Andhra Pradesh: SPVs set up to raise funds for water grids
To resolve the drinking water crisis in drought-hit regions, the state government has constituted separate special purpose vehicle (SPVs) take up water grid projects.
The government has designed the SPVs in such a way that they could pool required money from financial institutions and government agencies such as National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (Nabard) from different schemes. The state government estimated that it would require at least Rs 9,000 crore to complete the new drinking water schemes.
The government directed the rural water supply and water resources department to coordinate with other departments to expedite the water grid projects. The state government has granted administrative approvals for different water grid projects helping them to approach the financial institutions.
With abundant funds available with the Union Jal Shakti ministry under drinking water schemes, the state government has tied up a majority of the water grid schemes with central funds to lessen the burden.
Sources said that the Centre had already agreed to extend financial assistance to the tune of Rs 3,200 crore to the state government to take up the drinking water schemes under Jal Jeevan Mission.
The state government has also succeeded in roping in Nabard for grant of funds for water grid projects. While the state government is likely to spend close to Rs 1,500 to Rs 2,000 crore as its share, tie-ups with different agencies to grant loans to the tune of Rs 3,500 crore have also been finalised.
MoU Signed between India and Bangladesh for Disaster Management
India has emphasised implementing the recently-signed memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Bangladesh over disaster management, resilience and mitigation on a precedence basis.
Bangladesh has been given the invitation to join the Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (CDRI). Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure is a coalition of national governments, UN agencies, multilateral development banks and the private sector which aims to promote resilience of new and present infrastructure to climate and disaster risks.
Bangladesh was advised to put in force the lately concluded MoU in disaster management, resilience and mitigation on a precedence basis. The hope that these mechanisms will assist the two nations to stay higher organised to face such challenges in the future.
Biotech-PRIDE by Ministry of Science and Technology
Biotech-PRIDE (Promotion of analysis and Innovation through knowledge Exchange) pointers was discharged by the Department of Biotechnology (DBT), Ministry of Science and Technology. Further, a website of the Indian Biological knowledge Centre (IBDC) was additionally launched.
These pointers concede to bridge alternative existing biological datasets/data centres with the IBDC, which is able to be known as Bio-Grid. This Bio-Grid is a National Repository for biological data, data and knowledge.
Also, Bio-Grid is liable for sanctioning its exchange, developing measures for safety, standards and quality for knowledge sets and establishing elaborated modalities for accessing data.
Scheme for Reclamation of Problem Soils – Union Agriculture Minister
Union Agriculture Minister gave information on this scheme in written format in Lok Sabha.
Scheme for Reclamation of Problem Soils by Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare is a centrally sponsored scheme.
Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare is implementing Scheme for Reclamation of Problem Soils as a sub-scheme of Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana since 2016-17 for the development of problem soils (Alkalinity, Salinity and Acidity).
The Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana is implemented on a pilot basis in 15 States in order to bring such land under cultivation. For the various pilot projects under Reclamation of Problem Soils in the last 3 years, an amount of Rs. 24.60 crore was released to the States.
Sub Mission on National Food Security Mission
The Government of India is creating awareness among farmers for Nutri Cereals (Millets) under the Sub Mission on National Food Security Mission (NFSM) through demonstration and training. Nutri Cereals includes ragi, sorghum, bajra and small millets.
Nutri Cereals (Millets) is one of the significant components of the National Food Security Mission.
National Food Security Mission was launched in 2007. It is a centrally sponsored Scheme.
The main objective is to increase the annual manufacturing of rice, wheat and pulses.
The mission was launched to extend the manufacturing of rice, wheat and pulses by place growth and enhancing productivity, restoring soil fertility and productivity, developing employment opportunities, and improving farm level economy.
Sub-components of the NFSM are NFSM-Rice; NFSM-Wheat; NFSM-Pulses; NFSM-Coarse Cereals; NFSM-NFSM-Nutri-Cereals; NFSM-Commercial Crops.
Allocations under National Child Labour Project dip by less than half in 2 years
Allocations under the National Child Labour Project (NCLP), a labour and employment ministry scheme, meant to rescue and rehabilitate child labourers, has declined by less than half in the last two years, the government’s response to a question by BJP’s Rajya Sabha MP, Syed Zafar Islam, has shown.
While the ministry acknowledged that child labour has not been eradicated, and that it runs the NCLP scheme to rescue and rehabilitate children under the age of 14 by linking them to the education system and skilling them, its submissions shows that fund allocations towards the scheme dropped from Rs 90 crore in 2018-19 to just over Rs 41 crore in 2020-21.
The ministry said that even the conviction rate under the Child and Adolescent Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Act, 1986, as per NCRB data of 2019, remains dismal. In 2019, of the 770 cases registered, 684 cases were charge sheeted and only 88 accused were convicted.
The highest number of cases was registered in Telangana. In 314 cases, only 32 accused were convicted. Karnataka, Assam and Gujarat were next in line with 83, 68 and 64 cases respectively. While charge sheets were issued in 58 cases in Karnataka, 63 cases in Gujarat and 37 in Assam, the number of convictions was zero in Assam, eight in Karnataka and four in Gujarat.
In response to a separate question, the government said 645 children were orphaned between April and June 28 this year due to the Covid-19. The highest number of 158 orphaned children was in Uttar Pradesh, followed by Andhra Pradesh at 119, according to government data.
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