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Government to introduce AI in MCA 21 portal; 26 Maharashtra reservoirs hit zero water storage- Current Affairs

MCA 21 is the electronic backbone for spreading information to all the stakeholders, including the regulator, corporates and investors.

May 20, 2019 12:11 IST
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Story 1- Government to introduce artificial intelligence system in MCA 21 portal

The Union Corporate Affairs Ministry plans to introduce artificial intelligence system in the MCA 21 portal in order to make the compliance process easier as well as to ensure routine enforcement activities are done regularly on autopilot basis.

What is MCA 21?

The portal is the electronic backbone for distribution of information to all the concerned stakeholders, including the regulator, corporates and investors.

All the filings under the companies law are submitted to the ministry through this portal.

Key Highlights

The Ministry plans to introduce Artificial Intelligence in the MCA 21 portal when its version 3 is rolled out within a year.

The main focus of the Ministry will be to rationalise all the forms and follow the principle of a single source of truth so that one is not required to fill in the known details again, as it will get filled automatically.

The Ministry will also aim to interlink databases so that routine enforcement is done 24x7 on autopilot basis.

MCA 21 allows electronic filings of various documents under the Companies Act, 2013 and has fully automated all processes related to enforcement and compliance monitoring under the Act.

Background

The Union Ministry sought applications from service providers earlier in 2019 to develop as well as operate the upgraded version of MCA 21 system.

The MCA 21 system was started in 2006. The first phase of the e-governance initiative of the ministry was implemented by Tata Consultancy Services and the second phase is being implemented by Infosys for the period from January 2013-July 2021.

Story 2- 26 Maharashtra reservoirs hit zero water storage level

According to the data released by the Water Conservation department of Maharashtra, 26 reservoirs in the state hit zero water storage level on May 18, 2019.

The water storage in Aurangabad Division, which comprises Aurangabad, Beed, Hingoli, Parbhani and Osmanabad districts, was reported to be 0.43 per cent in comparison to 23.44 per cent last year.

Key Highlights

The dams in the Aurangabad division are Paithan, Manjara, Majalgaon, Yeldari, Siddeshwar, Lower Terna, Sina Kolegaon and Lower Dhudna, all of which have zero storage at the moment.

The storage in these dams in May 2018 was 34.95 per cent in Paithan, 21.24 per cent in Manjara, 17.5 per cent in Majalgaon and 52.03 per cent in Lower Terna.

The other dams that have hit the zero storage level include Kadakpurna and Pentakli in Buldhana, Gosikhurd, Dina and Nand in Nagpur Division, Upper Tapi Hathnur in Jalgaon, Waki, Bham, Bhavli and Punegaon in Nashik Division, Dibhe, Ghod, Pimpalgaon Joge, Wadaj and Temghar in Pune, Bhima, Kundali Tata and Lonavala Tata in Solapur.

Tisgaon dam in Nashik and Totladoh in Nagpur also have 0.01 and 0.08 per cent water respectively.

The water storage in Maharashtra’s 103 large, medium and small reservoirs stood at 11.84 per cent, against 23.73 per cent last year.

Impact

According to activists, the state government's distribution of fodder camps for cattle in the drought-affected regions was not proper.

There is no surface and groundwater in most parts of Maharashtra. The water quality supplied through tankers is also very poor, which is affecting the health of children and pregnant women in rural areas.

How to resolve the issue?

As per activists, drawing dead water stock would impact the safety of the dams. Dead water storage refers to the water in a reservoir that cannot be drained using the outlets of the dam and can only be pumped out.

Background

The Central Water Commission, which monitors water storage availability in 91 major reservoirs across the country, has issued an advisory to the Maharashtra government stating that water storage is the lowest in reservoirs here in a decade.

The state government is already under fire from the opposition Congress and Nationalist Congress Party which have claimed that it is monitoring drought from air-conditioned offices on mobile phones rather than through on-ground assessment.

The state government, however, has rejected this criticism and has said that it has been putting technology to effective use to monitor the drought situation in the state.

The state government had declared drought in 151 talukas and 260 mandals in October 2018.

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