Cabinet approves extension of term of Commission to examine the issue of Sub-categorisation of OBC
• The Union Cabinet approved the extension of the term of the Commission to examine the issue of Sub-categorization of Other Backward Classes in the Central List till November 2018.
• The Commission has held extensive meetings with the stake holders including the State Governments, the State Backward Classes Commissions, various community associations and general public belonging to Backward Classes and Commissions.
• It had obtained caste-wise records of OBCs admitted in higher educational institution as well as similar caste-wise data of recruits in Central Departments, Central Public Sector Undertakings, PSBs & Financial Institutions.
• Based on this data, the Commission expressed the need of a round of discussion with the States and their Backward Classes Commission before finalising the sub-categorized lists and the Report.
Cabinet approves MoU between India and Indonesia on Health cooperation
• The Union Cabinet approved the signing the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between India and Indonesia on health cooperation.
• The MoU covers research and development, active pharmaceutical ingredients (API) and IT-based medical equipment; human resource development; and health services.
• A Working Group will be set up to further elaborate the details of cooperation and to oversee the implementation of this MoU.
Cabinet approves creation of two posts equivalent to Joint Secretary in Interpreters' cadre of MEA
• The Union Cabinet approved the creation of two posts equivalent to Joint Secretary Level in the Interpreters' cadre of the Union Ministry of External Affairs (MEA).
• The decision will help in augmenting expertise of the Interpreters' cadre and help meet the specialised requirements for training of the Interpreters.
• This measure would be important in addressing the increasing requirements for interpretation in the backdrop of significantly enhanced high-level bilateral and multilateral engagements of government.
Cabinet approves signing of MoU between India and Canada on collaboration among CA Institutions
• The Union Cabinet approved the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) and Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada (CPA Canada).
• The approvals came in respect of ex-post facto approval of the MoU signed in 2011.
• The MoU envisages arrangements for reciprocal membership that will apply to the respective members of both the Institutes subject to specified criteria.
• The MoU also includes further collaboration on the definition, learning, and evaluation of the professional qualities and skills and competencies of entry-level Chartered Accountants.
• It aims to work together to develop a mutually beneficial relationship in the best interest of ICAI members, students and their organizations.
Cabinet approves transfer of Central Hospital at Karma, Jharkhand to Jharkhand Government
• The Union Cabinet approved to transfer the Central Hospital at Karma, Jharkhand along with its land and building to the Jharkhand Government at free of cost to establish a new Medical College under the Centrally Sponsored Scheme (CSS).
• Till now, the hospital was under the scrutiny of the Union Ministry of Labour and Employment.
• The Central Hospital along with its land and building will be transferred to the Jharkhand Government within 3 months.
• An MoU will be signed between the Ministry of Labour & Employment and the State Government outlining the modalities including transfer/absorption of Staff etc.
• The proposal shall lead to enhancement of number of doctors being trained per year in the country.
• It will help in the improvement of the health care infrastructure in the region resulting in better health care services available to the common people.
Cabinet approves MoU between India and Korea on Trade Remedy Cooperation
• The Union Cabinet approved the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between India and Korea on Trade Remedy Cooperation.
• The MoU was signed in July 2018 during the State visit of President of Korea to India.
• The MoU will promote cooperation between the two countries in the area of trade remedies viz. anti-dumping, subsidy and countervailing and safeguard measures, which will enhance the bilateral trade relations.
Cabinet approves Concession Agreements & Land Lease Agreements for revival of units
• The Union Cabinet approved the proposal to provide land on lease to Hindustan Urvarak & Rasayan Limited (HURL).
• The cabinet also approved to provide the Concession Agreements & Land Lease Agreements for the revival of Gorakhpur & Sindri units of Fertilizer Corporation of India Limited (FCIL) and Barauni unit of Hindustan Fertilizer Corporation Limited (HFCL) by HURL.
• It also authorised the Inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC) to approve Substitution Agreements and approve other agreements, if any, to be signed between FCIL/HFCL and HURL for the three projects at Gorakhpur, Sindri and Barauni.
• The revival of Gorakhpur, Sindri and Barauni units of FCIL/HFCL will ensure substantial investment in the fertilizer sector.
