India was invited to attend the Summit as a special guest of French President Emmanuel Macron.

Source: G7-2019, Biarritz, France.

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August 23, 2019

Prime Minister Modi reiterates India’s commitment to UNESCO during his visit to the Organization.

UNESCO, Modi, India

UNESCO, Modi, India

Photos: The Director-General of UNESCO, Ms. Audrey Azoulay, with the Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi, at UNESCO Headquarters, in Paris, France, on 23 August 2019. Images provided by & copyright © UNESCO/Christelle ALIX.

Paris, France, 23 August 2019 — UNESCO Director-General, Audrey Azoulay, warmly welcomed India’s commitment to the Organization, its work, and the ideals it promotes. She was greeting Narendra Modi, Prime Minister of India, during his visit to the UNESCO headquarters.

Talks with the Prime Minister focused on UNESCO’s significant initiatives in favor of girls and women’s education.

During the discussion, the Prime Minister urged UNESCO to accelerate efforts to protect cultural diversity in Iraq, as an integral part of the “Revive the spirit of Mosul” initiative.

The New Delhi-based “UNESCO Mahatma Gandhi Institute of Education for Peace and Sustainable Development” is a significant partner in the Organization’s work on the ethics of artificial intelligence, with a particular focus on education. UNESCO recently published “The State of the Education Report for India 2019”, as part of its undertaking to rethink the future of education for the 21st century.

Prime Minister Modi ended his visit to UNESCO with an address to representatives of India’s expatriate community in France.

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August 18, 2019

New York Students to Speak with NASA Astronaut Aboard Space Station.



Photo: Russia’s Progress 73 resupply ship approaches the International Space Station’s Pirs docking compartment packed with almost three tons of food, fuel, and supplies for the Expedition 60 crew. Image provided by NASA.


Photo: International Space Station, a variety of solar arrays criss-cross the view. Image provided by NASA.


Photo: Official portrait of NASA astronaut Christina Koch. Image provided by NASA.

WASHINGTON, Aug. 14, 2019 — SciGirls viewers from New York will have an opportunity on Monday, Aug. 19, to talk live with NASA astronaut Christina Koch aboard the International Space Station. The Earth-to-space call will air live on NASA Television and the agency’s website.

Koch will answer questions beginning at 10:55 a.m. EDT from girls ages 8 to 14 participating in the “SciGirls in Space” program. SciGirls is a PBS Kids television show, website and educational outreach program engaging more than 14 million girls in STEM learning and careers. The “SciGirls in Space” program includes partners and girls in six states who will participate in the event. The event will take place at the Challenger Learning Center of Ramapo, 225 Route 59, Airmont, New York.

The International Space Station (ISS) is a space station (habitable artificial satellite) in low Earth orbit. The ISS program is a joint project between five participating space agencies: NASA (United States), Roscosmos (Russia), JAXA (Japan), ESA (Europe), and CSA (Canada).

Linking students directly to astronauts aboard the space station provides unique, authentic experiences designed to enhance student learning, performance, and interest in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.

Astronauts living in space on the orbiting laboratory communicate with NASA’s Mission Control Center in Houston 24 hours a day through the Space Network’s Tracking and Data Relay Satellites (TDRS).

Through NASA’s Artemis program, the agency will send astronauts to the Moon by 2024 and then on to Mars.

Source: NASA

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August 17, 2019

Permanent Representative of India to the United Nations Briefs Press on Jammu and Kashmir.

United Nations, India

Photo: Syed Akbaruddin, Permanent Representative of India to the United Nations, briefs correspondents following Security Council consultations on the situation in Pakistan and his country. 16 August 2019. United Nations, New York. UN Photo/Evan Schneider.

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August 16, 2019







Photos: TAG Heuer’s three new Aquaracer models for women capture the lifestyle at sea without compromising on the diving functionalities, for which, the Aquaracer line is well known. Images provided by TAG Heuer.

The TAG Heuer Aquaracer has always been a sports watch. Its robust design and wide range of functions make it a reliable tool on land, out on the ocean and below the waves. These three new quartz-powered models for ladies are no different.

Each new model has the six standard features of any Aquaracer wristwatch:

  1. Unidirectional rotating bezel
  2. Sapphire crystal
  3. Screw-down crown
  4. Water resistance to 300 m
  5. Luminescent hands and markers
  6. A double security clasp on the bracelet or strap.

