Rs 9,125 crore supplementary budget passed in Himachal Assembly
The Vidhan Sabha passed the supplementary demands for grant of Rs 9,125.12 crore for the financial year 2020-21.
Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur, who holds the finance portfolio, presented the supplementary demands for grant in the Vidhan Sabha. Of the total amount, Rs 8,448.17 crore falls under the non-plan category while Rs 280.84 crore is under the plan portion and Rs 396.11 crore under Centrally-sponsored schemes.
Under the non-plan expenditure, Rs 7,999.57 crore has been provided and means advance, which is a short-term facility on which the interest rate is much lower than the market borrowings. This amount gets paid during the year itself and its net effect on borrowings is zero. This year, the Central Government has enhanced this amount from Rs 550 crore to Rs 880 crore due to the Covid pandemic.
Thakur said that due to Covid, the sources of income such as the Himachal Roadways Transport Corporation (HRTC) and the HP Tourism Development Corporation (HPTDC) had been badly affected, making the payment of salaries and pension to the employees difficult. “Despite these constraints, the government ensured the payment of its committed liabilities to the employees of these two undertakings
The Chief Minister said that the major expenditure proposed under the plan schemes included Rs 108 crore for the Health and Family Welfare Department, Rs 86.74 crore for World Bank-aided horticulture development projects, Rs 45.84 crore for the Bhanupali-Bilaspur-Beri railway line, Rs 17.36 crore for the Education Department and Rs 11.93 crore for the Public Works Department.
ISRO to launch Brazil’s Amazonia-1 by month-end
In its first dedicated commercial mission of the newly-formed NewSpace India Limited (NSIL), the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISO) will launch the PSLV-C51/ Amazonia-1 Mission at the end of the month.
Amazonia-1 is an optical earth observation satellite developed by National Institute for Space Research (INPE), Brazil.
This will be the first launch of a Brazilian satellite from India.
Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Bill 2021 Passed on 12th February
Minister of Justice Ravi Shankar Prasad introduced the bill in Lok Sabha on February 4, 2021, but the terms of the bill have passed a decree issued on November 4, 2020.
The Minister of Law emphasized India wants to be an excellent hub for arbitration. Therefore, the government has passed the bill and is working hard to make India an important hub for domestic and international arbitration.
Provisions of the Bill: The Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Bill 2021 involves domestic and international arbitration. It also defines the law for conducting mediation procedures. It replaces the decree containing the same provisions issued on November 4, 2020. The bill will amend the 1996 Arbitration and Settlement Act.
Arbitration and Conciliation Act 1996: The bill regulates domestic arbitration in India. The bill was amended in 2015. Another amendment was passed in Lok Sabha in August 2019.
Arbitration is a form of ADR (alternative dispute resolution). Under this mechanism, disputes are resolved outside the court. Disputes are decided by one or more people called “arbitrators.”
Rashtriya Sanskriti Mahotsav on 14th February
Rashtriya Sanskriti Mahotsav is the flagship festival of the Ministry of Culture. Since 2015, the event has been carried out with the active participation of Seven Zonal Culture Centres.
These festivals have always played a pivotal role in bringing the vibrant Indian culture to the public, rather than confining it to auditoriums and galleries.
It showcases the folk and tribal art, dance, music, food and culture of one state in other state, thus reinforces the stated goal of “Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat”, and also provides an effective platform for artists and craftsmen to support their livelihood.
The 11th edition will be organized in West Bengal, in Cooch Behar, Darjeeling and Murshidabad. These festivals are organized under the initiative of Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat.
Meri Saheli Initiative by Indian Railways
The Indian Railways launched the “Meri Saheli” initiative, focusing on women’s safety, with the aim of providing safety for female passengers travelling by train.
According to this initiative, a team of ladies and staff has been established. The team will visit all passenger coaches including female coaches to identify female passengers.
The team will record their travel details, including coach number and seat number, especially if a lady travels by train alone.
Passengers will be informed about RPF security hotline 182, GRP security hotline 1512 and other precautions, such as not taking food from strangers, only buying food from IRCTC authorized stalls and taking care of luggage.
The convoy will also advise them to contact the train escort and dial 182 at any time in any emergency.
Passenger details will be transmitted to the districts and areas en-route to meet them at their convenience until they reach their final destination.
The “Meri Saheli” initiative was initiated by the Railway Protection Force (RPF) in a pilot project on the Southeast Railway in September 2020. After the positive response of female passengers, the initiative has been extended to all regions.
Child Protection Services Scheme Supports the Children
The Ministry of Women and Child Development, implements the Centrally-sponsored Child Protection Services (CPS) scheme (formerly the Integrated Child Protection scheme) under the protection of the Integrated Child Development Services scheme, to provide support for children in difficult circumstances in all states/UTs.
The Integrated Child Protection Scheme (ICPS) is a centrally sponsored scheme implemented by the Union Ministry of Women and Child Development 2009-10.
The objective of ICPS is to create a safe and secure environment for children who violate the law and children who need care and protection.
The scheme is based on the basic principles of “protection of child rights” and the “best interest of the child”. This is an all-inclusive scheme that brings several existing child protection programes under one roof and improves norms.
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