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Kazakhstan opens consulate in Chennai

Kazakhstan has opened its honorary consulate in Chennai. The consulate will cover the states of Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Kerala. It will be headed by well-known businessman Suraj Shantakumar. This year marks the 25th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between India and Kazakhstan.

Kazakhstan has expressed confidence that the establishment of the consulate in Chennai, which is a major industrial centre would promote the potential for economic cooperation in a number of areas like IT industry, engineering, tourism, transport infrastructure, as well as agricultural production.

Background

Among the countries that constituted former USSR, Kazakhstan has emerged as the second largest economic partner for India. Kazakhstan is natural resources, minerals, oil and gas and chemical products. It is the largest exporter of Uranium to India. The prospectus of cooperation looms large in several areas. Recently, there was a meeting between the special working groups on textiles from the two countries in Kazakhstan. The bilateral trade between the two countries was around 618 million USD in 2016. India exports pharmaceuticals, tea, tobacco, and engineering equipment to Kazakhstan and imports oil products, metals and natural minerals from that country.

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J Jayalalithaa launches first phase of Chennai Metro

First phase of Chennai Metro service was inaugurated by Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa after she flagged off inaugural train.

The first phase of Metro service covers the 10-km overhead (elevated) stretch. It connects Alandur in south Chennai to Koyabedu in the north.

The metro service will bear capacity of 1276 passengers with four coaches. It will cover seven stations in the stretch. They are Koyambedu, Arumbakkam, Vadapalani, Chennai Mofussil Bus Terminus, Ashok Nagar, Ekkattuthangal.

The Corridor 2 or second phase of this metro connecting Chennai Central and St. Thomas Mount is will be ready by end 2015. The whole project is implemented by Chennai Metro Rail Limited (CMRL). It was approved by then Congress-led UPA government in 2009.

With launching of this Metro service, Chennai became seventh city in India to have metro service. Other 6 cities are Delhi, Mumbai, Gurgaon, Bangalore, Kolkata and Jaipur.

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Government launches Migrant Resource Centre in Chennai

Migrant Resource Centre (MRC) was set up in Chennai by the Union Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs (MOIA) and Tamil Nadu state government.

The MRC will provide migrants and overseas Indian workers with information, advice, counseling and guidance on all aspects of overseas employment.

It will include legal and regulatory requirements apart from documentation and policies, procedures, problems faced while working aboard by migrants and workers.

Following are support functions of MRCs

  • Dissemination of information on safe and legal migration.
  • Dissemination of information regarding status of recruiting agents along with other service providers.
  • Registration and response to complaints and grievances within the redressal forum of MOIA.
  • To offer counseling support in form of walk in or telephone and email support.

It should be noted that it is the fourth such MRC in India set up by MOIA. The first MRC was established in 2008 in Kochi, Kerala by MOIA. Later, fully functional MRCs in Hyderabad (Telengana & Andhra Pradesh), Gurgaon (Haryana) were established.

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