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New Delhi, 15th Feb (IANS): Union Transport and Shipping Minister Nitin Gadkari on Thursday said the steps taken towards electric mobility in the country marks a new age in the transport sector and a big boost to the agrarian economy.

"This is a start of a new age in transport sector," said Gadkari after inaugurating three electric vehicle charging stations at Niti Aayog, the think-tank of Indian government.

Noting the country spends Rs 7 lakh crore in importing crude oil each year and it is a big problem for the local economy, apart from contributing to high pollution, he advocated bio and electric fuel, for which commercially viable technology is available, as it will bring revolutionary change both in transport and rural economy.

"Uttar Pradesh is the most abundant state in ethanol and its entire transport can run on it. It will create tremendous job opportunities in the farm sector," he said.

Each year, Uttar Pradesh, Haryana and Punjab burn paddy straw aggravating pollution over north India including Delhi and this problem can be solved if the vehicles take to bio-fuel, he said.

"Diversification of agriculture to fuel, power and alternative petroleum products has to happen. Water bottles made from farm products are bio-degradable in three days," he said.

Bio-fuels like ethanol can also solve the problems of unemployment among the youths in Northeast, which produces large amount of bamboos, he said.

As for electric vehicles, Gadkari said the average per kilometre cost for a diesel bus in Mumbai is Rs 110, whereas it is merely Rs 50 for electric buses. Secondly, the GST on petrol and diesel vehicles is 48 per cent, while it is 12 per cent for electric vehicles.

"If professionally managed, the commuting cost for passengers can be halved, pollution can be significantly slashed, import cost can be cut and jobs can be generated," he said.

Citing the example of price of solar power that came down from Rs 16.50 per unit to Rs 2.44 per unit, Gadkari said, "I am sure a time will come when electric car would be cheaper than a petrol car."

He said the first movers in the sector, whether the electric vehicle manufacturers or the charging station industry, would be major gainers.

On being asked about the delay in coming out with a policy for electric mobility in the country, Gadkari said there was no need for one as all departments concerned were taking actions as per the requirement.

Niti Aayog has now taken a decision to have the same charging plug for all electric vehicles from different auto manufacturing companies.

Though Niti Aayog Chairman Amitabh Kant said that it was for the government to take a final call on whether an Electric Vehicle policy would be issued, the minister said, "Technology is always ahead of rules and regulations. There are so many technological innovations happening on a daily basis that it would be a problem to freeze them in a policy."

Kant said the Niti Aayog has planned to replace all its vehicles with electric vehicles within the next four months.

Gadkari also announced that the government has come out with a tender to connect Dhaula Kuan and Manesar in National Capital Region (NCR), a distance of 70 km, with a cable car, and work would commence on it within three months.

"The capital cost for setting up one kilometre of metro is Rs 350 crore. With this it can be done at Rs 50 crore to carry the same number of passengers and if it is Made in India, it can be done in Rs 35 crore," he said.

The electric mobility movement will also give a strong boost to Make in India campaign, he added.


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New Delhi, 13th Feb (IANS): Highlighting a steady recovery of the job market, a report by Naukri.com on Tuesday revealed that online hiring activity registered a 14 per cent growth year-on-year (YoY) in January.

The survey said the Naukri Job Speak index for January at 1,951 recorded a 14 per cent growth from the corresponding month in 2017, with both major urban cities, as well as tier II markets witnessing good YoY growth during the month under review.

According to the job portal's report, some of the key industries to observe growth during the reviewed month were insurance at 73 per cent and auto at 44 per cent.

"Looks like there is a slow and steady revival of the job market. The Job Speak index has shown a YoY growth of 14 per cent in January after a 10 per cent growth in December," said V.Suresh, Chief Sales Officer, Naukri.com.

"Non-IT sectors viz BFSI (banking, financial services, and insurance), auto, engineering and industrial products continue to sustain the momentum gained over the past few months. Having said that, the uncertainty in the market may continue for a few more months or so," he added.

In January 2018, jobs in the oil and gas sector grew by 43 per cent, while jobs in construction and engineering, and the banking and financial services sectors recorded a 41 per cent and 40 per cent growth in hiring respectively, the report pointed out.

"Jobs in industrial products and pharma and biotech went up by 34 per cent and 14 per cent respectively in January 2018 when compared to January 2017," said the report.

"Jobs in BPO sector witnessed a growth of 9 per cent in January 2018 when compared with January 2017, while jobs in IT-software sector slipped by 6 per cent," it added.

Other sectors included banking/insurance -- which grew by 78 per cent -- followed by production/maintenance (up 55 per cent), site engineering jobs (up 43 per cent), marketing and advertising roles (up 19 per cent), sales/BD (up 24 per cent), and BPO/KPO jobs (up 3 per cent).

The report noted that the IT industry went slow by a downfall of 2 per cent during the month under review.

Citywise, hiring activity in Delhi grew by 20 per cent, while Mumbai and Hyderabad saw 18 per cent and 6 per cent growth, respectively.

"Hiring sector in Bengaluru and Chennai remained flat in January 2018 when compared to January 2017. Kolkata saw a growth of 34 per cent," the survey said, adding that the tier II markets in terms of hiring have also performed well.


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Mumbai, 12th Feb (IANS): Global software major Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) on Monday said it has been ranked among the top three employers in the US by the Netherlands-based Top Employers Institute.