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United Nations Commemorates International Day of World's Indigenous People

United Nations, World's Indigenous People


Photo: Silvia Museiya (right) from the Yiaku indigenous community of the Mukogodo forest in Kenya, have a digital moment with another participant at the event to commemorate the International Day of the World’s Indigenous People. Ms. Museiya is an advocate for the rights of indigenous peoples and chairperson of the Indigenous People National Steering Committee on Climate Change. 09 August 2019. United Nations, New York. UN Photo/Manuel Elias.

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August 15, 2019

Prime Minister Modi of India addresses the nation from Red Fort, Delhi, on Independence Day.

Modi, Independence Day, India

Modi, Independence Day, India


Photos: The Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi, addressing the nation on the occasion of 73rd Independence Day from the ramparts of Red Fort, in Delhi, on August 15, 2019.

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August 10, 2019

The World Economic Forum will host the 2019 India Economic Summit in New Delhi from 3 to 4 October.

World Economic Forum

Photo: Dalian International Conference Centre before the start of the World Economic Forum - Annual Meeting of the New Champions in Dalian, People’s Republic of China 2019. Image provided by & Copyright © World Economic Forum / Greg Beadle. [File Photo]

World Economic Forum

Photo: Zhang Lu, Founding and Managing Partner, Fusion Fund, USA; Young Global Leader, captured during the Session “How China Shapes the Future of Finance” at the World Economic Forum - Annual Meeting of the New Champions in Dalian, People’s Republic of China, 1 July 2019. Image provided by & Copyright © World Economic Forum / Sikarin Fon Thanachaiary. [File Photo]

Geneva, Switzerland, 9 August 2019 - The World Economic Forum in collaboration with the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) will host this year’s India Economic Summit in New Delhi from 3 to 4 October.

The World Economic Forum would conduct the summit under the theme “Innovating for India: Strengthening South Asia, Impacting the World.” The summit will build on its more than three decades of success and explore some of the critical issues facing the region.

Participants will discuss improving technology governance, developing infrastructure, ensuring job creation and skill development, advancing environmental sustainability, and ensuring equitable and inclusive growth for all.

The India Economic Summit will welcome over 800 participants from business, politics, academia, civil society, international organizations, arts and culture, media and members of the Forum’s communities, including Social Entrepreneurs, Global Shapers and Young Global Leaders.

The summit will address strategic issues of regional significance under four thematic pillars:

The International Affairs Reality - Geopolitical shifts and the complexity of our global system

The New Social System - Inequality, inclusive growth, health and nutrition

The New Ecological System - Environment, pollution, and climate change

The New Technological System - The Fourth Industrial Revolution, science, and innovation and entrepreneurship

“This year marks 35 years of our engagement in India,” said Viraj Mehta, World Economic Forum’s Head of Regional Agenda, India and South Asia.

Mr. Mehta disclosed that the summit would hear the government’s vision of making India a $5 trillion economy. The summit will also focus on South Asia and ASEAN. It would discuss how the two regions can enhance economic collaboration and bring the global best practices to the area.

Source: World Economic Forum

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August 7, 2019

India's University Grants Commission (UGC), asks Universities to Report Recruitment of Faculty, Vacant Posts, Reservations, and Advertisement Details. DEADLINE: 10 AUGUST 2019.

UGC India

New Delhi, 31 July 2019 — The University Grants Commission of India (UGC) has, today (31 July 2019), sent a letter to the Vice-Chancellors of all Universities. UGC has asked them to “ensure that the details of all vacant posts, along with the reservations and advertisement details are uploaded” on the website of the National Higher Education Research Center (NHERC).

Earlier, in a bid to address the issue of shortage of quality teaching faculty in higher education institutions, the University Grants Commission (UGC) had issued guidelines for the recruitment of faculty.

The UGC has set a time-frame of six months for the entire recruitment process for the faculties, which includes:

  1. Identification of Vacancies.
  2. Permission for filling up Vacancies.
  3. Release of Advertisement for Vacancies.
  4. Constitution of the Selection Committee.
  5. Fixing of Dates of the Selection Committee Meetings.
  6. Scrutiny of Applications.

UGC Secretary, Rajnish Jain, in his previous (04 June 2019) letter to the Vice-Chancellors, had asked the institutions to comply with the UGC guidelines in letter and spirit and complete the recruitment at the earliest.

