Newdelhi:24/12/19:The Cabinet today approved Atal Bhujal Yojana, a Central Sector Scheme with total outlay of six thousand crore rupees. Briefing media after the meeting of the cabinet, Information and Broadcasting Minister Prakash Javadekar said, the scheme will be implemented over a period of 5 years in identified areas in Gujarat, Haryana, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh. He said, implementation of the scheme is expected to benefit nearly 8350 Gram Panchayats in 78 districts in these States. He said, ATAL JAL will promote panchayat led ground water management and behavioural change with primary focus on demand side management. Mr Javadekar said, the scheme will boost income of farmers.
The Union Cabinet also decided to honour the contribution of former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee by naming the Strategic Tunnel under Rohtang Pass after him on December 25, tomorrow which is his birthday. The historic decision to construct a strategic tunnel below the Rohtang Pass was taken on 3rd June in 2000 when late Atal Bihari Vajpayee was the Prime Minister. The foundation stone for the Access Road to the South Portal of the tunnel was laid on 26th of May 2002. Mr Javadekar said, four thousand crore rupees have been approved for this. The 8.8-kilometre long tunnel will reduce the distance between Manali and Leh by 46 kilometres.
The Cabinet also approved conduct of Census of India 2021 and updation of National Population Register. Cabinet approved expenditure of over 8 thousand 754 crore rupees for the exercise of Census of India 2021 and over 3 thousand 941 crore rupees for updation of National Population Register. The next decennial Census is due in 2021 and would be conducted in two phases. The House listing and Housing Census will be carried out from April to September, 2020 and Population Enumeration from 9th February to 28th February, 2021.Briefing reporters after the meeting, Union Minister Prakash Javadekar said that Census exercise will be done by using App based technology to make it more easier. He assured that no proof, document or biometric will be taken during the process of NPR from the people.
He said, the NDA government trusts the people and whatever the people will say, the government will accept it. He clarified that NPR has nothing to do with National Register of Citizens. The minister also said that all the states have already accepted to do NPR and their officers are being trained. He said census is held every 10 years and NPR was started during the UPA government in 2010.
Cabinet also approved Promulgation of the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (Amendment) Ordinance, 2019.The Amendment will remove certain ambiguities in the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016 and ensure smooth implementation of the Code.
The Cabinet today also approved creation of post of Chief of the Defence Staff, CDS which was announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his Independence Day Address this year. The post of Chief of Defence Staff will be the rank of 4-Star General with salary equivalent to Service Chiefs and will head the Department of Military Affairs to be created under Ministry of Defence and will function as its Secretary.
The Cabinet also gave ex-post facto approval for official amendments to the Arms (Amendment) Bill, 2019 moved and passed by the Lok Sabha on 9th of this month.
Briefing on the Cabinet decisions, Minister for Railways Piyush Goyal said, the Cabinet approved organisational restructuring of Railway Board. He said, Railway Board will be headed by Chairman Railway Board who will be the Chief Executive Officer with 4 Members and some Independent Members. Mr Goyal said, existing eight Group A services of the Railways will be reorganised into a Central Service called Indian Railway Management Service, IRMS. He said, unification of services will end departmentalism, promote smooth working of Railways, expedite decision making, create a coherent vision for organisation and promote rational decision making. He added that unification of services has been recommended by various committees for reforming Railways and reforms undertaken with overwhelming support and consensus of Railway officers, at a two-day conference Parivartan Sangoshthi held on 7th and 8th of this month. Mr Goyal said, it’s a huge reform to end departmentalism and working in silos in Railways.
The Union Cabinet has also given its approval to release funds to the tune of over 627 crore rupees for the 10 projects sanctioned during 2018-19 and additional more than 1854 crore rupees for sanctioning of new projects during 2019-20 in Swadesh Darshan Scheme. Under the Scheme, Ministry of Tourism is developing critical tourism infrastructure in the country in a sustainable and inclusive manner to make India, a world class tourist destination.