Current Affairs - June 2015

Union Government launches NOWCAST and Insurance Web-Portals for Farmers

Union Government has launched NOWCAST weather alert system and Crop Insurance web portal for the benefit of farmers.

The new initiatives were launched by Union Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh at a function held in New Delhi.

NOWCAST weather alert system will provide free SMS service alerts on extreme weather conditions (ex-hailstorm) to over one crore registered farmers on their mobile phones.

The free SMS alerts will be sent in Hindi, English and regional languages as per farmers’ request. It will be issued to farmers whose mobile phones are already registered on the government’s mKisan portal.

The data for NOWCAST service will be taken from India Meteorological Department’s (IMD’s) 146 weather stations. Apart from these stations, 17 doppler radars of IMD will also provide information in this SMS service.

Under this initiative, the extreme weather data originated from IMD will be updated on mKisan portal using a web service. Later, from mKisan portal the warnings regarding extreme weather conditions will be automatically transmitted by SMS to farmers located at district and block level.

Insurance Web-Portal (www.farmer.gov.in/insurance) will be used to create awareness and encourage farmers to insure their crops by taking advantage of existing three schemes.

They are Modified National Insurance Scheme (MNAIS), National Agriculture Insurance Scheme (NAIS) and Weather based Crop Insurance Scheme (WBCIS). Besides these schemes, Coconut Palm Insurance Scheme (CPIS) is also applicable in some parts of the country.

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CCEA gives nod for inclusion of Uttarakhand, Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh in National Dairy Plan-I

Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) has given its approval for inclusion of Uttarakhand, Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand under the National Dairy Plan- I (NDP-I).

Decision in this regard was taken CCEA meeting chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi. Apart from this decision CCEA also extended the implementation period to achieve key outputs NDP-I upto 2018-19.

Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh were included in NDP-I because it has substantial milch animal population and primarily inhabited by tribal population.

While, Uttarakhand was included under NDP-I considering its potential for implementation of Fodder Development and Village Based Milk Procurement System, Ration Balancing Programme.

The implementation period of NDP-I was extended due late approval of NDP-I and the time taken in initiating the implementation of sub projects at End Implementing Agencies (EIAs) level.

About National Dairy Plan- I

National Dairy Development Board (NDDB) had approved NDP-I in 14 milk potential through the EIAs. It was formulated with a total outlay of 2242 crore rupees for a period of 6 years from 2011-12 to 2016-17.

At present NDP I is being implemented in 15 States which account for more than 90 per cent of the country’s total milk production and 98 per cent of the country’s fodder resources. They also account for over 87 per cent of the breedable cattle and buffalo population.

15 states are Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Gujarat, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Haryana, Maharashtra, Punjab, Odisha, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal.

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