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2nd Handloom Day to be observed on August 7, 2016

The second National Handloom Day will be celebrated all over the country, on August 7, 2016. The main function will be held in Varanasi in which Sant Kabir Awards and National Handloom Awards will be presented. The Union Textiles Minister Smt. Smriti Zubin Irani would be the Chief Guest on the occasion. Minister of State for Skill Development & Entrepreneurship (I/C), Shri Rajiv Pratap Rudy would be the Guest of Honour. Minister of State, Textiles, Shri Ajay Tamta and the Textiles Minister of Uttar Pradesh, Shri Mahboob Ali would also grace the occasion.
•    Besides the main event in Varanasi, there will be many other programmes. The National Handloom Day will also be celebrated at state level in all the states. In addition, the Day will also be celebrated in more than 200 handloom clusters. Doordarshan will also broadcast a special one hour long programme on that day in the evening.
•    7th August was notified by the Government of India as National Handloom Day vide Gazette Notification dated 29th  July, 2015 with the objective to generate awareness about the importance of handloom industry and its contribution to the socioeconomic development of the country in general and to promote handlooms, increase income of weavers and enhance their pride in particular. 
•    The date August 7 has been chosen due to its special significance in India’s freedom struggle; it was on this day in 1905 that the Swadeshi Movement was formally launched, at a massive meeting in the Calcutta Town hall. The movement involved revival of domestic products and production processes. The Government of India has declared August 7 as National Handloom Day every year, in memory of this.
•    The first National Handloom Day was celebrated last year and Hon’ble Prime Minister was the Chief Guest in the main event held in Chennai on 7th August, 2015
 

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President of India’s Message on the Eve of National Day of Macedonia

The President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee has extended his greetings and felicitations to the Government and people of the Republic of Macedonia on the eve of their National Day (August 2, 2016). 
•    In a message to His Excellency Mr. Gjorge Ivanov, the President of the Republic of Macedonia, the President has said, “On behalf of the Government, the people of India and on my own behalf, it is with great pleasure that I extend warm greetings and felicitations to Your Excellency and to the people of the Republic of Macedonia on the occasion of your National Day. 
•    The long-standing relations between India and Macedonia have remained warm and friendly – based on the strong foundation of our age-old cultural and economic linkages. 
•    Over the recent years, our bilateral relationship has flourished – strengthened by our mutual understanding and multi-dimensional cooperation. 
•    He said that he is confident that our ties will continue to expand and diversify to the mutual benefit of the peoples of our two countries. 
•    He conveyed his best wishes for Excellency’s good health and well-being and for the continued progress and prosperity of the friendly people of the Republic of Macedonia.

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President of India’s message on the eve of National Day of Swiss Confederation

The President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee has extended his greetings and felicitations to the Government and people of the Swiss Confederation on the eve of their National Day (August 1, 2016). 
•    In a message to His Excellency Mr. Johann N. Schneider-Ammann, the President of the Swiss Confederation, the President has said, “On behalf of the Government, the people of India and on my own behalf, it is with great pleasure that I extend warm greetings and felicitations to Your Excellency and to the people of the Swiss Confederation on the occasion of your National Day. 
•    Historically India and Switzerland have shared warm and cordial relations, and the recent visit to Switzerland of India’s Prime Minister underlines that friendship. 
•    Governments will strive to work together to advance our friendly ties to the mutual benefit of our two peoples. 
•    He conveyed his Excellency’s good health and well-being and for the continued progress and prosperity of the friendly people of the Swiss Confederation.”

