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How Children in Bengal's Bardhaman are becoming catalysts of change (January 24 is National Girl Child Day) (13:28)
By Neola DSouza
National Girl Child Day is observed every year on January 24 to celebrate girl children and to bring the focus on issues like skewed sex ratio, female foeticide, child marriage, education, health and safety of the girl child, unequal treatment and gender disparities.

Sikkim, as a model of stability, bolsters India's defences (Comment) (12:50)
By Claude ArpiIANS Photo Service
In the summer of 2017, the Doklam incident could have taken a dramatic turn for India (and China too!); fortunately, it ended well with the withdrawal of the Chinese and Indian armies from an area near the trijunction between Sikkim, Tibet and Bhutan. However, in early 2018, several media reports mentioned fast-paced road construction activities in the area, particularly a 12-km-long stretch from Yatung, in Chumbi Valley, to Doklam, being built by China.

How is the electoral game shaping up in key states (Comment) (11:40)
By Saeed NaqviIANS Photo Service
The BJP in Kerala may have boosted its saffron image on the Sabrimala issue but is unlikely to gain much electoral advantage in 2019. That has been the pattern for decades: it has zero conversion rate even though it has a vote share of 10 percent. It would certainly like to weaken, harm, destroy the CPI-M. Towards this end it has to direct its cadres to quietly help the Congress. But in this instance it is not inclined to augment Congress numbers in New Delhi.

Mauritius PM in India for diaspora conclave (18:42)
New Delhi, Jan 20 (IAMS) Mauritius Prime Minister Pravind Jugnauth arrived here on Sunday on a nine-day visit to India during which he will be the chief guest at the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (PBD), the January 21-23 Indian diaspora conclave to be held in Varanasi.

The dangers of politicizing caste-based quota (Column: IANS Insight-Ruminations) (15:48)
By Ananda Majumdar
The governments decision to implement 10 per cent quota in jobs and educational institutions in the general category has the two-fold purpose of playing up to the Sangh Parivars upper caste constituency and, more importantly, holding off the prospect of organized violence that an upper caste-led agitation could possibly trigger. The anti-Mandal protests following the V.P. Singh governments decision to implement the Mandal Commission report on reservation to the Other Backward Classes in government jobs and educational institutions provide a telling background of how violent and tragic such an agitation could become.

Microsoft lays AI sensors for smart farming, cutting-edge healthcare in India (Tech Trend) (13:16)
By Nishant AroraIANS Photo Service
Bengaluru, Jan 20 (IANS) China, the world's biggest agricultural producer, is leading the race when it comes to empowering farmers with Artificial Intelligence (AI)-driven technologies.

BJP's Look East strategy (Column IANS Insight: Ground Reality) (12:46)
By Rahul VatsaIANS Photo Service
The significance that North India had in the BJP's 2014 general election strategy, probably it will be what East India will be in the 2019 general election. And while Varanasi was the epicenter of 2014 general election, it may be Puri or Kolkata in 2019.

Indian cricketers seem to prefer ODI format (Column IANS Insight: Close-In) (12:34)
By Yajurvindra Singh
The Indian cricket team has made history Down Under. Winning the Test series was just one part of the celebration. Beating the Australians in the ODIs, for the first time, was the icing on the cake.

#MeToo strikes where virtue means lack of opportunity (Column IANS Insight: B-Town) (12:20)
By Vinod MiraniIANS Photo Service
Where does the burden of proof lie, with who? That is the question when it comes to the celebrities and the media and, of course, the person who wakes up after years and ages to accuse a celebrity or a coworker of misdemeanor, like molestation or even rape?

Social media as an instrument of combat (Column IANS Insight-Spy's Eye) (12:06)
By D.C. PathakIANS Photo Service
The Age of Information that set in with the success of IT revolution some three decades ago pushed the world economy and cross-border human interactions up in a transformational manner and established globalisation as a new reality.

No Rahul at Kolkata rally is like "Hamlet" without the Prince of Denmark

Column: Political Circus)
 (16:08)
By Amulya GanguliIANS Photo Service
Mamata Banerjee's mega rally in Kolkata had one notable absentee. Although many in the Who's Who of opposition stalwarts graced the occasion, Rahul Gandhi was conspicuous by his absence.

Gangetic river dolphins in the Indian Sundarbans struggle with swelling salinity (11:14)
By Sahana GhoshIANS Photo Service
Kolkata, Jan 18 (IANS/Mongabay) Indias national aquatic animal, the endangered Gangetic river dolphin (Platanista gangetica gangetica), is rarely visible in the waterways of the Indian Sundarbans. A study sheds light on the rise in salinity in the water and reduced freshwater flow for the mammals disappearing act in the iconic estuarine habitat.

National Clean Air Programme should set higher targets (Comment) (18:14)
By Rajendra Shende
There is a striking similarity between Paris Climate Agreement and Indias National Clean Air Programme (NCAP) launched recently. The Paris Agreement is an agreement by the countries to map a global action to keep global warming two degrees centigrade below pre-industrial level.

