1. Himachal Pradesh launches Nutrition Scheme for HIV-Positive Children
Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur on January 22, 2018 launched a state-level nutrition scheme for HIV-positive children.
The nutrition scheme was launched during a campaign organised by the AIDS Control Society of Himachal Pradesh on the occasion of National Youth Day.
The nutrition scheme will provide nutritional supplement and will boost the immunity of over 400 children up to the age of 18. The state will also provide every possible support to these children to enable them to live a normal and healthy life.
Earlier in January 2018, the state government also made it mandatory for every expectant mother to go for an HIV test.
2. Environment minister forms joint working group of departments
Union Environment Minister Harsh Vardhan announced on January 22, 2018 that an empowered joint working group will be formed under him comprising nodal officers from five ministries and departments to synergise efforts for developing technological solutions.
Addressing an inter-ministerial coordination meeting, the minister stressed on the need to break the mindset of "working in silos". The working group will be formed to take decisions on every possible problem for scientific resolution and each of the ministries will nominate its nodal officers. The Minister called it a ‘grand alliance’.
Further, the Minister urged all the ministries and departments concerned to identify commonalities for technological solutions that can be taken to various stakeholders.
The meetings of the joint working group will be held every month and a quarterly meeting will be held at the minister's level.
3. US President Donald Trump signed bill to end government shutdown
US President Donald Trump signed a bill on January 22, 2018 reopening the government, ending a 3-day partial shutdown.
The US Senate voted on January 22 for a short-term spending package that would fund the government until February 8, following a deal being reached between Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell regarding assurances related to immigration.
The House passed the continuing resolution 266-159, with 36 more yes votes than the four-week resolution they passed last week. The House of Representatives also approved the bill.
The partial government shutdown, which began on January 20, coincided with the 1st anniversary of Trump's inauguration as the US President. It came after the Senate failed to pass a funding bill, due to clashes between the Democrats and Republicans over key issues including immigration.
The deadlock ended with a promise by Republicans to debate the future of about 700000 undocumented young immigrants who entered the United States as children.
4. Delhi Governor felicitates National Bravery Award winners
Lt Governor of Delhi, Anil Baijal felicitated children who have been conferred the 'National Bravery Award 2017' at the Raj Niwas on January 22, 2018.
Speaking on the occasion, the Governor said that these children have not only saved the lives of others by showing exemplary courage and strength but also have performed their duty towards humanity.
Overall, 18 children were conferred with the 'National Bravery Award 2017’, among whom seven are girls and rest 11 are boys. Two girls and one boy were given the award posthumously.
The Lt Governor also paid tributes to the parents of the children who laid down their lives to save others.
5. UN agency for Palestinians seeks funds after US suspends aid
The United Nations agency for Palestinian refugees has launched what it is calling an ‘unprecedented’ fund-raising appeal seeking hundreds of millions of dollars in response to the recent suspension of financial aid by the Trump administration.
UNRWA's Commissioner-General, Pierre Krahenbuhl, on January 22, 2018 called last week's US decision ‘abrupt and harmful’. The agency primarily provides education, health and welfare services for more than 5 million refugees and their descendants across the Middle East.
The United States, which is the largest donor to UNRWA, has decided to withhold financial aid worth USD 65 million from the UN agency, blaming the Palestinians for a deadlock in peace efforts in the middle east.