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International Tiger Day observed

International Tiger Day was observed on 29 July 2016. The day is held annually on 29th July to give worldwide attention to the reservation of tigers.
•    The goal of the day is to promote a global system for protecting the natural habitats of tigers and to raise public awareness and support for tiger conservation issues.
•    It was founded in 2010 at the St. Petersburg Tiger Summit, with the aim to double the big cat population by 2022.
•    As per latest data by tiger experts, the world has lost 97 percent of all wild tigers in a little over 100 years.
•    The World Wildlife Fund and the Global Tiger Forum says that the number of wild tigers has gone up to 3890 from the earlier 2010 estimate of 3200.
•    In 1915, the number of tigers was 1 lakh.
•    Some species of tigers have already been extinct.
•    India leads tiger population countries with an estimated population of 2226.
•    Despite countries such as India, Nepal, Russia and Bhutan registering a rise in tiger population, the status of the animal remains endangered.
•    Poaching has been the biggest threat to tigers in India. 81 tigers were victims to poachers in 2014, 25 in 2015 and by April 2016 it was 28.
•    According to reports of United Nations Environment Programme and Interpol, the environmental crime industry, which includes illegal trade in wildlife, is worth 258 billion dollars.
•    Expansion of cities and agriculture by humans led to loss of 93% natural habitat for tigers lost
•    Fewer tigers can survive in small, scattered islands of habitat, which make tigers more vulnerable to poaching, which lead to a higher risk of inbreeding.
•    Sundarbans, a large mangrove forest area shared by India and Bangladesh on the northern coast of the Indian Ocean, is one of the world’s largest places where tiger populations is found.
•    Sundarbans harbors Bengal tigers and protects coastal regions from storm surges and wind damage.
•    Rising sea levels that were caused by climate change threaten to wipe out these forests and the last remaining habitat of this tiger population.
•    WWF study says that without mitigation efforts, projected sea level rise will go up by nearly a foot by 2070, which could destroy nearly the entire Sundarbans tiger habitat.

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Mandela Phones Lunched for African Children on Mandela Day

To promote anti-apartheid icon Nelson Mandela's vision of education for all children through using technology, a series of affordable mobiles and tablets pre-embedded with content on the life and times of the former South African President have been launched in the country.

•    The project by AG Media in partnership with the Nelson Mandela Long Walk to Freedom Foundation is a Mandela Day initiative as millions of South Africans are preparing to a 67-minute community service tomorrow in memory of the globally-revered leader's 98th birth anniversary.
•    All devices feature exclusive educational content and approved content never seen before about Mandela in the form of pictures, wallpapers, quotes and more.
•    In schools, where the Mandela Library project has already built a library, the devices will be donated on merit basis, like how many children attend the school and their needs.
•    AG Mobile's CEO Anthony Goodman said that encouraging learning and education among the children is the cornerstone of the Nelson Mandela Long Walk to Freedom Education Project.

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World Emoji Day: 17 July

July 17, is “officially” World Emoji Day.The concept of World Emoji Day has been created by Jeremy Burge, the founder of Emojipedia. Emojipedia is a emoji data base which stores information about all things emoji. 
•    July 17 is displayed on iOS Calendar Emoji. 
•    Emojis are not just symbols with facial expression. It is a form of language in its own and has been constantly growing and evolving. 
•    Emojis have evolved from basic icons with smiley expressions to varied characters and themes with respect to diversity of race, religion and gender. 
•    These unique icons have not only given its users many reasons to laugh but has also put them in uncomfortable situations due to lack of knowledge about each and every expression. 
•    Micro-blogging site Twitter has been encouraging people to use #worldemojiday and tweet about their favorite emojis. 

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15 July: World Youth Skills Day

The World Youth Skills Day (WYSD) was on 15 July 2016 observed globally with the theme Skills Development to Improve Youth Employment.

•    On the occasion, United Nations organised the event facilitated by the UN Envoy on Youth Ahmad Alhendawi. 
•    The event was co-organized with the Permanent Missions of Portugal and Sri Lanka to the United Nations, UNESCO and the International Labour Organization (ILO).
•    The day is observed to create more awareness and a discussion on training and the development of skills for the youth of today, in hopes of creating a better opportunity for them when it comes to employment.
•    The World Youth Skills Day was established by the United Nations (UN) General Assembly on 11 November 2014.
•    The Assembly designated 15 July as the World Youth Skills Day in order to raise awareness about the importance of investing in youth skills development.

