From expansion of airport infrastructure to clearing dues of sugarcane farmers: 11 key decisions by the Union Cabinet today

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New Delhi | Updated: May 2, 2018 5:11:45 PM

The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi met on Wednesday and took several key decisions.

Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi met on Wednesday and took several key decisions.

The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi met on Wednesday and took several key decisions including construction and operationalization of 100 bedded General Hospital at Najafgarh, New Delhi. The government also approved the upgradation and expansion of airport infrastructure at Lucknow, Chennai and Guwahati airport. Besides, the government has also approved the financial assistance to sugar mills for clearing cane dues of farmers.

Here are the key decisions taken by the Union Cabinet:

1. Construction and Operationalisation of 100-bedded General Hospital in New Delhi: The cabinet approved a proposal for the construction and operationalisation of 100-bedded General Hospital in the national capital. The hospital will be built near Delhi’s Najafgarh area. The estimated cost of the project is Rs 95 crore. The hospital is likely to function from May 2020.

2. Upgradation and Expansion of airport infrastructure at three cities: The Union Cabinet has given its approval to three major infrastructure projects for upgradation and expansion of airport infrastructure at three cities, viz., Guwahati, Chennai, and Lucknow, at a total expenditure of more than Rs 5,000 crore. The fund allocated for Guwahati terminal is Rs 1,383 crore, for Chennai it is Rs 2,467 crore and for Lucknow it is Rs 1,232 crore. The move is likely to boost tourism in the Northeast and aimed at furthering the government’s ‘Act East’ policy.

3. Continuation of Umbrella Scheme ‘Green Revolution-Krishonnati Yojana’ in agriculture sector: The government has given its go-ahead for merging 11 agricultural schemes or missions into single umbrella programme with a central allocation of Rs 33,269 crore for the three financial years 2017-18, 2018-19 and 2019-20. The scheme is aimed to develop the agriculture and allied sectors in a scientific manner to increase the income of farmers.

4. Social Security: The government has raised the investment limit under its Social Security initiative from existing Rs 7.5 lakh to Rs 15 lakh for the senior citizens under the -Pradhan Mantri Vaya Vandan Yojana. It will now allow a senior citizen to earn Rs 10,000 pension per month.

5. Providing Financial assistance to Sugar Mills for clearing sugarcane dues of farmers: The Union Cabinet has approved the financial grant of Rs 5.50 per quintal of sugarcane crushed in sugar season 2017-18 to sugar mills in a way to help them clear the dues of farmers. The grant will be paid directly to the farmers on behalf of the mills.

6. Renaming and Restructuring of MSDP as PMJVK: The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs has approved the proposal for the renaming of Multi-sectoral Development Programme to Pradhan Mantri Jan Vikas Karyakaram. The scheme is likely to provide better socio-economic infrastructure facilities to minority communities in various fields which include education, health and skill development.

7. Boost to healthcare infrastructure: The Union cabinet has given its approval for the continuation of Pradhan MantriSwasthya Suraksha Yojana during 2019-20. Under this scheme, new AIIMS hospitals will be set up and the existing infrastructure of government hospitals will be upgraded.

8. Restructuring of the Indian Bureau of Mines: The Union Cabinet has approved a proposal for restructuring of the Indian Bureau of Mines. Under this service, the government has upgraded, created and abolished certain posts of Joint Secretary-level and above. The move is likely to reform and transform the mineral sector. However, the government has maintained the existing strength of 1477.

9. Approval of new Group ‘A’ service: The Union Cabinet also approved the review of cadre of Union Services and the formation of new Group ‘A’ service under the Petroleum and Safety Organisation. It’s a technical cadre in the name of Indian Petroleum and Explosives Safety service (IPESS). The move will enhance career growth of its Group ‘A’ service officers.
10. Accession to Protocol under WHO Framework Convention on tobacco control: The Union Cabinet has given its approval to accede to the Protocol under World Health Organisation (WHO) on the control of tobacco-related products in a way to eliminate trade of these products. This protocol is a new initiative in strengthening worldwide action against tobacco products and is also a new legal instrument in public health.
11. Mutual Recognition Agreement between the ICAI and SAICA: The Union Cabinet also approved the Mutual Recognition Agreement (MRA) between the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) and the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants (SAICA). The move will establish a mutual cooperation in the field of advancement of accounting knowledge, professional and intellectual development etc.

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