National War Memorial, 3 new AIIMS and bonus for railway employees: 7 things cleared by the Cabinet

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1. Gives nod to establish 3 new AIIMS:-

  • The Union Cabinet has cleared a proposal to establish three new All India Institutes of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) at Nagpur in Maharashtra, Manglagiri in Andhra Pradesh and Kalyani in West Bengal under the Pradhan Mantri Swasthya Suraksha Yojna (PMSSY) at a cost of Rs 4,949 crore.
  • The new AIIMS will be established as institutes of national importance for providing quality medical education, nursing education and also to provide tertiary healthcare facilities to the people of these locations. 
  • The proposed institution shall have a hospital with capacity of 960 beds. In addition, there shall be a teaching block, administrative block, AYUSH block, auditorium, nursing college, night shelter, hostel and residential facilities.

2. ​Setting up of  National War Memorial and a National War Museum :-

  • Gave its approval to set up National War Memorial and a National War Museum at Princess Park, near India Gate, for soldiers who died post-independence.
  • The estimated cost of the project will be around Rs 500 crore and the total time for completion of the entire project is estimated to be five years. 

3. ​Neeranchal: The national watershed management plan:-

  • The Cabinet cleared a national watershed management plan, Neeranchal, to be done under the Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayi Yojana. This plan will have a total outlay of Rs 2,142.30 crore, which will be implemented at the national level as well as in the nine states of Andhra Pradesh, Chattisgarh, Gujarat, Jharkhand,Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Odisha, Rajasthan and Telangana. 
  • The NWMP will be a component of the Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayi Yojana (PMKSY) and will ensure access to irrigation for every farm and efficient use of water (Per Drop More Crop). 

Facts about Neeranchal :-

  • Neeranchal will bring about institutional changes in watershed and rainfed agricultural management practices in India and build systems that ensure watershed programmes and will ensure that rainfed irrigation management practices are better focussed, and more coordinated, and have quantifiable results. 
  • These systems will also devise strategies for the sustainability of improved watershed management practices in the areas, even after the withdrawal of project support
  • The programme will lead to reducing surface runoff of rainwater, increasing recharge of ground water and better availability of water in rainfed areas resulting in incremental rainfed agriculture productivity, enhanced milk yield and increased cropping intensity through better convergence related programmes in project areas. 

4. ​Productivity Linked Bonus (PLB) to railway employees:-

  • Cabinet approved the proposal to give productivity linked bonus to about 12.58 lakh railway employees. The financial implication of payment of 78 days' bonus to railway employees has been estimated to be Rs 1,030.02 crore. 
  • The wage calculation ceiling prescribed for payment of productivity linked bonus (PLB)  to the eligible non-gazetted railway employees is 3,500/- per month and the maximum amount payable per eligible railway employee is Rs 8,975 for 78 days.

5.Build, Operate and Transfer (BOT) basis mechanisation of Paradip Port :-

  • The Cabinet also cleared mechanisation of East Quay berths at Paradip Port on Build, Operate and Transfer (BOT) basis, under Public Private Partnership (PPP) mode' for handling thermal coal export.
  • The estimated cost of the project is Rs 1,437.76 crore of which Rs 1,412.76 crore will be spent by the concessionaire. The remaining Rs 25 crore will be spent by the Paradip Port Trust on dredging .
  • The mechanization of EQ 1, 2 and 3 Berths will increase their capacity from the existing 7.85 million tonnes to 30 million tonnes. The project is scheduled to be completed within three years.
  • This mechanisation project will go a long way in improving the operational efficiency in Paradip Port and thereby reduce transaction cost for thermal power plants dependent on coal supply through Paradip Port and thereby reduce transaction cost for thermal power plants dependent on coal supply through Paradip Port. 

6. ​Approved  protocol signed between India and Seychelles for co-operation in the field of blue economy :-

  • Union Cabinet has given its ex-facto approval to the protocol signed between India and Seychelles for co-operation in the field of blue economy. The protocol lays down the modalities and mechanism of cooperation between the two parties for ocean studies as well as scientific exploration and exploitation of sea based resources, for sustainable development and economic purposes. 

7. Avoidance of Double taxation with Israel and Vietnam :-

  • The Cabinet also approved the protocol for avoidance of double taxation with Israel and Vietnam to include effective sharing of bank information, a move aimed at dealing with the menace of black money.
  • The Cabinet also gave its nod for a protocol to amend the existing double taxation avoidance agreement (DTAA) with Vietnam, which also provides for exchange of information on tax matters, including bank information and information without domestic tax interest.

The protocol provides :-

  • The protocol provides for internationally accepted standards for exchange of information on tax matters, including bank information and information without domestic tax interest.
  • It is provided that the information received from Israel in respect of a resident of India can be shared with other law enforcement agencies with authorisation of the Competent Authority of Israel and vice-versa
  • The protocol provides for “Limitation of Benefits”  (LOB) Article as an anti-abuse provision aimed at preventing misuse of the Convention. The provisions of this Article enable use of the provisions of domestic law and measures concerning tax avoidance or evasion in the event of misuse of the Convention.

Background:-

The existing DTAC between Indian and Israel was signed in 1996. Both the Indian and Israeli sides agreed to update Article 27 on the 'Exchange of Information' in the pact to meet internationally accepted standards while the DTAA between Indian and Vietnam was signed in 1994.

 

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