SIKKIM BAGS GOLD IN “FUTURE POLICY AWARD 2018”

Future Policy Award 2018 crowns best policies on agroecology and sustainable food systems.
The “100% organic state” Sikkim in India wins Gold. Policies from Brazil, Denmark and Ecuador honoured with Silver Awards.

Hamburg/Rome, 12 October 2018 – The world’s best laws and policies promoting agroecology are awarded the Future Policy Award (FPA) 2018. The “100% organic state” Sikkim, in India,is this year’s winner of the “Oscar for best policies”, beating 51 nominated policies from 25 countries. Policies from Brazil, Denmark and Quito (Ecuador) take home Silver Awards. This year’s award is co-organised by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the World Future Council (WFC) and IFOAM – Organics International.

Gold Prize winner Sikkim is the first organic state in the world. All of its farmland is certified organic. At the same time, Sikkim’s approach reaches beyond organic production and has proven truly transformational for the state and its citizens. Embedded in its design are socioeconomic aspects such as consumption and market expansion, cultural aspects as well as health, education, rural development and sustainable tourism. The policy implemented a phase out of chemical fertilisers and pesticides, and achieved a total ban on sale and use of chemical pesticides in the state.The transition has benefitted more than 66 000 farming families.The Sikkim tourism sector has benefited greatly from the state’s transition to 100 percent organic: the number of tourists increased by over 50 percent between 2014 and 2017. As such, Sikkim sets an excellent example of how other Indian states and countries worldwide can successfully upscale agroecology.

Three Silver Awards are granted to:
• Brazil’s National Policy for Agroecology and Organic Production (PNAPO, 2012):In its first cycle of activities PNAPO invested 364 million Euros. Amongst others, it helped 5,300 municipalities to invest 30% or more of their school feeding budgets in organic and agroecological products purchased from family farmers.
• Denmark’s Organic Action Plan(2011-2020, updated in 2015): As a result of the Action Plan, Denmark has the highest market share of organic products in the world, with almost 80 percent of Danes purchasing organic food.
• Quito’s Participatory Urban Agriculture Programme (AGRUPAR, 2002): With over 3 600 urban gardens growing on 32 hectares and more than 21 000 people trained, AGRUPAR fosters food security, increases incomes, and enhances ecosystem functions.

The Vision Award goes to TEEBAgriFood, an initiative of “The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity” (TEEB) by UN Environment.TEEBAgriFood has developed a comprehensive evaluation framework for food systems that helps decision-makers to compare different policies and the market to value food more accurately.

The three Honourable Mentions of the Future Policy Award, this year go to the Good Food Purchasing Policy of Los Angeles, USA (2012), to the Agriculture Development Programme of Ndiob, Senegal (2017) and to the From Arms to Farms Programme of Kauswagan, the Philippines (2011).

Winners of this year’s Future Policy Award will be celebrated in a ceremony on 15 October 2018 at FAO headquarters during the World Food Week in Rome. A life webcast is available at http://www.fao.org/webcast/home/en/item/4874/icode/and

photos at:https://flic.kr/s/aHskKjojGW

The Future Policy Award 2018 is co-organised by the World Future Council, FAO and IFOAM – Organics International, with the support of Green Cross International, DO-IT – Dutch Organic International Trade and Sekem Group, Egypt.
Statements from the World Future Council, FAO and IFOAM – Organics International:
“By scaling up agroecology, it is possible to tackle malnutrition, social injustice, climate change, and loss of biodiversity. Through effective, holistic policymaking, we can transform our food systems so that they respect people and planet. The 2018 Future Policy Award winners prove that it is feasible – and how. Policymakers across the globe should follow their example and step up similar exemplary political action!” says Alexandra Wandel, Director of the World Future Council.

Maria-Helena Semedo, FAO Deputy Director-General, states:“A transition to sustainable food and agriculture systems is critical to achieving sustainable development, and the 2018 Future Policy Award is unique as it highlights policies that advance such a transition. FAOis proud to honour, along with the World Future Council and IFOAM – Organics International, such leadership and political will.”