Main Points of UGC Guidelines for Recruitment of Faculty in Universities and Colleges:

• HEIs should follow the selection process as per their Acts, Statutes or constituent documents and per the University Grants Commission (Minimum Qualifications for Appointment of Teachers and other Academic Staff in Universities and Colleges and other Measures for the Maintenance of Standards in Higher Education) Regulations, 2018.

• HEIs should, however, ensure that all the vacant posts, along with the reservations details, are uploaded on the NHERC online portal.

• The Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) and the University Grants Commission (UGC) would do the monitoring of the filling up of the vacancies through the above portal.

• HEIs should initiate and complete the selection process within six months.

• The selection process should be strictly per the University Grants Commission (Minimum Qualifications for Appointment of Teachers and other Academic Staff in Universities and Colleges and other Measures for the Maintenance of Standards in Higher Education) Regulations, 2018 and as amended from time to time.

• Violations of the Guidelines described above may lead to appropriate action by the UGC against the institution, including withholding the grants.

Source: University Grants Commission, New Delhi.


• The University Grants Commission of India (UGC) is a statutory body charged with coordination, determination, and maintenance of standards of higher education. It recognizes universities and disburses grants to such recognized universities and colleges.

UPDATE — New Delhi, 07 August 2019.


The Universities and Colleges may please note that the UGC has today fixed 10 August 2019 as the deadline for filing information on Recruitment of Faculty, Vacant Posts, Reservations, and Advertisement Details.


• UPDATE — 19 August 2019.

The UGC has, today, sent a letter to the Vice-Chancellors of all higher education institutions funded by the State/UT Governments.

The letter reminds them of the MHRD Office Memorandum dated 17 January 2019. The Memorandum had asked for immediate implementation of Reservation for Economically Weaker Sections (EWS’s) for Admission in Higher Educational Institutions per the One Hundred and Third Amendment of the Constitution.

The letter asks the concerned universities to implement the above instructions from the Academic Session 2019-2020 in consultation with the respective State/UT Governments.

Today’s UGC letter, signed by Dr. Dev Swarup, Additional Secretary, has been dispatched to the Vice-Chancellors of the concerned universities, with a copy to their Registrars. It would reach them by 20 August 2019.

Following Vice-Chancellors from Punjab would receive the letter:

  • The Vice-Chancellor, Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar 143005, Punjab.
  • The Vice-Chancellor, Punjabi University, Patiala 147002, Punjab.
  • The Vice-Chancellor, Panjab University, Chandigarh 160014, Punjab.
  • The Vice-Chancellor, Rajiv Gandhi National University of Law, Patiala 147001, Punjab.

Following Registrars from Punjab would receive a copy of the letter sent to their respective Vice-Chancellor:

  • The Registrar, Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar 143005, Punjab.
  • The Registrar, Punjabi University, Patiala 147002, Punjab.
  • The Registrar, Panjab University, Chandigarh 160014, Punjab.
  • The Registrar, Rajiv Gandhi National University of Law, Patiala 147001, Punjab.

The UGC letter asks the involved universities to display the implementation of the EWS Scheme on their websites as soon as possible.

Earlier, UGC had sent a copy of the MHRD Memorandum to the States/UTs. They were requested to see that the EWS Reservation becomes operational from the Academic year 2019-2020 in all the higher educational institutions directly or indirectly funded by them.


27 August, 20l9


• Establishment of Dr. S. Radhakrishnan Chair and Four Rajya Sabha Fellowships under the “Rajya Sabha Research and Study Scheme.”

UGC has written to all universities, informing them that Rajya Sabha has initiated the process for the establishment of Dr. S. Radhakrishnan Chair and Four Rajya Sabha Fellowships.

Rajya Sabha Secretariat has invited Applications for awarding the Chair and Fellowships. The details of the Scheme including eligibility criteria, grants, suggestive broad themes of research for Chair/Fellowships, terms and conditions for the Chair and Fellowship, and the Application Forms are available on the Rajya Sabha website.

Duly filled in applications may be sent to Shri S. D. Nautiyal, Joint Secretary, Rajya Sabha Secretariat, Room No. 517 (Fifth Floor), Parliament House Annexe, New Delhi - 110 001, on or before 31 August 2019.

