ITCC Newsletter Vol. 1 – July 2021

July 24, 2021

Click here to view: Newsletter Vol. 1 – July 2021

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WEEKLY INDIAN ECONOMIC & COMMERCIAL REPORT (27th July-2nd August 2020)

August 3, 2020

Source: IBEF News Letter Kashmiri saffron gets GI tag 27.07.2020 Kashmir Valley’s Saffron received the geographical indication (GI) certification from the central Government in a boost to the home-grown spice. This is expected to raise the Saffron prices in the international markets. Jammu & Kashmir’s Lieutenant Governor (L-G), Mr Girish Chandra Murmu said, “This is the first major step to put Kashmir Saffron on the world map, thanks to the GI tag. The recognition would help Kashmir Saffron to acquire more prominence in the export market and would help the farmers get the best remunerative price”. The L-G also congratulated Mr Altaf Aijaz Andrabi, director of agriculture, J&K, for his relentless pursuit for the GI tag for the homegrown Kashmiri spice. He added that this move will aid in restoration of Kashmir’s saffron’s pristine glory which has been a top priority for both the union territory (UT) administration and the Central government. The saffron industry will be benefited by the inauguration of the state-of-the-art Spice Park at Pampore in south Kashmir in August under the National Saffron Mission (NSM). Mr Navin K. Choudhary, principal secretary, agriculture production department, J&K, said, “GI certification establishes specific geographical origin and certifies certain unique qualities of the product. GI certification enables those who have the right to use the sign in order to prevent a third party from using the sign. The GI certification would also stop the prevalent adulteration of Kashmir Saffron and the authenticated spice would fetch a much better price”. He added that Kashmir Saffron is the only one spice in the world grown at an altitude of 1,600 metres, making it a one-of-a-kind variant that is known for its unique characteristics such as natural deep-red colour, aroma, bitter flavor, etc. Mr Choudhary further said that the sprinkler irrigation system is being installed in saffron fields as per L-G’s instructions and is expected to be completed in the next two months. Railways to ensure its goods and services procurements through Government e-Market GeM with integration of Railway Digital Supply Chain with GeM. Railway procures goods and services more than Rs 70000 crore annually 27.07.2020 Minister of Railways and Commerce & Industry Mr Piyush Goyal reviewed the steps to promote Make in India products in procurement process of Indian Railways as well as Government of India.  During the meeting, Shri Piyush Goyal urged to take measures to generate confidence in industry of corruption free and transparent procurement environment on Indian Railways. While reviewing the steps to promote Make in India products in procurement process, it was emphasised to increase the participation of local vendors in procurement process. It was also decided to that local content clause in the procurement should be such that we may get more bids from local vendors/suppliers. This would also give a boost to mission Atma Nirbhar Bharat. Active support of DPIIT was sought to make suitable policy revisions, if required, to facilitate the efforts of Indian Railways in this direction. It was felt that encouragement needs to be given to such vendors who can supply higher locally manufactured content. It was also suggested to create a FAQ […]

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WEEKLY INDIAN ECONOMIC & COMMERCIAL REPORT (20th July-26th July 2020)