“This year’s Future Policy Award honours exceptional policies adopted by political leaders who have decided to act, no longer accepting widespread hunger, poverty or environmental degradation. They are committed to better food and agriculture systems, and have achieved unimaginable change,”notes Louise Luttikholt, Executive Director of IFOAM – Organics International. “One of them is Sikkim’s Chief Minister Pawan Chamling who set an ambitious vision and achieved it:Sikkim became the first organic state in the world –100% Organic is no longer a pipe dream but a reality, serving as an outstanding role model for others to follow.”

Note to editors
More Information about the winning policies can be found here: https://www.worldfuturecouncil.org/future-policy-award-2018…

Follow the 2018 Future Policy Award on Twitter with #FuturePolicyAward or #FPA2018
About the Future Policy Award
The Future Policy Award is the only award which honours policies on an international level. Each year, the World Future Council chooses a topic for the Future Policy Award on which policy progress is particularly urgent. In partnership with FAO and IFOAM – Organics International, the 2018 Future Policy Award will highlight policies that scale up agroecology to contribute to the protection of life and livelihoods of small-scale food producers, ensure sustainable food production systems and implement climate resilient agricultural practices. More information about this year’s Future Policy Award is available at: https://www.worldfuturecouncil.org/2018-agroecology

The World Future Council
The World Future Council (WFC) works to pass on a healthy planet and fair societies to our children and grandchildren. To achieve this, we focus on identifying and spreading effective, future-just policy solutions and promote their implementation worldwide. Jakob von Uexkull, the Founder of the Alternative Nobel Prize, launched the World Future Council in 2007. We are an independent, non-profit organisation under German law and finance our activities from donations.For information on the Future Policy Award, visit:https://www.worldfuturecouncil.org/future-policy-award

For press enquiries, please contact Miriam Petersen, [email protected], +49 40 307 09 14 19.
The Food and Agriculture Organization
The goals of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations(FAO) are to reduce hunger and malnutrition, eliminate poverty through economic and social progress and support sustainable management and utilization of natural resources. FAO leads international efforts to defeat hunger. Serving both developed and developing countries, FAO acts as a neutral forum where all nations meet as equals to negotiate agreements and debate policy. FAO is also a source of knowledge and information. FAO helps developing countries and countries in transition modernize and improve agriculture, forestry and fisheries practices and ensure good nutrition for all. Since the founding in 1945, FAO has focused special attention on developing rural areas, home to 70 percent of the world’s poor and hungry people.
For press enquiries, please contact Tina Farmer, [email protected], +39 06 5705 6846
IFOAM – Organics International
Since 1972, IFOAM – Organics International has occupied an unchallenged position as the only international umbrella organization in the organic world, uniting an enormous diversity of stakeholders contributing to the organic vision. As agent of change, their vision is the broad adoption of truly sustainable agriculture, value chains and consumption in line with the principles of organic agriculture. At the heart of IFOAM – Organics International are about a800 Affiliates in more than 100 countries.
For press enquiries, please contact GáborFigeczky, [email protected], +492289265019, +4915756925021.

SPD Samagra Shiksha Represents HRDD in NEC Meeting at Shillong on Capacity Building Teachers.

October 11, 2018, Shillong: (IPR) A conference of the North East Council (NEC) and British Council was held in the NEC Secretariat on the subject ‘British Council Pilot Project of Capacity Building of Teachers’ which was chaired by NEC Secretary Shri Ram Muivah. The conference was attended by Alan Gemmel OBE, Director British Council, Kh. Siile Anthony, Director/HRD&E, NEC, Sri Joydeep Bordoloi, Head, NE, British Council, Bhim Thatal, Director/Primary Education and State Project Director, Samagra Shiksha along with other representatives of the North-East States.

While addressing the conference, the Secretary, NEC, Shri Ram Muivah appreciated the initiatives taken by the State of Sikkim in education sector and applauded the innovative practices of Sikkim. He also asked the other NE States to learn from Sikkim in educational development and quality innovations.

While addressing the conference , the SPD Bhim Thatal mentioned about the future initiatives of the HRDD and also invited the other NE States to visit our schools. While mentioning about capacity building of teachers, he said that the primary focus of the HRDD is the primary education and capacity building of Primary Teachers is priority. He also mentioned that the KG system introduced in Sikkim is soon being taken as module by the Mordant NCERT for starting g pre primary education in the rest of the country.

