Best of PIB: 18 Jan 2017

Namami Gange-Swachhta Doots

  • A program of grooming youth has been envisaged under Namami Gange Project
  • Thousands of youth will be groomed as volunteers and they would beckon the residents and visitors along Ganga to inculcate clean practises
  • 20000 youth from Ganga basin states will be trained as “Swachhta Doots” by Nehru Yuva Kendra Sangathan (NYKS). These youth will be deployed in 29 districts ( 2,336 villages) along the river in Ganga basin States of Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and West Bengal
  • The project has been approved at an estimated cost of Rs 10 crore

TheSwachhta Doots will

  • Educate the target audience about the adverse consequences of polluting Ganga
  • Provide information on existing government activities like construction of toilets, water harvesting and conservation for creation of a comprehensive database in coordination with National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG- the implementing arm ofNamami Gange programme)

 

Mission 3000 – PMBJK

  • As a part of this an MoU was signed between Bureau of Pharma PSUs of India(BPPI) and National Yuva Co-operative Society Ltd. (NYCS) here today, with the objective to setup 1000 Pradhan Mantri Bhartiya Janaushadhi Kendras (PMBJK) in both urban and rural places
  • The target is to set up 3000 such kendras by March 2017. The Government envisions to establish Jansaushadhi kendras in every block & gram panchayat across the country
  • Is an initiative of the Department of Pharmaceuticals, Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers
  • The objective is to make quality medicines accessible to all citizens of the country at affordable prices
  • The BPPI is the nodal agency for the implementation of PMBJK
  • The government is givingactive financial support to the extent of Rs. 2.5 lakh in the form of financial assistance to the Kendra’s’ setup in Government hospitals and incentives to individuals, with special and softer terms to SC, ST and differently abled persons.

 

Listing of Government owned General Insurance Companies at the stock exchanges

  • The FM in the budget speech of 2016-17 had announced that the public shareholding in the PSEs is a means for increasing transparency and accountability
  • In order to achieve the above said objectives the government has in-principle approved listing of five Public Sector General Insurance Companies (PSGICs)

The five PSGICs to be listed are

  • The New India Assurance Company Ltd
  • United India Insurance Company Ltd
  • Oriental Insurance Company Ltd
  • National Insurance Company Ltd. And
  • General Insurance Corporation of India

 

The listing is expected to yield the following benefits

  • The listing will give the companies access to funds through the capital market. This will reduce the dependence of these companies on the government
  • The listing will make some of the guidelines regarding the finances and accounting applicable to these companies, as a result of which there is better transparency and accountability
  • Will lead to better management and efficiency
  • Increase in earnings and better growth

 

Repealing Obsolete laws

  • A two member committee headed by R Ramanujan was set up by the government in 2014 and has recommended repealing of 1824 central laws
  • So far the government has passed 4 acts regarding repealing of 1175 laws
  • Of these 227 are appropriation acts passed by the parliament in those states with the president’s rule and the respective states have been asked to take necessary steps to repeal these acts
  • A list of remaining 422 acts have been circulated among the ministries and so far all the ministries have given comments/feedback regarding withdrawal of 105 acts
  • Hence today the Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi gave its approval for introduction of the Repealing and Amending Bill, 2017 to repeal 105 Acts.

 

Exclusion of States from the investments of National Small Savings Fund (NSSF) from 1.4.2016

  • As the interest rates of NSSF are higher compared to market rates, the FFC (Fourteenth Finance Commission) had recommended that the states should be excluded from investment operations of NSSF
  • Hence the cabinet has decided that barring Arunachal Pradesh, Delhi, Madhya Pradesh and Kerala; the involvement of other states will be excluded from 1/4/2016 and the outstanding NSSF debt obligations of these states will completely stand repaid by 2038-39
  • Since states are excluded from NSSF investments, the investible funds of NSSF with the government will increase which may reduce the government’s market borrowings. On the other hand, States will see an increase in market borrowings
  • The cabinet also decided to extend a loan of Rs 45000 cr to FCI for its food subsidy requirements

 

India’s Membership to IVI (International Vaccine Institution-South Korea)

  • The cabinet has approved India’s full membership to IVI governing council
  • This will entail an annual payment of $ 5,00,000 to IVI

About IVI

  • Established in 1997 on the initiatives of the UNDP
  • Is an international organization devoted to developing and introducing new and improved vaccines to protect the people, especially children, against deadly infectious diseases

 

Augmentation of the Corpus of Credit Guarantee Trust for Micro and Small Enterprises (CGTMSE)

  • The proposal has the following provisions
    • Augmentation of the Trust from Rs 2500 Cr to 7500 Cr, completely funded by the government of India
    • The coverage of the loans covered under the credit guarantee scheme will be increased from Rs 1 Cr to 2 Cr
    • To increase the coverage of the credit guarantee scheme for loans extended to Micro and small enterprises by NBFCs also
  • The measures would result into
    • Improve the sustainability of the fund
    • Enhance the quantum of credit guarantee to large number of MSEs
    • Improve financial management
  • Cabinet approves the Establishment of Indian Agricultural Research Institute, at the Gauria Karma Village in Barhi Block of Hazaribag, Jharkhand