August 3, 2020

Source: IBEF News Letter Sowing area of Kharif crops 21.2 per cent more compared to last year 20.07.2020 As on 16.07.2020, actual rainfall received in the country is 338.3 mm against normal of 308.4 mm i.e. departure of (+) 10 per cent during the period from 01.06.2020 to 16.07.2020. As on 16.07.2020 as per report of CWC, the live water storage available in 123 reservoirs in the country is 150 per cent of live storage of corresponding period of last year and 133 per cent of storage of average of last ten years. As on 17.07.2020, total kharif crops have been sown on 691.86 lakh ha area against 570.86 lakh ha area during the corresponding period of last year, thus increase in area coverage by 21.20 per cent compared to last year in the country. The sowing area coverage under Kharif crops is as follows: Farmers have sown Rice on 168.47 lakh ha against 142.06 lakh ha area last year i.e. increase in area coverage by 18.59 per cent, Pulses on 81.66 lakh ha against 61.70 lakh ha area last year i.e. increase in area coverage by 32.35 per cent, Coverage of Coarse Cereals reported on 115.60 lakh ha area against 103.00 lakh ha area last year i.e. increase in area coverage by 12.23 per cent, Oilseeds 154.95 lakh ha area against 110.09 lakh ha area last year i.e. area coverage increased by 40.75 per cent, Sugarcane on 51.29 lakh ha area against 50.82 lakh ha area last year i.e. increase in area coverage by 0.92 per cent Under Cotton, area coverage reported on 113.01 lakh ha area against 96.35 lakh ha area last year i.e. increase in area coverage by 17.28 per cent and In case of Jute and Mesta, on 6.88 lakh ha area against 6.84 lakh ha area last year i.e. increase in area coverage by 0.70 per cent reported in the country. Mobile App of PM SVANidhi launched to bring Microcredit facility for street vendors at their door steps 20.07.2020 Mr Durga Shanker Mishra, Secretary, Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs launched the Mobile Application of PM Street Vendor’s AtmaNirbhar Nidhi (PM SVANidhi) here today. This App aims to provide user friendly digital interface for Lending Institutions (LIs) and their field functionaries for sourcing and processing loan applications of street vendors under the Scheme. The launch event was organised through a video conference in which, besides senior officials from the Ministry, Principal Secretaries dealing with Urban Development Department and other officials from the States and UTs participated. PM SVANidhi Mobile App is a step towards boosting the use of digital technology and will enable field functionaries of LIs like Banking Correspondents (BCs) and Agents of Non-Banking Financial Companies (NBFCs)/ Micro-Finance Institutions (MFIs), who have proximity with the street vendors, to ensure maximum coverage of the Scheme. It is believed that launch of Mobile App will give impetus to the implementation strategy of the Scheme besides promoting paper-less digital accessing of micro-credit facilities by the Street Vendors. Ministry has already launched the Web Portal on June 29, 2020. This App has all the features similar to the Web […]

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WEEKLY INDIAN ECONOMIC & COMMERCIAL REPORT (13th July-19th July 2020)

July 21, 2020

Source: IBEF News Letter Aatma Nirbhar Bharat Package – Progress So Far 13.07.2020 Hon’ble Prime Minister Mr Narendra Modi on May 12, 2020 announced the Special economic and comprehensive package of Rs 20 lakh crore (US$ 283.73 billion) – equivalent to 10 per cent of India’s GDP – to fight COVID-19 pandemic in India. He gave a clarion call for Aatma Nirbhar Bharat or Self-Reliant India Movement. He also outlined five pillars of Aatma Nirbhar Bharat – Economy, Infrastructure, System, Vibrant Demography and Demand. Following the call of the Hon’ble Prime Minister, Minister for Finance and Corporate Affairs Ms Nirmala Sitharaman laid down the details of the Aatma Nirbhar Bharat Package in a string of press conferences from 13th May to 17th May 2020. The Ministries of Finance and Corporate Affairs have immediately started implementation of the announcements related to the Economic Package under Aatma Nirbhar Bharat Abhiyaan. Regular reviews and monitoring of the implementation of economic package is being overseen by the Finance Minister personally. In the latest review taken by Ms Nirmala Sitharaman the following progress has been reported so far: Global tenders will be disallowed in Government procurement tenders up to Rs 200 crore (US$ 28.37 million) Giving a major relief to the local MSMEs, Department of Expenditure has amended present Rule 161 (iv) of General Financial Rules, 2017 and GFR Rules relating to Global Tenders. Now, no Global Tender Enquiry (GTE) shall be invited for tenders up to Rs 200 crore (US$ 28.37 million), unless prior approval is obtained from Cabinet Secretariat. Relief to Contractors It was announced by the Finance Minister that all central agencies like Railways, Ministry of Road Transport and Highways and CPWD will give extension of up to 6 months for completion of contractual obligations, including in respect of EPC and concession agreements. In this regard, Department of Expenditure has issued instructions that (due to COVID-19 pandemic) on the invocation of Force Majeure Clause (FMC), contract period may be extended for a period not less than three months and not more than six months without imposition of any cost or penalty on the contractor/concessionaire. Instructions were also issued to return the value of performance security to the contractor/ suppliers proportional to the supplies made/ contract work completed to the total contract value. The same is being implemented by various Departments/Ministries. Supporting State Governments The Finance Minister announced that the Centre has decided to accede to the request and increase borrowing limits of States from 3 per cent to 5 per cent, for 2020-21 only in view of the unprecedented situation. This will give States extra resources of Rs 4.28 lakh crore (US$ 60.72 billion). In an effort to support the financial position of the State Governments presently suffering from stress on account of revenue losses due to lock down, Department of Expenditure issued a communication to all the State Governments for additional Borrowing of 2 per cent of projected GSDP to the States in 2020-21 subject to implementation of specific State Level Reforms. Rs 3 lakh crore (US$ 42.56 billion) Collateral-free Automatic Loans for Businesses, including MSMEs To provide relief to the business, additional […]