He further said that the HRDD will select 100 PRTs from all the districts who will be trained in Gangtok for five days in order to enable them teach English at primary level. From these 100 trained teachers, 50 will be shortlisted as Master Trainers who will further be trained on Training of Trainer lines to enable them train more teachers. In the next phase, capacity building for Mathematics and Science teaching will be taken up.

Chief Secretary Shri Alok Srivastava IAS tours North Sikkim.

Mangan, 6th October (IPR): The Chief Secretary of Sikkim Shri Alok Srivastava IAS who is on a two days tour of North Sikkim visited Mangan today. The Chief Secretary was received by the District Collector North Shri Karma R Bonpo IAS , SDM Mangan and the Head of Departments of the District at Mangan.
The Chief Secretary visited the 1200 MW Teesta Urja Power House at Ringdang where he inspected the powerhouse. At the Power House a power point presentation was made by the Dy.GM Teesta Urja who explained the various features of the power project. The Project which is one of the crown jewels of the State is running since February 2016 generating valuable revenue for the state. The power project is currently generating about 800MW of power and the power is being supplied and traded on the Indian Energy Exchange (IEX). About hundred engineers mostly from the state of Sikkim are currently employed in the project. The power project was built using the state of the art technology and is second largest hydro power project in the country. The electro-mechanical components were mostly imported from the top manufacturers in the world. The power house is entirely located in the rock cavern and is about 200mtrs in length and out 40 mtrs in heights. There are six turbines each of 200 MW capacities for power generation. The Concrete Filled dam for the power project is located at Chungthang and head race tunnel of about 13 kilometers bring the water to the power house.
The Chief Secretary was extremely happy with the state of the art project and expressed his gratitude to the employees of the project for smooth functioning of such an important project. He stated the government will continue to provide support to the power project.
The Chief Secretary also undertook a tour of lower Mangan Bazaar where the recent landslide has caused damages to many buildings. The District Collector North apprised the Chief Secretary that the DPR for the protection of the Mangan town was currently in process with the NDMA. He explained the urgency of taking the interventions to save the town immediately and the need for sanction of the funds from the Ministry of Home Affairs to take the necessary measures. The Chief Secretary assured to take up the matter with NDMA and ensure that timely actions be taken. The Chief Secretary also inspected the landslide areas of Rafong Khola, Lanthey Khola, Nadey, Meyong and Wong Khola which are the troublesome spots on the North Sikkim Highway. The North Sikkim Highway maintained by GREF have seen huge destruction during this monsoons season causing disturbance to the movement of traffic to the border areas of Lachen and Lachung. The Chief Secretary assured to take the matter with the Border Roads Organization for the restoration of the damaged portions of the highways.
The Chief Secretary then proceeded towards Chungthang and will halt at Chaten near Lachen. He will be visiting Gurudongmar lake, Tso Lhamu and the border areas tomorrow.

DC and SP West chairs “Meeting regarding mock exercise on earthquake and disaster preparedness for West District”.

Geyzing, 03 October, 2018 (IPR): As per the directives of Chief Secretary, Government of Sikkim a Meeting regarding mock exercise on earthquake and disaster preparedness for West District was held today here at the conference hall of District Administration Centre, Rabdentse.
The meeting was chaired by District Collector, West, Dr.A.B Karki accompanied by SP,West, Mr. Tenzing Loden Lepcha, ADC(w),DPO (w) and all the departmental heads and representatives.
The exercise will be simulated an earthquake measuring 8.7 on the Richter Scale with intensity 8.9 MSK occurred at 11:45 IST on 10.10.18.
The mock exercise will be conducted simultaneously at 5 selected locations, including hospitals, Geyzing Market areas, schools and major hazardous units to assess and improve the administration’s capacity in mobilising resources and reaching out to the affected communities swiftly.
DC in his brief address informed that the observers from Government of India is deputed for the aforesaid exercise. He urged all the officers to be responsible and work collectively to come out with an effective result.
Mr. Pempa Sherpa,DPO, Disaster Management (West), briefed about the proceedings of the day. Emergency Operation Center at the districts will be immediately activated, assessed the damage, formed rescue teams under Incident Commanders and dispatched them to the respective locations. Rescue drills will be conducted in coordination with various departments, such as Traffic control, Fire , Health, Police, SSB, NYK and all line departments.

Election Department, West Sikkim conducts District Level Debate, Painting and Quiz Competition.

