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Government is likely to set up team to improve India’s innovation ranking

In the ninth Global Innovation Index report in 2016, India has improved its ranking by 15 places over last year, following five previous years of decline in position

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Representational Image. Image source: Wikimedia Commons

New Delhi, August 19, 2016: On Friday, the government announced that a team would be set up to advise on how to further improve India’s ranking in the global index of countries in the sphere of innovations.

“I am announcing that from the Department (of Commerce) a team would be formed that would look at repositioning India in the sphere of innovations,” Commerce Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said here, releasing the Global Innovation Index 2016 Report at an event hosted by jointly by the Niti Aayog, the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion and industry chamber CII.

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“This team, which will include members from both government and outside, will not reinvent the wheel, but will go into the report, identify challenges and weaknesses to India’s innovation and what the government can do where it should step in and where it should step back and away,” Sitharaman said.

Global Innovation Index. Image source: spicyip.com
Global Innovation Index. Image source: spicyip.com

In the ninth Global Innovation Index report this year, in 2016, India has improved its ranking by 15 places over last year, following five previous years of decline in position.

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“I commit myself to the government’s assistance and facilitation to improve India’s innovation ranking next year,” the minister said, adding the composition of the committee would be announced in a few days. (IANS)

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Report Claims, As Many As 1 Billion Indians Live in Areas of Water Scarcity

The report also highlighted that India uses the largest amount of groundwater -- 24 per cent of the global total and the country is the third largest exporter of groundwater -- 12 per cent of the global total.

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Global groundwater depletion - where the amount of water taken from aquifers exceeds the amount that is restored naturally - increased by 22 per cent between 2000 and 2010, said the report, adding that India's rate of groundwater depletion increased by 23 per cent during the same period. Pixabay

As many as one billion people in India live in areas of physical water scarcity, of which 600 million are in areas of high to extreme water stress, according to a new report.

Globally, close to four billion people live in water-scarce areas, where, for at least part of the year, demand exceeds supply, said the report by non-profit organisation WaterAid.

This number is expected to go up to five billion by 2050, said the report titled “Beneath the Surface: The State of the World’s Water 2019”, released to mark World Water Day on March 22.

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Pure water droplet. Pixabay

Physical water scarcity is getting worse, exacerbated by growing demand on water resources and and by climate and population changes.

By 2040 it is predicted that 33 countries are likely to face extremely high water stress – including 15 in the Middle East, most of Northern Africa, Pakistan, Turkey, Afghanistan and Spain. Many – including India, China, Southern Africa, USA and Australia – will face high water stress.

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Globally, close to four billion people live in water-scarce areas, where, for at least part of the year, demand exceeds supply, said the report by non-profit organisation WaterAid. Pixabay

Global groundwater depletion – where the amount of water taken from aquifers exceeds the amount that is restored naturally – increased by 22 per cent between 2000 and 2010, said the report, adding that India’s rate of groundwater depletion increased by 23 per cent during the same period.

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The report also highlighted that India uses the largest amount of groundwater — 24 per cent of the global total and the country is the third largest exporter of groundwater — 12 per cent of the global total.

The WaterAid report warned that food and clothing imported by wealthy Western countries are making it harder for many poor and marginalised communities to get a daily clean water supply as high-income countries buy products with considerable “water footprints” – the amount of water used in production — from water-scarce countries. (IANS)