Dr. S. Radhakrlshnan Chair

The chair is open to an eminent researcher/academic of repute/expert with a proven record of research or scholarship and publications ln the study of the political system, democratic institutions and socio-economic challenges facing the nation. Former Members of Parliament/State Legislatures and retired officers of Parliament/State Legislature Secretariats are also eligible to apply. Duration of the chair is two years, extendable up to one year. The occupant of the chair is entitled to a grant of Rs. 20 lakh plus Rs. 2.50 lakh as contingency grant.

Rajya Sabha Fellowships

The Fellowship is open to scholars who have relevant educational qualification/experience for undertaking the study in line with the objective of the Scheme. Former Members of Parliament/State Legislatures and retired officers of Parliament/State Legislature Secretariats are also eligible to apply. Duration of the Fellowship is 18 months, which is extendable for up to six months. The fellows are entitled to get a grant of Rs. 8 lakh plus Rs. 50,000 as contingency grant.

Rajya Sabha Student Engagement Internships

Students pursuing graduation and post-graduation courses in any discipline would be eligible for the internship program. There would be ten Internships for two months during summer vacation. The interns would get a consolidated amount of Rs.10,000/- per month as stipend.

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Edited & Posted by Surender Hastir | 5:47 AM | Link to this Post

August 2, 2019

University Grants Commission (UGC), India, selects 10 Public and 10 Private Universities for "Institution of Eminence" Status.

UGC, India

UGC Members


Photo: The Union Minister for Human Resource Development, Dr. Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank,’ with the University Grants Commission (UGC) Chairman, and the Members. He held a meeting with them. New Delhi. 02 August 2019.

New Delhi, 02 August 2019 — The University Grants Commission (UGC) has recommended the following universities for the coveted “Institution of Eminence” Status:

Delhi University


  1. IIT Bombay
  2. IIT Delhi
  3. IISC Bangalore
  4. IIT Madras
  5. IIT Kharagpur
  6. Delhi University
  7. University of Hyderabad, Hyderabad
  8. Jadavpur University, Kolkata
  9. Anna University, Chennai
  10. Banaras Hindu University (BHU), Varanasi

(UGC will finalize the names of Jadavpur University and Anna University after consultation with the respective state governments.)


  1. BITS Pilani, Rajasthan
  2. Manipal Academy of Higher Education, Manipal, Karnataka
  3. Jio Institute (Reliance Foundation, Maharashtra) [Greenfield Category]
  4. Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham, Bangalore
  5. VIT Vellore, Tamil Nadu
  6. Jamia Hamdard, New Delhi
  7. Kalinga Instt. of Industrial Technology, Bhubaneswar
  8. OP JINDAL University, Haryana
  9. Shiv Nadar University, Uttar Pradesh
  10. Bharti University (Satya Bharti Foundation), Delhi [Greenfield Category]

Among the Public Universities, Savitribai Phule Pune University, Pune; Aligarh Muslim University (AMU), Aligarh; Tezpur University, Tezpur, Assam; Panjab University, Chandigarh; and Andhra University, Visakhapatnam were also in the race. They all, however, failed to make the cut as their World Ranking was beyond 800 or they did not figure in the QS World University Rankings 2020.

Following private universities were also in the race: Azim Premji University, Bangalore; Ashoka University, Sonepat; KREA University, Chennai; IIHS (Indian Institute for Human Settlements), and Indian Institute of Public Health, Gandhinagar. These institutions have not been given the IoE status as they did not figure in the NIRF Rankings 2018 and 2019.

In the case of the Private Institutions proposed as Institutions of Eminence, there will be no financial support. They will, however, be entitled to more autonomy as a select category Deemed University.

Each of the ten Public Institutions selected as Institute of Eminence (IoE) will get financial assistance up to Rs. 1000 Crore over five years.

Source: Ministry of Human Resource Development, Government of India.

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Edited & Posted by Surender Hastir | 12:59 PM | Link to this Post

July 31, 2019

QS Best Student Cities Ranking 2019: London Named World's Best Student City. Bangalore Best Student City in India.

QS Best Student Cities

Bangalore, QS Best Student Cities

Photo: Bangalore. Bangalore is QS Best Student City in India. Image Credit: M. R. Gears.

QS Best Student Cities

Photo: London. Big Ben, and Westminster Abbey. London is the World’s Best Student City. Image Credit: Duane Wessels.