India rising: Investment opportunities with higher incomes (Column: Behind Infra Lines) (17:44)
By Taponeel Mukherjee
As per capita incomes in India move higher and as we converge towards $2,000 per capita, it would be interesting to look at the potential investment opportunities as the next phase of income growth begins.

Bio-adsorbents: Cost-effective option for ridding industrial wastewater of heavy metals (Comment) (12:54)
By Roshna N.
The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) has reported that India is on the verge of becoming a highly water-stressed country. At this stage, reducing wastewater generation and water recycling should be given due importance. Reuse of industrial wastewater has been in practice for a long time in India, and this water is mainly used for agriculture purposes in nearby areas. However, this has led to high levels of heavy metal concentration in vegetables grown with industrial wastewater.

India's plan to breathe easy is out, but targets are not legally binding (13:22)
By Mayank AggarwalIANS Photo Service
New Delhi, Jan 15 (IANS/Mongabay) The Indian government has unveiled its long-awaited National Clean Air Programme (NCAP) that aims at a 20-30 percent reduction of particulate matter (PM) concentration over the next five years, with an overall goal of mitigating air pollution and improving air quality in the country, which has some of the world's most polluted cities.

India needs to improve its educational outcomes to catch up with China (Column: Active Voice) (12:04)
By Amit Kapoor
Both China and India started building their national education systems under comparable conditions in the late 1940s. Different policies and historical circumstances have, however, led them to different educational outcomes, with China outperforming India not just in terms of its percentage of literate population and enrollment rates at all levels of education, but also in terms of number of world-class institutions in higher education, and greater research output.

Russian needle of suspicion extraordinary malignancy against Trump (Comment) (14:50)
By Mayank ChhayaIANS Photo Service
Even by the standards of the malignancies that surround US President Donald Trump personally, the one reported by The New York Times on January 11 was stunning in its implication.

A school that challenged the claustrophobic orthodoxy of 'purdah' (IANS Special Series) (15:46)
By Archana SharmaIANS Photo Service
Jaipur, Jan 13 (IANS) Located in the heart of the capital of Rajasthan, this all-girls school, started by an erstwhile queen, began a silent revolution in 1943 when the region was steeped in the claustrophobic orthodoxy of the �purdah' system for women.

How five days a year transformed Jaipur's cultural landscape over the past decade (12:34)
By Archana Sharma
Jaipur, Jan 13 (IANS) With winter in full bloom, Rajasthan's historic capital city is all set to embrace the festive feel as the much anticipated Jaipur Literature Festival (JLF) draws near. Having already hosted nearly 2,000 speakers and over a million book lovers at its 11 previous editions, the "Pink City" bears testimony to the strong cultural impact the festival has had on its self-image and social consciousness.

New law on quotas: Is the BJP bidding goodbye to economic reforms? (Column: Political Circus) (12:14)
By Amulya GanguliIANS Photo Service
Just as Narendra Modi mocked the Congress on the rural employment scheme by saying that it was a living example -- "jeeta jagta smarak" -- of the party's failures, the parliamentary approval of a 10 per cent quota for the economically weaker sections under the government's aegis underlined its inadequacies on the economic front.

Time-bound plan needed to address contaminated water (Feature) (11:32)
By Mayank AggarwalIANS Photo Service
New Delhi, Jan 12 (IANS/Mongabay) Groundwater in over 25,000 habitations across India is contaminated with excess arsenic and fluoride levels. To address the issue, a parliamentary committee has now asked the Union Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation (MDWS) to devise a time-bound plan to achieve the target of supplying clean drinking water to the contaminated areas.

Vaduvoor: A tiny village luring and feeding global birds (Feature) (11:32)
By Vasudevan SridharanIANS Photo Service
Chennai, Jan 11 (IANS/Mongabay) "When some visitors ask, 'How do the birds know this lake is full?', I simply tell them that I telephone the migratory birds and inform them," said Ramesh mockingly as he sits at the tip of a lake in south India.

Swimming camels, mangrove islands of Kutch face mounting challenges (Feature) (12:08)
By Azera Parveen Rahman
Bhuj (Gujarat), Jan 10 (IANS) In the land of contrasts that Kutch is, winter is the lean feeding season for its unique breed of Kharai camels. These camels, unlike the kind most of us are familiar with, are typically dependent on the mangroves for their food, and during monsoons, they swim to the mangrove islands in hordes and stay there for days altogether.

Children must be taught discipline of using communication technology (Comment) (11:38)
By Anil K. Rajvanshi
There is a general refrain from parents that their children are spending too much time with their smartphones -- chatting, SMSing or being on social media. Besides neglecting their studies, parents contend the children are being exposed to bad influences from webosphere. All of this has happened in the last 10-15 years and is being fuelled by the availability of communication technology like smartphones and the internet.

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