Events & Observances Current Affairs - 2019

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7 August: National Handloom Day

Every year National Handloom Day is celebrated across India on 7 August 2019. The year 2019 marks 5th National Handloom Day. To mark the occasion, Union Minister of Textiles and Women and Child Development, Smriti Zubin Irani, will preside over a function at Vigyan Bhawan in New Delhi

National Handloom Day

Objective:

To honour handloom weavers in India.

To highlight India’s handloom industry.

Focuses on: The contribution of handloom to socio economic development of India and to increase income of weavers.

National Handloom Day 2019

Main Event: of National Handloom Day will be held in Bhubaneswar, Odisha with prime objective behind holding is to empower women and girls. Bhubaneswar has been chosen as venue for main event due to its rich tradition of Handlooms and as more than 50% of total weavers population of India resides in Eastern and North Eastern Regions and most of them are women.

Activities Undertake across country will include-

Distribution of Pehchan Cards and Yarn Passbooks

Distribution of MUDRA loan which is a flagship scheme of Union Government extend affordable credit to micro and small enterprises (MSME).

Distribution of lighting units and certificates for construction of work sheds.

The day would be observed at Weavers’ Service Centres in different States.

At 16 NIFT Campuses and Handloom Mela and exhibition, workshops, panel discussions, special stalls for handloom products at Gandhinagar and Kolkata NIFT campuses.

Live broadcast of discussion on Twitter from digital studio of IMG Reliance which will involve young designers and prominent personalities from handloom sector.

Symposium at Crafts Museum in New Delhi by Fashion Design Council of India with participants from Union Ministry of Textiles, master weavers, textile designers, fashion designers and textile experts.

Workshop through IGNOU or NIOS to impart information about educational opportunities to weave and their wards.

Background

In July 2015 Government of India declared 7 August as National Handloom Day with objective of generating awareness about importance of handloom industry to socio economic development of country.

Why 7 August? To commemorate Swadeshi Movement which was launched on 7 August 1905 in Calcutta Town Hall to protest against Bengal partition by British Government. Swadeshi Movement aimed at reviving domestic products and production processes.

1st National Handloom Day: It was inaugurated on 7 August 2015 by Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, at centenary of Madras University in Chennai.

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1– 7 August: World Breastfeeding Week being celebrated

World Breastfeeding Week (WBW) is being observed throughout world from 1-7 August 2019 in more than 120 countries with themeEmpower Parents, Enable Breastfeeding. Focus of this year is on protection, promotion, and support of breastfeeding.

World Breastfeeding Week (WBW)

Background: WBW was first inaugurated in 1991 and was 1st celebrated in 1992 by World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action (WABA).

As of 2019 it is now observed in over 120 countries by United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), World Health Organization (WHO) and their partners including individuals, organizations, and governments. WABA was established on 1991 with goal to re-establish a global breastfeeding culture and provide support for breastfeeding everywhere.

Objectives:

To encourage parents to adopt breastfeeding

To create awareness among parents about breastfeeding

To create awareness about importance of initiation and exclusive breastfeeding, and adequate and appropriate complementary feeding

To provide advocacy material about importance of breastfeeding

Celebrations in India

This year Food and Nutrition Board under Union Ministry of Women and Child Development, is organizing a number of activities to celebrate WBW with focus on protection, promotion, and support of breastfeeding.

Activities: such as Annaprashan Ceremony of babies at anganwadi centres by collecting beneficiaries from adjoining anganwadi centres and Quiz competition on Infant and Young Child Feeding (IYCF) are being conducted in 30 States and Union Territories (UT’s) through 43 Community Food and Nutrition Extension Units of Food and Nutrition Board. Conference for lactating mothers and anganwadi workers are also being organized to create awareness about importance of breastfeeding.

This involves participation from State functionaries of Health Department, Home Science Colleges, Medical Institutes, Universities, Non-Governmental Organisation (NGOs) and other stakeholders.

Exhibitions will also be organized at grassroots level on nutrition, displaying low cost nutritious diets for infants and young children.

Awareness generation programmes on-

Healthy eating, importance of maintaining hygiene and sanitation will be held for pregnant and lactating mothers at village level through dance and drama, puppet shows, skits, films, slide shows, AV Spots and rallies.

Why is Breastfeeding important?

It promotes better health for both mothers as well as children.

It prevents infections such as diarrhoea and acute respiratory infections in early infancy and thus help in reducing infant mortality.

It decreases risk of mothers developing breast cancer, ovarian cancer, type 2 diabetes, and heart disease.

It protects infants from obesity-related illnesses, diabetes and increases IQ.

Significance

The important nutrition intervention through observance of week-long celebration of Breastfeeding will help in breaking vicious cycle of malnutrition and aid Government to achieve National Nutrition Goals and Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) 2030. As per World Health Organisation (WHO), increasing breastfeeding to near-international levels will help in saving more than 8 lakh lives every year, majority of it being children under 6 months.

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