LONDON, July 31, 2019 — London is the world’s best student city for the second consecutive year, according to the latest guide to the globe’s top urban study destinations. The sixth edition of the QS Best Student Cities Ranking, compiled by global consultancy QS Quacquarelli Symonds, sees London outrank competition from Tokyo and Melbourne.

London remains the world’s leading student city due to the high number of top universities present in the city, its high levels of employer activity and student diversity. Further, the global student body holds it in high regard. These positive elements outweigh London’s low ‘Affordability’ score.

QS ranks Student Cities according to:

  • Number and performance of their Universities.
  • The extent to which employers are actively hiring there.
  • City’s affordability.
  • City’s Desirability and Quality of Life.
  • Diversity of the city’s student body.

Feedback from over 87,000 current and prospective international students also impacts the results.

  • Both the US and UK have 14 cities ranked, led by Boston (12th) and London (1st) respectively.
  • Canada’s top City is Montreal (6th) and second-best according to the students surveyed;
  • Toronto (11th) ranks third for Desirability;
  • Asia’s top city remains Tokyo (2nd) followed by Seoul (10th) and Hong Kong (14th);
  • China’s top is Beijing (32nd), with Shanghai (33rd):
  • India’s top is Bangalore (81st), with Mumbai (85th);
  • Australia boasts seven cities, with Melbourne (3rd) and Sydney (9th) confirming their top-10 rank;
  • Auckland (37th) is New Zealand’s top city;
  • In Continental Europe, Munich (4th) leads, followed by Berlin (5th), Paris (7th) and Zurich (8th);
  • Scandinavia’s best is Stockholm (37th);
  • Moscow (34th) leads in Eastern Europe, followed by Prague (35th);
  • Budapest (43rd) tops the Affordability Indicator, followed by Kuala Lumpur;
  • Latin America’s best City is Buenos Aires once again (31st ).
  • Dubai-Ajman-Sharjah (60th) tops the Middle East;
  • Africa’s top is Johannesburg (78th ), with Cape Town (80th);
  • Pakistan’s leading city is Islamabad (110th), with Lahore (115th).

QS Best Student Cities

Rank — City — Country

  1. London — United Kingdom
  2. Tokyo — Japan
  3. Melbourne — Australia
  4. Munich — Germany
  5. Berlin — Germany
  6. Montreal — Canada
  7. Paris — France
  8. Zurich — Switzerland
  9. Sydney — Australia
  10. Seoul — South Korea
  11. Toronto — Canada
  12. Boston — United States
  13. Vienna — Austria
  14. Hong Kong — Hong Kong
  15. Edinburgh — United Kingdom
  16. Vancouver — Canada
  17. Taipei — Taiwan
  18. Kyoto-Osaka-Kobe — Japan
  19. New York — United States
  20. Singapore — Singapore
  21. Barcelona — Spain
  22. Brisbane — Australia
  23. Canberra — Australia
  24. Amsterdam — Netherlands
  25. Los Angeles — United States
  26. Adelaide — Australia
  27. Auckland — New Zealand
  28. Kuala Lumpur — Malaysia
  29. Manchester — United Kingdom
  30. Buenos Aires — Argentina
  31. Beijing — China
  32. Shanghai — China
  33. Moscow — Russia
  34. Prague — Czech Republic
  35. San Francisco — United States
  36. Dublin — Ireland
  37. Stockholm — Sweden
  38. Glasgow — United Kingdom
  39. Milan — Italy
  40. Chicago — United States
  41. Perth — Australia
  42. Brussels — Belgium
  43. Budapest — Hungary
  44. Ottawa — Canada
  45. Copenhagen — Denmark
  46. Coventry — United Kingdom
  47. Nottingham — United Kingdom
  48. Birmingham — United Kingdom
  49. Lyon — France
  50. Warsaw — Poland
  51. Lisbon — Portugal
  52. Mexico City — Mexico
  53. Santiago — Chile
  54. Gothenburg — Sweden
  55. Helsinki — Finland
  56. Atlanta — United States
  57. Newcastle Upon Tyne — United Kingdom
  58. Bangkok — Thailand
  59. Brno — Czech Republic
  60. Dubai-Sharjah-Ajman — United Arab Emirates
  61. Philadelphia — United States
  62. Washington DC — United States
  63. Aberdeen — United Kingdom
  64. Christchurch — New Zealand
  65. St. Petersburg — Russia
  66. Pittsburgh — United States
  67. Hsinchu — Taiwan
  68. Stuttgart — Germany
  69. Rome — Italy
  70. Istanbul — Turkey
  71. Athens — Greece
  72. Tomsk — Russia
  73. Toulouse — France
  74. Valencia — Spain
  75. San Diego — United States
  76. Sao Paulo — Brazil
  77. Johannesburg — South Africa
  78. Graz — Austria
  79. Cape Town — South Africa
  80. Bangalore — India
  81. Bogota — Colombia
  82. Brighton — United Kingdom
  83. Gold Coast — Australia
  84. Manila — Philippines
  85. Mumbai — India
  86. Baltimore — United States
  87. Abu Dhabi — United Arab Emirates
  88. Ankara — Turkey
  89. Daejeon — South Korea
  90. Monterrey — Mexico
  91. Novosibirsk — Russia
  92. Houston — United States
  93. Miami — United States
  94. Nagoya — Japan
  95. Vilnius — Lithuania
  96. Bristol — United Kingdom
  97. Lima — Peru
  98. Nanjing — China
  99. Montpellier — France
  100. Beirut — Lebanon
  101. Rio de Janeiro — Brazil
  102. Sheffield — United Kingdom
  103. Krakow — Poland
  104. Wuhan — China
  105. Liverpool — United Kingdom
  106. Cairo — Egypt
  107. Wroclaw — Poland
  108. Jakarta — Indonesia
  109. Riga — Latvia
  110. Islamabad — Pakistan
  111. Almaty — Kazakhstan
  112. Delhi — India
  113. Dallas — United States
  114. Chennai — India
  115. Lahore — Pakistan
  116. Quebec — Canada
  117. Kiev — Ukraine
  118. Leicester — United Kingdom
  119. Minsk — Belarus