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WEEKLY INDIAN ECONOMIC & COMMERCIAL REPORT (6th July-12th July 2020)

July 13, 2020

Source: IBEF News Letter Cabinet approves developing of Affordable rental housing Complexes for urban migrants / poor 09.07.2020 The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi has given its approval for developing of Affordable Rental Housing Complexes (AHRCs) for urban migrants/poor as a sub-scheme under Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana – Urban (PMAY – U) by: existing vacant government funded housing complexes will be converted in ARHCs through Concession Agreements for 25 years. Concessionaire will make the complexes liveable by repair/retrofit and maintenance of rooms and filling up infrastructure gaps like water, sewer/ septage, sanitation, road etc. States/UTs will select concessionaire through transparent bidding. Complexes will revert to ULB after 25 years to restart next cycle like earlier or run on their own. special incentives like use permission, 50 per cent additional FAR/FSI, concessional loan at priority sector lending rate, tax reliefs at par with affordable housing etc. will be offered to private/ public entities to develop ARHCs on their own available vacant land for 25 years. A large part of workforce in manufacturing industries, service providers in hospitality, health, domestic/commercial establishments, and construction or other sectors, labourers, students etc. who come from rural areas or small towns seeking better opportunities will be the target beneficiary under ARHCs. An expenditure of Rs 600 crore (US$ 85.12 million) is estimated in the form of Technology Innovation Grant which will be released for projects using identified innovative technologies for construction. Approximately, three lakh beneficiaries will be covered initially under ARHCs. ARHCs will create new ecosystem in urban areas making housing available at affordable rent close to the place of work. Investment under ARHCs is expected to create new job opportunities. ARHCs will cut down unnecessary travel, congestion, and pollution. Government funded vacant housing stock will be converted into ARHCs for economically productive use. The scheme would create a conducive environment for Entities to develop AHRCs on their own vacant land which will enable new investment opportunities and promote entrepreneurship in rental housing sector. Background: Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA) has initiated an Affordable Rental Housing Complexes (ARHCs) for urban migrants/poor as a sub-scheme under Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (Urban). The scheme was announced by the Hon’ble Finance Minister on 14 May 2020. This scheme seeks to fulfill the vision of ‘AtmaNirbhar Bharat’. COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in massive reverse migration of workers/ urban poor in the country who come from rural areas or small towns for seeking better employment opportunities in urban areas. Usually, these migrants live in slums, informal/ unauthorized colonies, or peri-urban areas to save rental charges. They spend lot of time on roads by walking/ cycling to workplaces, risking their lives to cut on the expenses. Cabinet approves extension of time limit for availing the benefits of “Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana” for Ujjwala beneficiaries by three months w.e.f. 01.07.2020 The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi has approved the proposal of Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas for extension of time limit by three months w.e.f. 01.07.2020 for availing the benefits of “Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana” for Ujjwala beneficiaries The Government had […]

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WEEKLY INDIAN ECONOMIC & COMMERCIAL REPORT (29TH JUNE-5TH JULY 2020)