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29 June: National Statistics Day

The 10th National Statistics Day was celebrated on 29 June 2016 across the country with the theme Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare.
•    The main function for the celebration was organised by the Ministry of Statistics Programme Implementation at Vigyan Bhawan, New Delhi.
•    The National Statistics Day is celebrated annually on the occasion of birth anniversary of Late Prof PC Mahalanobis, India’s eminent statistician.
•    Its objective is to create public awareness among people, especially the younger generation about the importance of statistics in daily life as well as in the process of planning and development.
•    The 2015 National Statistics Day was celebrated with the theme social development.
•    World Statistics Day is celebrated on 20 October 2010 worldwide.
•    He was born on 29 June 1893. He was an Indian Bengali scientist and applied statistician.
•    He is best remembered for the Mahalanobis distance, a statistical measure.
•    He made pioneering studies in anthropometry in India.
•    As a member of Planning Commission, he gave the Two-sector Input-output model for the Second Five Year Plan (1956-61) which became famous as Nehru-Mahalanobis model or Basic Industry strategy of economic growth.
•    He founded the Indian Statistical Institute, and contributed to the design of large-scale sample surveys.

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International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking observed - 26 June


International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking was observed on 26 June 2016. The day was observed with theme Listen First.
•    2016 theme Listen First is an initiative to increase support for prevention of drug use that is based on science and is thus an effective investment in the well-being of children and youth, their families and their communities.
•    On this day, the United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime (UNODC) also released the World Drug Report 2016.
•    On 7 December 1987, United Nations general Assembly (UNGA) via resolution 42/112 decided to observe 26 June as the International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking. It was decided to observe the day as an expression of its determination to strengthen action and cooperation to achieve the goal of an international society free of drug abuse.
•    This resolution recommended further action with regard to the report and conclusions of the 1987 International Conference on Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking.
•    Earlier in April 2016, the United Nations held a Special Session (UNGASS) on drugs. This session marked an important milestone in achieving the goals set in the policy document of 2009 "Political Declaration and Plan of Action on International Cooperation towards an Integrated and Balanced Strategy to Counter the World Drug Problem.
•    The plan defined action to be taken by Member States as well as goals to be achieved by 2019.
•    Measures to address demand and supply reduction and to improve access to controlled medicines while preventing diversion.
•    It also cover the areas of human rights, youth, children, women and communities; emerging challenges, including new psychoactive substances; strengthening international cooperation; and alternative development.
•    The text puts new emphasis on proportionate national sentencing policies and practices for drug-related offences, and features a strong focus on prevention and treatment.
•    On this day, the Punjab Frontier of Border Security Force organised a Cycle Rally comprising 65 BSF personnel led by Deputy Inspector General (Operations) BSF Punjab Frontier Mohan Lal from its Jalandhar Headquarters.
•    This Cycle Rally was aimed at spreading the message of utmost dedication to national Security, awareness against drugs and to spread the message of physical fitness amongst the citizens and particularly amongst the youth.

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World Hydrography Day -21 June

World Hydrography Day (WHD) 2016 was observed on 21 June 2016 across the world.
•    The theme for the WHD 2016 was Hydrography - the key to well-managed seas and waterways. The theme tries to focus attention on the fundamental importance of hydrography.
•    The World Hydrography Day also marks the 95th anniversary of the establishment of the International Hydrographic Organization (IHO).
•    The day is celebrated to increase public awareness of the vital role that hydrography plays in everyone’s life.
•    On 29 November 2005, the United Nations adopted Resolution A/60/30 to welcome the adoption by the International Hydrographic Organization of the World Hydrography Day to be celebrated annually on 21 June.
•    The theme for the World Hydrography Day 2015 was Our seas and waterways - yet to be fully charted and explored.
•    Hydrography involves measuring the depth of the water and fixing the position of all the navigational hazards that lie on the seafloor.  
•    Hydrography also involves measuring the tide and the currents.
•    It is done mainly with specialised ships and boats operating echo sounders and sonars. Survey aircraft fitted with lasers are also used to measure the depth.  
•    Hydrographic information is required for the safe, competent and sustainable conduct of every human activity that takes place in, on or under the sea.

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