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “The fact that London has again been ranked the best city in the world in which to be a student is fantastic news. It is no surprise given that London is home to world-leading higher education institutions and a vibrant cultural life. London is open to students and talent from around the world.”

Debuting at 81st position globally, Bangalore has been ranked India’s best city for students. In terms of affordability, Bengaluru is ranked seventh globally.

The other top Indian cities include Mumbai (85), Delhi (113), and Chennai (115). Among these, Mumbai has gained ground, moving 14 places up from last year.

Source: QS Quacquarelli Symonds

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Edited & Posted by Surender Hastir | 3:01 AM | Link to this Post

July 29, 2019

Porsche India welcomes the new Macan, while Porsche introduces new 911 Carrera Coupé and 911 Carrera Cabriolet.

Porsche India

Photo: Pavan Shetty, Director of Porsche India, at the launch of the new Macan.

Porsche India

Photo: Porsche’s compact SUV the Macan is now available in India.

New Delhi, 29 July 2019 — Following a comprehensive upgrade, one of Porsche’s most popular models, the Macan, is now available in India. Its performance credentials underline the model’s position as the genuine sports car in its segment. The guests saw the latest generation at a launch event today. The brand’s compact SUV has evolved in terms of comfort and driving dynamics, with two engine versions available at the launch, the Macan and the more powerful Macan S.

Commenting on the arrival of the new model, Pavan Shetty, Director, Porsche India, said: “The Macan has been one of our most successful series in India. With the new generation combining even more pronounced Porsche DNA, greater performance and comfort, I am confident that the success story is sure to continue.”

“I believe that the Macan is the most exciting compact SUV on the market, never allowing you to forget it is a true sports car at heart. The new range offers the perfect balance of emotions and functionality. The newly introduced Crest Care Package for the Macan offers complete peace of mind for the vehicle’s upkeep. I am delighted to be welcoming the first variants of Macan to the market,” Mr. Shetty stated.

• Porsche introduces new 911 Carrera Coupé and 911 Carrera Cabriolet.

Meanwhile, Porsche is expanding its eighth-generation range with the addition of the 911 Carrera. It is launching a new 911 Carrera Coupé and a further 911 Carrera Cabriolet.



Porsche Carrera Cabriolet

Porsch CarreraCabriolet

Porsche Carrera Coupe

PorscheCarrera Coupe

Porsche Carrera Coupe

The latest Porsche 911 Carrera Coupé and 911 Carrera Cabriolet are now available for order.

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Edited & Posted by Surender Hastir | 3:09 PM | Link to this Post


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