July 10, 2020

Source: IBEF News Letter Estimated cost for distribution of food grains (Rice and Wheat) and pulses under Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Ann Yojana during April – November 2020 is around Rs 1,48,938 crore 02.07.2020 Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi had announced the extension of Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Ann Yojana till the end of November 2020. He said that the PMGKAY scheme is extended from July till the end of November 2020. During this five-month period, more than 80 crore people will be provided 5 kg free wheat/rice per month along with 1 kg free whole chana to each family per month. The Department of Food and PD has worked out estimated cost under TPDS @ 5 Kg per person per month for three months i.e. April-June 2020 would entail an estimated subsidy of Rs 44,131 crore (US$ 6.26 billion) taking the estimated Economic Cost of Rs 37,267.60 (US$ 528.69)/MT for rice and Rs 26,838.40 (US$ 380.74)/MT for wheat (as per BE 2020-2021). Further, while under NFSA, the expenditure towards intra state transportation and handling charges for movement from FCI depots to Fair Price Shops (FPSs) as also dealer’s margin etc. is shared between Govt. of India and States/UTs as per the sharing pattern and norms for expenditure on this account as per rules framed under NFSA. As Govt. of India is bearing the entire expenditure towards this Scheme, an expenditure of Rs 1,930 crore (US$ 273.80 million) would be required to be met towards transportation and handling and FPS dealers’ margins etc. by Government of India as per the existing norms in this regard under NFSA. ln view of the above, the total estimated expenditure to be borne by Government of India towards food grain subsidy and expenditure on account intra state transportation, dealer’s margin including additional dealer’s margin towards use of ePOS would be Rs 46,061 crore (US$ 6.53 billion). On the basis of above, an estimated cost of 32 million tonne (12 Million Tonne for April-June 2020 and 20 LMT for July-November 2020) for distribution of food grains (Rice and Wheat) from April to November 2020 will be approx. Rs 1,22,829 crore (US$ 17.43 billion). As per Department of Consumer Affairs note, the estimated expenditure towards distribution of pulses is Rs 5,000 crore (US$ 709.32 million) for the period April-June 2020. Accordingly, the estimated expenditure for distribution of pulses during the period April-November 2020 will be Rs 11,800 crore (US$ 1.67 billion) approx. In addition to above, the estimated cost for distribution of food grains to migrant labours for the period of two months is Rs 3,109.52 crore (US$ 441.13 million). The foregone cost of Central Issue Price for food grains which comes to approximately Rs 1,400 crore (US$ 198.61 million) per month entails an expenditure of approximately Rs 11,200 crore (US$ 1.59 billion). Thus, the estimated cost for distribution of food grains (Rice and Wheat) and pulses will be Rs 1,48,938 crore (US$ 21.13 billion) approx. GST Revenue collection for June 2020; Rs 90,917 crore gross GST revenue collected in the month of June 02.07.2020 The gross GST revenue collected in the month of June 2020, […]

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WEEKLY INDIAN ECONOMIC & COMMERCIAL REPORT (22nd- 28th June 2020)