"The Institute has also recognised TCS as one of the world's best places to work for the fourth consecutive year," said the city-based tech firm in a statement here.

The Amsterdam-headquartered independent organisation certifies employers the world over for excellence in creating a total work environment for their employees.

The criteria in assessing TCS employee offerings included talent strategy, workforce planning, on-boarding, learning and development, performance management, leadership development, career and succession management, compensation and benefits and company culture.

"As employees are our strong asset, we are committed to enabling their growth and development through programmes to build digital skills, enable career advancement and retain the best talent," said TCS President, North America and Europe, Surya Kant in the statement.

TCS has also been among the top two recruiters of the US and Canadian IT services talent over the past five years.

"Optimal employee conditions ensure that people can develop personally and professionally on their own. Our research concluded thata-TCS provides an outstanding employment environment and offers creative initiatives, from secondary benefits and working conditions, to performance-management programmes," said the Institute Global Business Director Dennis Utter.

As a flagship company of India's Tata group, the $17.6 billion TCS has 390,000 techies across 36 countries worldwide.

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New Delhi, 10th Feb (IANS): The government-run Sexual Harassment Electronic box (SHe-Box) has received 34 complaints from various ministries, 19 from various states, and 25 from private organisations since the online portal was launched seven months ago. The maximum number of grievances have come from the Ministry of Communications.

In reply to an RTI application by IANS, the Ministry of Women and Child Development (WCD) said it was taking action in response to the 77 complaints of sexual harassment by women at their work places.

The portal, launched in July last year to provide single-window access to working women to register complaints related to sexual harassment at work places, was initially limited to only government sector employees. It was however expanded to the private sector from November last year.

Within three months, 25 women working in different private organisations registered sexual harassment complaints.

The WCD Ministry, mandated to run the portal and act on complaints, has received grievances from three of its own employees, according to the RTI reply.

It said eight complaints were received from the Communications Ministry followed by four from the Commerce and Industry Ministry. Three cases each have been received from the ministries of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Defence, Finance and Railways.

Two complaints each have been registered by women working with the ministries of Health, Human Resources Development and Rural Development. One woman in the External Affairs Ministry has also registered a sexual harassment case on the SHe box.

According to the WCD Ministry, women working with different government departments in 13 states have also complained of sexual harassment.

The maximum number of four cases have been received from Kerala, three from Bihar while two are from Telangana. One case each has been registered from Uttar Pradesh, Delhi, Odisha, Maharashtra, Punjab, Jharkhand, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh and Chhattisgarh.

The online portal was launched as part of the Protection of Women from Sexual Harassment at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act to create a safe and secure workplace for women free from sexual harassment.

The registration of online complaints requires the complainant to fill in information like her name, designation, cellphone number, email, Aadhaar number and contact details of the organisation and head of the organisation, as well as the name of the offender.

Complaints filed with the internal committee of these organisations can also be re-routed through this portal.

Once a complaint is submitted, it goes to the Internal Complaint Committee (ICC) concerned or Local Complaint Committee (LCC) constituted under the act. Through this portal, the WCD Ministry as well as complainant can also monitor the status of complaints.

However, a large number of sexual harassment cases at workplaces in India are not reported.

According to a 2017 survey by the Indian National Bar Association, of the 6,047 participants 38 per cent said they had faced harassment at their workplaces but 69 per cent of the respondents did not complain about it.

The main reasons for not reporting the sexual harassment cases include fear of losing jobs, stigma and long-winding procedures in the legal battle for redressal of the complaints.

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New Delhi, 9th Feb (IANS): Hundreds of homeless people staying in government-run night shelters across the capital may soon get jobs if a novel proposal to train and make them employable goes through.

The Delhi Urban Shelter Improvement Board (DUSIB), an agency looking after homeless people in the city, is considering a proposal by an industry lobby to impart skill-based training to the homeless and then refer them for jobs with private organisations, DUSIB CEO Shurbir Singh told IANS.

According to the proposal from the PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PHDCCI), the industry lobby has agreed to conduct a scope study to understand job requirements in the market.

This will be followed by a list of skills which could be imparted to the homeless so that the chances of them landing a job are high.

The PHDCCI would then undertake a study among the homeless to understand their backgrounds and what levels of training they would be able to grasp, according to the proposal.

After this, groups of 25-30 people would be given training in different batches. There are some 12,000 homeless people living in nearly 200 permanent night shelters in Delhi.

The CEO said that, after conducting the training, PHDCCI would recommend the homeless for jobs in various companies under the industry lobby that works on the promotion of industry, trade and entrepreneurship, and has 2,000 direct members and 48,000 indirect members through its affiliate associations.

Singh said this was not the first attempt by the DUSIB to bring homeless people to the mainstream.

In January 2017, the DUSIB had started a programme to give skill development training to homeless people in the night shelters.

Under the programme, more than 200 homeless across the city were given training in electrical works, plumbing and cooking, among others.

"From the last training we found out that it was futile to give training without providing placement," the DUSIB official said.

But the DUSIB and PHDCCI are still looking for funding the job scheme and the answer may lie in Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR).

"We have told them (PHDCCI) to find some funding from industries under CSR. They are yet to respond," a DUSIB official said. "But we are seriously considering the scheme."

A PHDCCI official confirmed the proposal, but said its finer details were still being worked out.

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