• These units will act as anchor customer to Jagdishpur-Haldia Pipeline (JHPL) gas pipeline that is being laid for development of critical infrastructure in Eastern India.
Cabinet approves joint issue of postage stamp between India and South Africa
• The Union Cabinet was apprised of joint issue of Postage Stamps on India-South Africa on the theme, "20 Years of Strategic Partnership between India and South Africa".
• The joint stamps were released in June 2018.
• The Commemorative Postage Stamps on India-South Africa: Joint Issue depicts image of Deen dayal Upadhyaya and Oliver Reginald Tambo of South Africa.
• An MoU was signed to this effect between India and South Africa in May 2018.
Cabinet approves MoU between India and Indonesia on Scientific and Technological Cooperation
• The Union Cabinet approved a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between India and Indonesia on Scientific and Technological Cooperation.
• The MoU was signed by Dr Harsh Vardhan, Minister for Science, Technology and Earth Sciences at New Delhi and Mohamad Nasir, Minister for Research, Technology and Higher Education, Indonesia at Jakarta in May 2018.
• The MoU will open a new chapter in bilateral relations as both sides will now leverage complementary strengths spurred by a significant convergence of mutual interests in science and technology.
• The objective of the MoU is to promote cooperation in the fields of science and technology between India and Indonesia on the basis of equality and mutual benefit.
• The stake-holders will include researchers from scientific organizations, academia, R&D laboratories and companies from India and Indonesia.
Cabinet approves raising of four additional battalions of National Disaster Response Force
• The Union Cabinet approved raising of four additional battalions of National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) to strengthen the India's disaster response set up at an estimated cost of Rs 637 crore.
• The objective is to reduce the response time keeping in view the vast geographic area of the country.
• These four battalions will initially be raised as two battalions in Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) and one battalion each in Border Security Force (BSF) and Assam Rifles (ARs).
• Later, these four battalions will be converted into NDRF battalions.
• Based on the vulnerability profile, these four battalions will be placed in Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Delhi National Capital Region.
CCEA approves release of pulses procured from farmers under Price Support Scheme to States
• The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs approved the release of pulses to States/UTs at discounted rate to be utilised for various Welfare Schemes from the stock of pulses procured under Price Support Schemes (PSS).
• The decision will enable the States/UTs to use pulses in various Welfare Schemes like PDS, Mid-Day Meal Scheme etc. besides making available the warehouses, which may be required in coming Kharif season for storage of commodities.
• Under this approved Scheme, the States/UT Governments are offered to lift 34.88 lakh MT of Tur, Chana, Masoor, Moong and Urad at discount of Rs 15 per Kg.
• The State/UTs Governments utilise these pulses in their various Welfare Schemes like Mid-Day Meal, Public Distribution System, Integrated Child Development Programmes (ICDP) etc.
CCEA approves construction of New 4 Lane Bridge on Kosi River at Phulaut, Bihar
• The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs approved the project for construction of 6.930 km long 4-lane bridge at Phulaut in Bihar.
• The CCEA also cleared rehabilitation and up-gradation of existing Birpur- Bihpur section of National Highway-106 with Paved Shoulder in Bihar at a capital cost of Rs 1478.40 crore.
• The construction period for the project is three years and likely to be completed by June 2022.
• There is a 10 km long missing link between Phulaut and Bihpur on NH-106 and falling in the catchment area of Kosi River.
• The construction of this new Bridge will fill the existing 30 km long gap between Udakishanganj and Bihpur of National Highway Number 106 in Bihar.
CCEA approves continuation of Post Matric Scholarship for OBC Students for studying in India
• The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs approved continuation and revision of the Centrally Sponsored Scheme of “Post Matric Scholarship for Other Backward Classes Students for studying in India” (PMS-OBC) for the years 2017-18, 2018-19 and 2019-20.
• The revision in the PMS-OBC scheme will increase annual parental income from Rs 1 Lakh to Rs 1.5 lakh.
• The 30 percent of the funds allocated are earmarked for girl students and 5 percent for students with disabilities.
• Since the Scheme is funds-limited, central assistance shall be released according to the Notional Allocation.
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