July 10, 2020

Weekly Indian Economic & Commercial Report (22nd – 28th June, 2020) Source: IBEF News Letter PM addresses nation on International Day of Yoga; Yoga Day is a day of solidarity and universal brotherhood, says PM; Yoga promotes family bonding: PM 22.06.2020 The Prime Minister, Mr Narendra Modi, addressed the nation today on the occasion of International Day of Yoga via video conference. Prime Minister said, International Yoga Day is a day of solidarity. This is the day of universal brotherhood. Due to COVID-19 global health emergency, this year International Yoga Day is being observed through the electronic and digital platform. Prime Minister said, People are practising Yoga at their homes with their entire families. He said, Yoga has brought us together. The Huge participation of people in ‘My Life – My Yoga’ video blogging competition from across the globe reflects the growing popularity of yoga, he said. Today, all of us should stay away from large gathering and practice yoga at home with our families. This year’s theme is ‘Yoga at Home and Yoga with Family’. Yoga promotes family bonding as children, youngsters, elders in family come together to practise yoga, there is a flow of positive energy in home. Yoga also promotes emotional stability, PM added. “Yoga boosts immune system of the body. You must include Pranayama in your daily life. Pranayama Yoga or breathing exercises strengthens our respiratory system. It is more relevant in the current times as it is the respiratory system of the body that is most adversely affected by the COVID-19 virus”, Prime Minister said. Prime Minister said, yoga has emerged as a force for unity. It deepens the bonds of humanity as it does not discriminate. It goes beyond race, colour, gender, faith, and nations. Anybody can embrace Yoga. If we can fine tune our chords of health and hope, the day is not far away when world will witness the success of healthy and happy humanity. Yoga can help us make this happen. “As conscious citizens, we will move forward as a family and society in unison. We will try to make ‘Yoga at home and Yoga with family’ a part of our lives. We will surely succeed, we will surely win”, Prime Minister added. NCERT launches Online Yoga Quiz Competition to promote integration of Yoga in school curriculum 22.06.2020 Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) through National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) has undertaken multi-dimensional initiatives to promote integration of Yoga in school curriculum. NCERT has developed textual materials on Yoga for Healthy Living for Upper Primary to Secondary Stages and has been organising Yoga Olympiad since 2016. In COVID-19 situation children are being guided by their teachers and parents at home to do yogic practices along with physical exercises based on Alternative Academic Calendar developed for different stages of school education. But due to the outbreak of Corona pandemic, it is difficult to organise Yoga Olympiad this year. To enable students to learn at home and be safe, Union Human Resource Development Minister Shri Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’ through social media launched an Online Yoga Quiz Competition organised by NCERT. Speaking on the occasion Union HRD Minister said that the objective of this Competition is to create awareness and to motivate children to acquire comprehensive information from authentic sources on different yogic practices. The Minister said that the competition aims at […]

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ITCC Newsletter Vol. 6 – July 2020

July 9, 2020

Check out ITCC Newsletter Click here to view>> Or Click here to Download>>  

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WEEKLY INDIAN ECONOMIC & COMMERCIAL REPORT (15th – 21st June 2020)

June 23, 2020

Weekly Indian Economic & Commercial Report ( 15th – 21st June, 2020) Source: IBEF News Letter  NHAI becomes first construction sector organisation to go ‘Fully Digital’ 15.06.2020 As one of the biggest reform, the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) under Ministry of Road Transport and Highways has gone ‘Fully Digital’, with the launch of unique cloud based and Artificial Intelligence powered Big Data Analytics platform – Data Lake and Project Management Software. The entire project management workflow of NHAI is transformed from manual to online portal based, wherein the complete project execution operations including ‘workflow with timeline’ and ‘alert mechanism’ have been configured. All project documentation, contractual decisions and approvals are now being done through portal only.With advance analytics, the Data Lake software will forecast the delays, likely disputes and will give advance alerts. Thus, apart from expediting the decision making, it will also facilitate in taking correct and timely decisions as the system is likely to predict financial impacts of different alternatives based on the historical data. This will reduce a lot of disputes. NHAI has a history of having large number of arbitration cases pending with huge number of claims and counter claims. Majority of the disputes are generic in nature like delay in handing over of encumbrance free site, shifting of utilities, idling charges of plant, machinery, equipment, manpower and delay in decisions etc. These disputes can be minimized as the Data Lake software has provisions to keep track and check on all these constraints and will ensure work is carried out within the deadlines in a transparent manner. As all processes are going to be portal-based, decision-making is going to be faster and will eventually diminish chances of litigation in future. The complete project documents and correspondences will be stored in Digital format in the cloud-based ‘Data Lake’ linked with GIS tagging and Unique Project ID, so that the project data can be easily retrieved as and when required from any location. NHAI’s all contractors/ concessionaires/consultants/Authority Engineers (AE)/ Independent Engineers (IE) and Project Directors (PDs)/ Regional Officers (ROs) have already started using it extensively. NHAI’s e-Office module is also integrated in the system so that all correspondences can flow digitally in a secured manner from field units to HQ seamlessly. In the current COVID-19 pandemic scenario, when most of the organizations are facing serious challenges in working, NHAI employees are continuing their works undeterred and happily without any fear of physical contacts and touching of physical files.  Rather, lockdown period was used by NHAI to train its employees about using Data Lake. The Data Lake will bring revolutionary changes to NHAI with benefits like No delays, Quick decision making, No question of missing records, Work from anywhere/anytime. It will enhance transparency, as all officers and stakeholders, connected with the project can see what is going on real time basis which will amount to concurrent performance audit by the seniors. Aarogyapath, a web-based solution for the healthcare supply chain that provides real-time availability of critical supplies launched 15.06.2020 A CSIR National Healthcare Supply Chain Portal that aims to provide real-time availability of critical healthcare supplies https://www.aarogyapath.in has been launched on June […]

