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Andhra to use drone cameras to check red sander smuggling

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Hyderabad: The Andhra Pradesh government is planning to use drone cameras in Rayalaseema region to increase surveillance on red sander smuggling, Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu said on Saturday. Mooting the suggestion during a meeting in Vijayawada to review law and order situation in the state, he said drones cameras or static balloon cameras may be used to keep a vigil on the red sander smuggling. These cameras will use unused (TV) spectrum under TV White Spaces Project.

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The state government in recent months intensified its efforts to check red sander smuggling in the districts bordering Tamil Nadu. It stepped up patrolling by special task force in Seshachalam forests. In April this year, the police gunned down 20 wood cutters in the forests in Chittoor district. The wood cutters from Tamil Nadu were allegedly hired by smugglers operating from that state.

Several smugglers have been arrested and red sander worth crores of rupees was seized in last few months. The arrested smugglers include a Chinese national. Also called red sandalwood, the precious wood is used in traditional medicines and woodcraft across China, Myanmar, Japan and other countries of East Asia. A tonne of red sander fetches Rs.20 lakh to Rs.25 lakh in the international market.

(IANS)

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Andhra Government to Give Free Smartphones to 1.4 Crore Women

1.4 crore women in Andhra to get free smartphones

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The Andhra Pradesh government has decided to give free smartphones to all members of women’s self-help groups in the state to enable them to avail various government services on digital platform.

The state has around 1.4 crore members in Development of Women and Children in Rural Area (DWCRA) groups, popularly known as the women’s self-help groups.

The phones will have Android operating system and will come with a sim card with required speed, unlimited calls, daily 50 SMSes and 1 GB data.

K. Vijayanand, Principal Secretary, Information Technology, Electronics and Communications, on Wednesday said Andhra Pradesh Technology Service will be the nodal agency for procurement of the phones.

A procurement committee will announce guidelines for the same.

OnePlus, smartphone
Smartphone by OnePlus. Flickr

A technical committee will be framing guidelines to distribute the phones.

The Internet is expected to increase the reach of citizen services being provided by the government. He said the move would help bridging the digital divide.

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The government is providing citizen services under various platforms like E-Pragati, Mee Seva, Yuva Nestam and Real Time Governance. There is also a toll-free number 1100 to lodge complaints.

There are already 900 web-based and 100 mobile applications available to provide various services to the people. (IANS)