Gyalshing, 3rd October, 2018 (IPR): Under the Electoral Literacy Club Program a ‘District Level Inter College Debate and Inter School Painting Competition’, organized by the Department of Elections, West Sikkim under the aegis of CEO, Election Commission of India was held at the Bhanu Shalig, Gyalshing. The Event was chaired by Dr. A. B. Karki, DC West; Shri. Tushar Nikhare, SDM Gyalshing along with Mrs. Chumsang Palden, DCPO and other officials and dignitaries.
The D.I.E.T. College, Gyalshing; B. Ed. College, Soreng and ITI, Gyalshing emerged as winners in their respective topics for the Debate Competition. Similarly, in the Painting Competition Mukhang Limboo from Bongten Secondary School stood 1st and Lanam Limboo from Gerethang Secondary School stood second in the Junior Category. Nar Singh Rai from Rinchenpong Secondary School stood first followed by Roman Tamang from Reshi Secondary School in the 2nd Position in the Senior Category.
In the District Level Inter School Election Quiz Competition conducted by the 24 Hours Inspired at the same venue, the Khechuperi Senior Secondary School were declared as the district winners and would be representing the West District in the coming State level quiz competition.

Swachh Bharat Mission (Gramin) Sikkim bags two ‘Swachh Bharat Puraskar 2018’ Awards – Sikkim adjudged the ‘Cleanest State’ in the North-East

New Delhi, 2nd October, 2018: (IPR) The Swachh Bharat Mission (Gramin) – Sikkim, under the Rural Management & Development Department added more feathers to the cap by bagging two ‘Swachh Bharat Puraskar 2018’ awards during the Swachh Bharat Diwas celebration and Awards Distribution function organised by the Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation, Government of India at the Pravasi Bharatiya Kendra, New Delhi.

Sikkim was awarded the 1st prize in the ‘Cleanest State’ category for the North-East region. The award was given by the Hon’ble Minister for Drinking Water and Sanitation, Sushree Uma Bharti and was received by Shri Anil Raj Rai, Special Secretary cum Mission Director, Swachh Bharat Mission (Gramin) Sikkim, RM&DD.

Similarly, the East District of Sikkim was awarded the 3rd prize in the ‘Cleanest District’ category for the North-East region. Sushree Urvashi Poudyal, Additional District Collector (Development) – Pakyong, RM&DD received the award on behalf of the East district from the hands of the Hon’ble Minister for Drinking Water and Sanitation, Sushree Uma Bharti.

The awards were conferred to acknowledge the top performers of the ‘Swachh Survekshan Grameen – 2018’,a pan-India survey initiated by the Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation, Government of India to develop ranking of the 680 districts based on their rural sanitation status. The survey was based on a comprehensive set of quantitative and qualitative sanitation (Swachhata) parameters including data from the SBM-G IMIS, district-level surveys of public places like schools, Anganwadis, PHCs, Haat bazaars, Panchayat and citizen’s perception of Swachhata and their recommendations for improvement of the program.

An independent agency hired by the Ministry visited the villages to undertake the survey of public places and obtain citizens’ feedback. As part of the Survekshan, States and Districts were ranked for their sanitation and cleanliness status. The survey was conducted from the August 1st to 31st, 2018.

MODIFICATION OF CMSS GUIDELINES from Industries Department

With a view to make the Chief Minister’s Startup Scheme more effective towards achieving its objectives and providing self employment opportunities and developing entrepreneurship in the State, the following amendments have been made to the scheme guidelines with the approval of the State Government.
1. Uniform rate of 35% of the bankable projects as front ended financial assistance as against the twin rate of 25% & 35%.
2. Beneficiaries’ upper age relaxed from 40 years to 45 years.
3. In addition to the recognized public sector banks and financial institutions, private sector banks and co-operative banks having valid license issued by the RBI and State Bank of Sikkim can finance projects under CMSS.
4. For the East and North Districts DIC(East/North) at Udyog Bhawan, Tadong will be issuing and receiving CMSS forms while for the South and West Districts DIC(South/West) Jorethang will be issuing and receiving CMSS forms. Forms can also be downloaded from the government website.

3 Days Refresher Course in Journalism commenced at Information and Public Relations Department, Soochna Bhawan

Gangtok, Sept 17th:(IPR) The 3 Days Refresher Course in Journalism is underway at the Information and Public Relations Department, Soochna Bhawan from today. The Hon’ble Minister, IPR Shri A.K. Ghatani is present as the Chief Guest for the function.