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WEEKLY INDIAN ECONOMIC & COMMERCIAL REPORT (8th – 14th June 2020)

June 23, 2020

Weekly Indian Economic & Commercial Report ( 8th – 14th June, 2020) Source: IBEF News Letter  Awareness and not Anxiety is the key to fighting COVID-19: DrJitendra Singh; Launches COVID BEEP, India’s first indigenous, cost effective, wireless physiological parameters monitoring system for COVID-19 patients 08.06.2020 Union Minister of State (I/C) for Development of North Eastern Region and Minister of State in Prime Minister’s office, Dr Jitendra Singh said here today that awareness and not anxiety, is the key to fight COVID-19 pandemic. Launching COVID BEEP (Continuous Oxygenation & Vital Information Detection Biomed ECIL ESIC Pod), India’s first indigenous, cost effective, wireless physiological parameters monitoring system for COVID-19 patients, developed by ESIC Medical College Hyderabad in collaboration with IIT Hyderabad and Department Of Atomic Energy, he stressed on the importance of prevention and awareness in dealing with this pandemic effectively, now that the process of unlock has started in a phased manner after an effective and timely lockdown for close to two months. Lauding the efforts of ESIC Medical College Hyderabad, which has come up with yet another innovation in collaboration with eminent institutes like IIT Hyderabad, ECIL, Hyderabad and TIFR, Hyderabad for the welfare of Insured Persons during the present COVID-19 crisis adding to its long list of devices, Dr Singh said that the COVID BEEP is a perfect example of how synergy amongst the reputed institutes of India can offer solutions to most of the challenges faced by the country with minimum cost and thereby make the country Atmanirbhar in true sense. Dr Singh also said that COVID BEEP would emerge as an effective antidote to the original COVID; the pandemic which the entire world is currently grappling with. The latest version of COVID BEEP has incorporated the following: 1. NIBP monitoring: Affected aged people have the highest death rates in COVID-19. Hence, NIBP monitoring becomes imperative in this context. 2. ECG monitoring: The drugs used as prophylaxis and /or treatment like Hydroxychloroquine and Azithromycin etc. have effects on heart and hence the importance of ECG monitoring. 3. The Respiratory Rate: Is calculated by Bio Impedance method. COVID BEEP will greatly reduce the transmission risk as well as help save resources like PPEs. Dr Singh appreciated the work of Department of Atomic Energy, under which ECIL falls, in developing solutions to many health-related issues. Contrary to the popular perception, Department of Atomic Energy is actively involved in promoting the benevolent use of nuclear energy for the greater welfare of mankind. Be it in the field of generating electricity, augmenting agricultural produce, food preservation or administering the much renowned oncology centre by the name TMC in Mumbai, the department of atomic energy has always risen to the occasion to stand by the country in its hour of need. The development of COVID BEEP is another step in the same direction. Prior to Dr Singh, Minister of State for Home Affairs, Sh. G Kishan Reddy, Secretary Department of Atomic Energy, Mr K N Vyas, Dean ESIC Medical College, Hyderabad, Prof Srinivas, Chairman and Managing Director ECIL, Hyderabad, Rear Admiral Sanjay Chaubey (Retd.) also spoke on the occasion underlining the importance of such inventions in the present context. IASST develops an artificial intelligenc–based computer diagnosis framework […]

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