The 3 Days Refresher Course is open for all media persons who are interested in participating and the Resource Persons for the workshop are Shri S. Sur, President, Press Club of Kolkata and Shri M. Chatterjee, Director, IIMC Orissa.

Samajik Adhikarita Shivir

Namchi, 30th May(IPR): Mr. Krishan Pal Gurjar, Union Minister of State for Social Justice and Empowerment, Government of India, attended ‘Samajik Adhikarita Shivir’ a mega distribution free of cost camp which includes allocation of Assistive Aids and Appliances under Rashtriya Vayoshri Yojana (RVY) to senior citizens under BPL category and to Divyangjan under ADIP scheme of Government of India (GoI) at Community Hall, today. The camp organized by Artificial Limbs, Manufacturing Corporation of India (ALIMCO), Kanpur working under the aegis of Department of Empowerment of person with disability (Divyangjan), Ministry of SJ&E, GoI in close association with Department of Social Welfare, Govt of Sikkim and South District Administration had the attendance of Chairman, (SC, Welfare Board) Mr. Madan Cintury, Zilla Adhakshya (South)Ms. Farwanti Tamang, Upa-Adhakshya (South) Mr. Bhim Badhadur Lakhe, Dy Manager (ALIMCO) Mr. S. Sengupta alongside HoDs and a large number of senior citizens.

At, the onset DC (South) Mr. Prabhakar Verma informed that the total number of 184 ADIP and 1,020 RVY beneficiaries comprising of differently abled persons and senior citizens will receive the appliances. He also added that the distributed materials included the various kinds of assisted living devices namely that of walking stick, elbow crutches, walker crutches, wheel chairs, hearing devices, spectacles and other smart equipment.

Addressing, the gathering Union Minister of State for Social Justice and Empowerment, GoI Mr. Krishan Pal Gurjar, informed about the aim and objective of the camp and shared that this distribution camp is the maiden camp organized in Sikkim under RVY. He updated that the daily living devices of different categories regarding age related infirmities valuing over Rs. 1 crore will be allocated amongst pre identified beneficiaries from South Sikkim. Mr. Gurjar emphasised the camp will immensy assist in positively transforming the lifes of the differently able and senior citizens into that of a self-reliant and self-sufficient person. Mr. Gurjar articulated that the GoI is assiduously focused on elevating the lifes of the senior citizens and that of the differently able person and updated that mass public places in the country are being converted into a barrier-free disabled friendly spaces. He also urged the South District Administration to submit a list of children’s names who are in need of cochlear implant and that the GoI will do the needful in procurement of the implants. Mr. Gurjar also enumerated the various benefits laid down by GoI for the advantage of differently able namely that of reservation in jobs, providing of universal I-card and many more services.

Speaking, during the occasion Joint Secretary MoSJE, GoI Mr. Surendra Singh Meena spoke in detail about the Samajik Adhikarita Shivir and it’s initiation from the year 2017 onwards. Mr. Meena highlighted about the growing population of senior citizens in our country and underlined that they are extremely vulnerable on account of suffering from disabilities, diseases and terminal illness. As, such the Government of India has formulated a variety of schemes for the upliftment of senior citizens, thereby enabling them to live a life of dignity. In addition, Mr. Meena propeled the senior citizens of south sikkim to aim for National Award ‘Vayoshreshtha Samman’ which is given to eminent senior citizens and institutions in recognition of their services towards the cause of elderly persons.

It maybe mentioned that the identified beneficiaries of the camp at Community Hall were registered during the assessment camp held by ALIMCO at various locations of South Sikkim during the month of Feb, 2018. A total number of 945 wheelchairs, 790 BTE Hearing Aids, 979 Walking Sticks, 400 Spectacles, 114 Artificial Dentures assisted living devices were distributed to Senior Citizens under RVY. Likewise, a total number of 50 wheelchairs, 48 crutches, 32 walking Sticks, 202 BTE Hearing Aids, 14 MSIED Kits, 02 CP Chairs, 01 Braille Cane, Braille Kit, 13 Rolator, 05 Smart Phone, 01 Daisy Player and 03 Smart Cane were disbursed to divyangjan under ADIP scheme.